Gotham Gazette

The Place for New York Policy and politics

 

State Legislature

State Legislature

  • mayor state state

    Mayor de Blasio with Senate Leader Stewart-Cousins (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayor's Office)


    Democrats in control of the state Legislature for the first time in a decade ended a whirlwind legislative session last week, having notched a raft of progressive victories that were denied to them when Republicans controlled the state Senate. 

    At a news conference in Albany on Friday, Governor Andrew Cuomo declared it the “the most productive legislative session in modern history,” and in New York City, Mayor Bill de Blasio agreed.

    “As we tally up the

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  • gov cuomo photos

    (photo: the governor's office)


    Just after it ended, Governor Andrew Cuomo deemed 2019’s “the most productive legislative session in modern history” at a news conference on Friday in Albany.

    The Democrat in the first year of his third term went through only a partial list of the many laws and investments he and state legislators had made between January and June, in what was the first period of full and functional Demcratic control of state government in decades.

    Though the session included a good deal of sparring between Cuomo and legislators,

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  • gov cuomo fare evasion enf policy

    Gov. Cuomo (photo: Kevin P. Coughlin/Governor's Office)


    Governor Andrew Cuomo celebrated the achievements of 2019 on Friday, calling the legislative session an “overwhelming success” at a wrap-up news conference in the Capitol. During the January to June session, Cuomo and the state Legislature, with its two Democratic majorities for the first time in a decade, moved legislation dealing with a long list of issues, from combating climate change to expanding voting and reproductive rights, new gun regulations to a cap on annual property tax

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  • water environment climate protection

    Ord Falls Rapids upper Hudson River (photo: NYS DEC)


    June 19, 2019 - Max & Murphy Podcast: Landmark Climate Legislation in Albany

    priya mulgaonkarAfter the passage of the landmark Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act in Albany, Priya Mulgaonkar from the NYC-Environmental Justice Alliance and NY Renews coalition joined the show to discuss the legislation, what it does and

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  • Cuomo New York equal rights pride

    (photo: Governor's Office)


    The state Senate embraced the notion that the civil rights protections enshrined in the New York state constitution should be more inclusive when it decisively passed an expansive version of an equal rights amendment Monday.

    The Senate’s amendment goes a step farther than other equal rights amendments by expanding the equal protection clause of the state bill of rights to outlaw discrimination not only based on sex, but also on

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  • Cuomo solitary confinement prison

    (photo: Governor's Office)


    Thousands of people are subjected to long-term solitary confinement in New York. The United Nations calls it torture. New York’s jails and prisons call it business as usual.

    Our state’s laws permit 23-hour confinement for months and even years at a time in jails and prisons across the state. This despite the fact that long-term solitary confinement creates severe and irreparable mental and

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  • gov cuomo 2million

    (photo: Philip Kamrass/Office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo)


    Picture a student sprinting to math class, late for a test after sleeping through the alarm.  Hair disheveled, backpack open, their heart is racing. But in an instant this quintessential scene morphs into something far more dangerous as the student is faced with armed police officers, aiming their guns, demanding the student lie down on the ground.

    This is the grim prospect for the students of Lockport, New York, whose school district is the latest to stumble headlong into the national surveillance

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  • Cuomo climate

    (photo: Kevin P. Coughlin/Governor's Office)


    The state Senate, Assembly, and Governor Cuomo have reached an agreement on a version of the Climate and Community Protection Act (CCPA), setting the stage for passage of a bill to significantly reduce New York’s greenhouse gas emissions and transition the state toward a green economy. The bill has previously passed three times in the Democratic-led Assembly, but stalled in the Senate, which was controlled by Republicans for virtually all of the past several decades until this year.

    As support for the CCPA

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    the state capitol (photo: Mike Groll/Governor's Office)


    In an interview at the end of May, Governor Andrew Cuomo made a provocative assertion: he said opponents to recreational marijuana legalization in the state Senate have argued no state in the country has legalized the controversial measure without first putting the question to voters in a ballot referendum. No such referendum has taken place in New York, but Cuomo -- who has pushed for marijuana legalization this year -- indicated on WNYC

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    Danny Barber, left, is the author; with Gov. Cuomo & others (photo: the Governor's office)


    I stood with Governor Cuomo last year when he showed how bad conditions in public housing have gotten after decades of federal neglect. With the governor’s leadership, NYCHA was allocated $250 million in last year’s state budget. While that money was held up due to the appointment of a federal monitor, the need for additional funds remains again this year.

    Major capital repairs are needed to keep residents safe and healthy in all five boroughs. Leaks, mold, pests, broken

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  • mta usb wifi

    (photo: MTA/Patrick Cashin)


    Transit policy is climate policy. In New York, transportation emits 30% of the city’s carbon pollution and 34% of the state’s. Since it’s easier to drive less in a city than in suburban and rural areas, much of that is carbon we can easily spare. When shrinking New York’s carbon footprint, transportation emissions are low-hanging fruit.

    Granted, the challenge is stiff. Car registrations in the city are rising, up 9% in the past four years. The city’s own government vehicle fleet has grown 19% in size and 25% in miles traveled in the past five

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  • red room meeting gov ac

    (photo: Mike Groll/Office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo)


    June 12, 2019 - Max & Murphy Podcast:Dissecting Dynamics in Albany, with Casey Seiler

    casey seiler albany times unionCasey Seiler, managing editor of the Albany Times Union, joined the show to discuss the end of the legislative session in Albany, including the historic deal reach on rent regulations,

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  • gov amc rockland

    (photo: Governor's Office)


    We are days away from the end of the legislative session and among the many important issues Governor Cuomo and New York legislators have left to accomplish is addressing the racially-biased and unjust enforcement of marijuana prohibition in our state.

    The Marijuana Regulation & Taxation Act (MRTA), currently being considered by New York lawmakers, is one of the clearest pathways toward reducing racism in New York. In the last 20 years our beloved state has earned the dubious distinction of becoming the marijuana arrest

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  • gov cuomo us climate brown

    Cuomo, middle, with Jerry Brown, left, & John Kerry (photo: Kevin P. Coughlin/Governor's Office)


    Gov. Andrew Cuomo doubled down on his plan to fight climate change and his opposition to the  Climate and Community Protection Act on Friday amid increased pressure to pass the legislation.

    The bill ­– which intends to move the state’s economy to 100 percent renewable energy by 2050, invest clean energy funds in

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  • whats the data point


    What's The [Data] Point? Episode 75 -- 6/15, Crunch Time in Albany as Rent Regulations Expire, with REBNY's John Banks and Assemblymember Harvey Epstein [You can download What's The [Data] Point? wherever you get your podcasts, including on iTunes]

    faceoffRent regulations impacting about 1 million New York City apartments home to 2 million people are set to expire June 15. State lawmakers and

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  • Cuomo Penn Station

    (photo: Don Pollard/Governor's Office)


    For decades, Penn Station has wreaked havoc on the lives of hardworking New Yorkers, and seriously stained our city’s reputation as a global cultural and economic hub. But all hope is not lost; the door is opening for significant improvements to finally be made.

    We’re now just a few short years away from the opening of Moynihan Train Hall and East Side Access. These two important projects, which will temporarily reduce the number of passengers travelling through Penn, present a brief window for significant

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  • nature climate change

    (photo: Governor's Office)


    As the Climate and Community Protection Act (CCPA) gains increasing support from state and federal legislators, the state Assembly and Senate will soon decide whether or not to vote on the bill, which now has a majority of sponsors in both houses of the Legislature but not the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo.

    The CCPA, described by many as New York’s attempt at a Green New Deal, has three major components. The bill would end reliance on fossil fuels by moving the state’s economy to 100% renewable energy by 2050,

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  • Niou Ramos Albany

    the authors: Assemblymember Niou, center, & Senator Ramos, left (photo: @NYCComptroller)


    We’ve got a big money problem here in New York, and we hear loud and clear the New Yorkers who are calling for a small donor solution in the form of public financing of elections.

    Public financing became a top issue in state budget negotiations earlier this year because of public demand. The plan for a commission to now determine the parameters of public financing of elections was placed in a large budget bill in the final hours of budget negotiations, making it

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  • myrie avr

    Senator Zellnor Myrie at Thursday's pre-hearing rally (photo: @SenatorMyrie)


    Following several reforms to the state’s election and voting laws that were passed by the state Legislature and signed by Governor Cuomo earlier this year, the New York State Senate’s elections committee seems poised to move ahead with legislation to implement a system of automatic voter registration.

    At a public hearing on Thursday in Albany, the elections committee, chaired by Democratic Senator Zellnor Myrie of Brooklyn, heard testimony from experts, election officials, voting reform advocates, and

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  • cm reynoso press

    Council Member Reynoso, one of the co-authors (photo: John McCarten/City Council)


    In recent history, New Yorkers have witnessed numerous instances of brutality and mistreatment at the hands of the police. Justice has not been delivered in many of these cases, and they all point to a glaring reality: a lack of transparency and accountability plagues the New York City Police Department.

    The public was vividly reminded of this just a few weeks ago when a ...

  • green light ny driver's licenses

    (photo: @EddieATaveras)


    As a former Suffolk county police officer and detective, I think a lot about what keeps our communities safer. And one thing I know is that our roads are safer when everyone who is driving is licensed and insured. That’s why, as a state legislator, I believe New York should let all qualified drivers, regardless of immigrant status, follow the same process to get a driver’s license.

    Driving is essential on Long Island. Throughout most of our region, you need a car to get to

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  • students with signs

    (photo: Governor's Office)


    There has been much discussion that the state Legislature and Governor Cuomo may raise the cap on charter schools, especially since the sub-cap of 235 charter schools in New York City has now been reached. As public school parents and co-chairs of the Education Council Consortium, which represents the elected parent leaders of Community Education Councils across the five boroughs, we overwhelmingly oppose raising the cap

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  • climate crisis

    (photo: Emil Cohen/City Council)


    Grassroots climate activists hope that before state lawmakers adjourn for the summer they will strike a deal with Governor Cuomo to adopt the strongest climate legislation possible.

    And let’s be clear: the strongest climate bill is the NYS OFF Act (A3565/S5526), not the more publicized Climate and Community Protection Act (CCPA).

    The Off Fossil Fuels Act, for 100% renewable energy by 2030, grew out of the successful grassroots campaign to ban fracking in New York. It seeks to implement the study

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  • climate change scooter 2

    (photo: Lime)


    Solving our biggest global crisis of a rapidly warming planet means considering everything through the lens of potential solutions, even something as small as the electric scooter.

    Micromobility is rightfully capturing the keen attention of urbanists around the world -- including the much-discussed e-scooter. And New York is poised to take advantage as well.

    Simultaneously, New York is considering various necessarily ambitious policies to combat climate change and legislation to authorize local governments to roll

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  • protecting hc nyc

    (photo: Kevin P. Coughlin/Office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo)


    New York State had achieved the highest percentage of residents with health insurance coverage of the four most populous states in the country by 2017, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation, one of the nation's leading health research organizations.

    Ninety-four percent of New York's residents had health insurance coverage that

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