Gotham Gazette

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City Council

City Council

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    Council Member Carlina Rivera, front, with Council Speaker Corey Johnson (photo: John McCarten/City Council)


    “We have these populations of New York City that just alarmingly have not been vaccinated,” said City Council Member Carlina Rivera, a few days after co-chairing a recent Council oversight hearing on vaccine hesitancy and equity. “Like you can look at New Yorkers who are aged 85 years and older — they have the lowest vaccination rate of all age groups, there's only 58% of them that are fully vaccinated. These are some of our most vulnerable in

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    City Council chambers (photo: Gerardo Romo/NYC Council)


    With less than three months before the end of its term, the City Council is assessing legislation that could weaken rules meant to prevent the use of government resources for political purposes.

    City officials are banned, with few exceptions, from sending official mass mailers to constituents for 90 days before a primary or general election. The rationale behind that blackout rule is to thwart the potential use of city funds and resources to boost an elected official’s image and political

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    Coastal resiliency project underway (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office)


    Update: The City Council approved the Citywide Climate Adaptation Plan legislation on Thursday, October 7.

    After Hurricane Ida once again exposed New York City’s vulnerability to major climate events, the New York City Council is set to pass, and Mayor Bill de Blasio is expected to sign, a bill that will mandate the creation of a new “citywide climate adaptation plan.”

    The Council will vote on Thursday to approve the legislation, ...

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    City Council Member Carlina Rivera (photo: John McCarten/City Council)


    October 1, 2021 - Max Politics Podcast: City Council Member Carlina Rivera on Hospitals Oversight & More

    City Council Member Carlina Rivera, a Manhattan Democrat who chairs the Council's Committee on Hospitals, joined the show to discuss two recent hearings she chaired, including one on the city's covid vaccine program, her upcoming legislative priorities, her bid to become the next City Council Speaker, and more.

    Listen to the

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    City Council Member Justin Brannan (photo: John McCarten/City Council)


    Following the severe destruction across the city from Hurricane Ida, City Council Member Justin Brannan is urging immediate measures to better equip the city to withstand severe storms in the future and “our new climate reality.”

    Brannan, a Democrat who chairs the Council’s Committee on Resiliency and Waterfronts, appeared recently on

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    Council Member Keith Powers (photo: City Council)


    City Council Member Keith Powers has the crisis in the city’s Rikers Island jail complex directly on his plate. The Manhattan Democrat is chair of the Council’s Committee on Criminal Justice and therefore responsible for one key layer of oversight of city jails.

    Just after convening an emergency meeting about conditions on Rikers with several key city officials and ahead of chairing a formal City Council oversight hearing on the subject, ...

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    Council Member Menchaca (photo: William Alatriste/City Council)


    September 22, 2021 - Max Politics Podcast: City Council Member Carlos Menchaca on the Push for Noncitizen Voting & More

    City Council Member Carlos Menchaca, a Brooklyn Democrat and chair of the Council's immigration committee, joined the show to discuss legislation that would extend municipal voting rights to permanent resident green card-holders and other issues he's working on.

    Listen to the conversation and let us know what you think, on

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    City Council Member Justin Brannan (photo: John McCarten/City Council)


    September 16, 2021 - Max Politics Podcast: City Council Member Justin Brannan on Resiliency Oversight & More

    City Council Member Justin Brannan, chair of the Council's resiliency and waterfronts committee and a candidate to be the next speaker of the Council, joined the show to discuss his recent oversight hearing and other issues related to resiliency and government effectiveness, as well as his bid for speaker and more.

    Listen to

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     Tiffany Cabán, left, and Felicia Kalan


    As in many other races in New York City this election cycle, public safety is the defining issue in the general election in Queens’ City Council District 22, where a rising leftist political star who wants to abolish prisons and the police is facing a Republican pitching a far more conserative approach and ‘common sense’ moderation in the overwhelmingly Democratic district.

    The major party nominees are Tiffany Cabán, a democratic socialist and former public defender who won the Democratic

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    City Council Member Keith Powers (photo: Jeff Reed/City Council)


    September 8, 2021 - Max Politics Podcast: City Council Member Keith Powers on Oversight of City Jails & More

    City Council Member Keith Powers, a Manhattan Democrat who chairs the Council's criminal justice committee, joined the show to discuss the crisis in city jails and the steps he's taking and monitoring to improve conditions, including an emergency stakeholder meeting he coordinated and a Council oversight hearing he will soon chair. Powers also discussed efforts to

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    Council Speaker Johnson, right, and Council Member Treyger (photo: John McCarten/City Council)


    UPDATE: On Saturday August 21, following the publication of this article on the evening of Thursday August 19, the City Council scheduled an oversight hearing by the education committee on the city's school reopening plans for Wednesday September 1. The hearing will come less than two weeks before the first official day of school for more than 900,000 public school students on Monday September 13. The article below has been

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    Council Member Helen Rosenthal, the author (photo: John McCarten/City Council)


    I am proud to support and fight for workers in the human services sector. The city’s 125,000-plus social service workers provide essential services to 2.5 million New Yorkers, especially seniors, children, people with disabilities, and our neighbors experiencing homelessness. Most recently, they have been absolutely central to New York City’s response to the pandemic, ensuring that the most vulnerable do not fall through the cracks.

    Human

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    (photo: Edwin J. Torres/Mayoral Photography Office)


    With women poised to take a majority of seats in the New York City Council for the first time come January, new ways of addressing public safety could be on the way.

    Jennifer Gutierrez, who won the Democratic primary by a wide margin in the 34th City Council District and is likely to win the general election easily, is among those expected to be part of that new Council majority. Gutierrez, who has worked in the office of term-limited Council Member Antonio Reynoso, the likely next

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    City Council Speaker Corey Johnson and Health Chair Mark Levine (photo: John McCarten/City Council)


    After weeks of flagging covid vaccine rates, ongoing racial disparities among the vaccinated, and the troubling spread of the Delta variant, Mayor Bill de Blasio is taking his first steps to impose more coercive vaccine policies in New York City. The mayor announced on Monday an upcoming mandate for all city workers to be vaccinated or subject to weekly covid testing, while encouraging private sector actors to institute their own

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    Wendy's (photo: @jjbers)


    When the country’s largest fast food companies were pressured to step up to combat sexual violence, forced labor, and other human rights abuses in their supply chain, they all eventually agreed — except one. 

    After years of pressure, Wendy’s still refuses to follow its peers and join the Fair Food Program to protect farmworkers and uphold their human rights. But the movement to get Wendy’s to take this basic step is gaining momentum. It’s time for the New York City Council to pass ...

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    Letitia James, the author, celebrating the likely women's Council majority (photo: @21in21NYC)


    New York’s biggest strength – by far – is its diversity. New Yorkers speak more than 700 languages, represent hundreds of countries, and span every level of socio-economic status. We’re every color, every religion, and every identity. Our communities thrive when we lean into our diverse cultures, ensuring voices from all corners of our city are heard and represented. Unfortunately, our City Council has historically failed to achieve that.

    For a city with a

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    Fast food drinks (photo: @brraveheart)


    A fast-food combo meal, perfect for lunch in a New York minute, right? Not so fast. A recent study of fast-food chain restaurants found that the default drink size included with combo meals at most restaurants contains more than an entire day’s worth of added sugars.

    With New Yorkers resorting to fast food out of convenience or necessity due to limited access to healthier options, it becomes an issue of public health and equity

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    A celebration of women heading to City Hall (photo: @21in21NYC)


    Triumphant speeches and words of solidarity filled the air at City Hall Park on Tuesday morning. A historic expected majority of women likely to fill City Council seats in January gathered at a press conference, pledging to bring a culture of mutual support and a commitment to underrepresented constituents to the legislative body. They were joined by current and former elected officials, advocates, and others who had been part of the yearslong effort to bring the 51-seat Council, where there are

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    (l-r) Council Members Keith Powers, Adrienne Adams, Justin Brannan, Carlina Rivera


    The New York City Council is set for seismic change, as new members will be elected to more than two-thirds of the 51 seats this year. With those new members will come the election of a new Council speaker to preside over the legislative body and exert control of its agenda, and four Democrats are already vying for the powerful position.

    Council Member Justin Brannan from Brooklyn, Council Members Carlina Rivera and Keith Powers from Manhattan, and Council Member Adrienne Adams of

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    Mayor and Council Speaker in 2019 (photo: John McCarten/City Council)


    Mayor Bill de Blasio and City Council Speaker Corey Johnson on Wednesday announced an agreement on a $98.7 billion “recovery budget” for the 2022 fiscal year, which begins Thursday.

    The budget, the final one for both de Blasio and Johnson as they reach term limits, was $100 million more than the executive budget that the mayor unveiled in April, flush with billions in

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    The City Council (photo: William Alatriste/City Council)


    The New York City Council is set to experience a seismic shift in composition, with dozens of Council members term-limited out after this year, and the changing of the guard in the 51-seat legislative body may wind up being most apparent in its gender balance.

    In 30 districts, there were “open” races for those seats and, in most cases, crowded Democratic primaries to fill them. With Democrats enjoying a significant voter enrollment advantage over Republicans, this month’s primaries

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    The City Council chambers (photo: Emil Cohen/City Council)


    Welcome to Council Countdown.

    Gotham Gazette, City Limits, City & State, and The Queens Eagle are teaming up to cover the dozens of competitive New York City Council races that are part of the 2021 city election cycle heading toward June primaries and the fall general election. From late April into June, the four publications will report on more than 40 competitive City Council races to help voters know the dynamics of those elections and about the candidates running in

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    Activists, Council Member Brad Lander & others (photo: John McCarten.City Council)


    With voting underway in this month’s primary elections, including for almost all 51 City Council seats, including about three dozen that are “open” due to term limits, crowded fields of candidates are pushing for every vote.

    The competition is especially hot, if civil, in Brooklyn’s 39th City Council District, one of the most politically-active areas in the city, with some of the highest voter turnout rates, and the home district of Mayor Bill de

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    Council Member Moya (photo: Emil Cohen/City Council)


    One year ago, COVID-19 swept across Corona, turning the Queens neighborhood into the epicenter of the pandemic — and leaving behind a trail of death, sickness, hunger, and unemployment. In the wake of the crisis, which hit Northern Queens harder than most of the city, incumbent City Council Member Francisco Moya says his work to address healthcare and food insecurity kept the pandemic’s effects on his 21st

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    (l-r) Elizabeth Adams, Victoria Cambranes, Sabrina Gates, Toba Potosky, Lincoln Restler, Stu Sherman, Benjamin Solotaire & April Somboun at June 6 debate


    As Stephen Levin nears the end of his three terms in office representing Brooklyn’s 33rd City Council District, eight Democratic candidates are vying to replace him — bringing varied resumes and competing visions on key issues like policing, the crumbling Brooklyn-Queens Expressway, and the recent tide of development in the district’s neighborhoods.

    The 33rd District stretches along

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