Gotham Gazette

The Place for New York Policy and politics

 

Bill de Blasio

Bill de Blasio

  • de blasio city

    City budget announcement from 2019 (photo: Ed Reed/Mayor's Office)


    The New York City Council approved an $88.2 billion budget for the 2021 fiscal year shortly after midnight in one of the most divided votes for the legislative body in recent history. The new budget, which takes effect immediately for the July 1 start of the new fiscal year, is a sharp decline in expected city spending given cratering revenue brought on by the coronavirus pandemic and includes significant cuts to and funding shifts from the NYPD in response to recent mass protests against

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  • ceremonial for police

    (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office)


    Police Commissioner Dermot Shea had strong words Tuesday about the City Council's recently-passed bill banning police chokeholds, which he said went much further than the state's new ban and ignored input from law enforcement.

    Despite Mayor Bill de Blasio having expressed support for the bill, Shea called it "incredibly reckless" in a videoconference with interfaith leaders, hosted by the New York Board of Rabbis. The comments are the latest example of Shea and other NYPD leaders publicly

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  • cojo del

    The Mayor and Speaker at an NYPD press conference (photo: John McCarten/City Council)


    Update

    As pressure mounted on the city to drastically reduce spending on policing in the budget that is due before Wednesday, Mayor Bill de Blasio and the City Council reached a tentative agreement on Monday to cut $1 billion from the NYPD and to reinvest funds in youth and social services. Nearly half the reduction, however, involves shfiting spending on school safety to the Department of Education rather than actual cuts. 

    The agreement would reduce the NYPD's

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  • city budget negotiations council de blasio johnson

    The Mayor and City Council discuss the budget (photo: William Alatriste/City Council)


    New York City’s next fiscal year begins Wednesday, July 1, and there is no clear picture of the city’s fiscal future. The fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic has been catastrophic for the city’s economy, gutting revenue streams and necessitating major cuts in planned city government spending, along with tapping into billions of dollars in reserves.

    Mayor Bill de Blasio and the City Council are engaged in intense negotiations as they seek to

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  • 3 activists pledge

    Mayor de Blasio makes a summer youth employment announcement (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayor's Office)


    Teens Take Charge, a youth advocacy group, held a town hall Tuesday where its members demanded Mayor Bill de Blasio announce his decision regarding the Summer Youth Employment Program by Friday, June 26, or they will take to the streets to protest. 

    “We’ve been screaming this message at the mayor for the

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  • de Blasio NYPD

    Another chapter between Mayor de Blasio and the NYPD (photo: Edwin J. Torres/Mayor's Office)


    A long-stalled bill meant to shed light on the surveillance equipment used by the NYPD has suddenly moved through the City Council with the support of Mayor Bill de Blasio, despite being virtually unchanged since the mayor and NYPD leaders raised dire alarms about it in recent years. Now de Blasio is breaking with his own police department, which he has maintained has been on board with a slew of recent changes to NYPD oversight and discipline in the wake of national

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  • 6 presents fiscal year

    De Blasio makes a budget presentation (photo: Mayor's Office)


    New York City’s political leadership is staring at major challenges with a new city budget due by the July 1 start of the next fiscal year. Mayor Bill de Blasio and the City Council are facing massive drops in tax revenue given the coronavirus shutdown, and must still craft a balanced budget.

    The mayor has sought a federal “bailout” to replace several billion dollars in lost revenue, but while the Democrat-led House of Representatives passed a massive relief bill the

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  • de Blasio city bus

    De Blasio rides the bus (photo: Edwin J. Torres/Mayor's Office)


    As the coronavirus public health crisis waned and New York City headed toward entering the first phase of “reopening” its economy after the government-ordered near-shutdown, Mayor Bill de Blasio was under increasing pressure to develop transit plans to help New Yorkers returning to work get around by various and safe means. This was especially true regarding buses.

    While the city’s subways and buses are run by the state-controlled MTA, de Blasio does have significant sway over the bus system

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  • NYPD in schools

    Police in schools (photo: Edwin J. Torres/Mayor's Office)


    As the City Council is pushing to cut $1 billion from the NYPD’s $6 billion budget for next fiscal year, City Council Members Mark Treyger and Donovan Richards have proposed revoking the police’s role in school safety and restoring it to the Department of Education. The proposal has been a top priority for some police reform and education activists for years and has taken on renewed urgency in the wake of the countrywide protests following the police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis.

    Though Mayor

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  • de Blasio city hall reopening govt

    Mayor de Blasio at City Hall (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayor's Office)


    Brooklyn City Council Member Laurie Cumbo, a Democrat and the Council’s Majority Leader, wants to establish a new position in city government to oversee the reopening of city government after the coronavirus shutdown. Her bill (Intro. 1950) would create and require the position of “City Restart

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  • 3 city shirley

    A rendering of the planned Shirley Chisholm monument (photo: women.nyc)


    The building of the first monument in a city initiative to honor famous women from New York City’s history and correct a long-standing gender imbalance in monuments across the city has been delayed, Gotham Gazette has learned. City officials are pointing to the shutdown stemming from the COVID-19 pandemic as the reason that the monument of Brooklyn's Shirley Chisholm, who became the first black woman elected to the House of Representatives in 1968, will not be completed by the end of this year

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  • De Blasio City Council budget briefing 2018

    De Blasio briefs City Council members (photo: William Alatriste/City Council)


    With three weeks to go before the budget for the next fiscal year is due, the City Council is putting pressure on Mayor Bill de Blasio to spell out planned cuts to city agencies to fill a $9 billion projected budget gap. But the administration missed a Monday deadline set by the Council to propose new cuts, balancing the budget in a way that reprioritizes social services and investment in youth and education.

    The COVID-19 pandemic is taking a massive

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  • lebanon hosp res

    The NYPD budget is in the spotlight, but what's in it (photo: Edwin J. Torres/Mayor's Office)


    The daily protests in New York City over police brutality and racism bore fruit this weekend as Mayor Bill de Blasio reversed course, announcing that he would cut police department funding and institute other reforms at the NYPD. The State Legislature also took notice and expedited a long list of police accountability and transparency measures that had languished for years.

    Over the last ten days, as the protests swelled across the city and the NYPD responded

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  • de Blasio Shea NYPD

    Mayor de Blasio with Police Commissioner Shea & other NYPD officials (photo: Ed Reed/Mayor's Office)


    As Mayor Bill de Blasio struggles with the protests against police brutality and racism that have gripped New York City over the past few days, he has promised that NYPD officers will be swiftly disciplined for any misconduct in their response to protesters and that larger structural changes to police accountability are on the way. But the NYPD has been slow to reform its opaque internal disciplinary processes over the years, and has even missed self-imposed deadlines

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  • intervale ave bx

    Mayor de Blasio rides the bus (photo: Edwin J. Torres/Mayor's Office)


    New York City is set to begin a phased “reopening” on Monday, June 8, as indicators show significant progress in tackling the COVID-19 pandemic. But as many New Yorkers start heading back to work, Mayor Bill de Blasio has offered no solutions to balance city residents’ need for transportation, maintaining public health by preventing new coronavirus infections, and preventing all-out gridlock if too many New Yorkers turn to cars.

    About 5.4 million people rode the New York City subway

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  • De Blasio NYPD ceremony

    Mayor de Blasio and the NYPD (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayor's Office)


    Earlier this week, after nearly six-and-a-half years in office and repeatedly failing to meaningfully and systematically hold his own police department accountable for brutalizing and killing black New Yorkers, Mayor de Blasio took to Twitter to express outrage about Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin’s murder of George Floyd.

    De Blasio forcefully demanded swift action by authorities in a city half-way across the country. He then proceeded to fail completely to stop police brutality in his

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  • Mayor de Blasio property tax reform dead

    Mayor de Blasio's slow-play on property tax reform has now been compounded (photo: Edwin J. Torres/ Mayor's Offie)


    The start of the year 2020 offered what many believed to be the most promising steps in decades to revamping New York's confusing and unfair property tax system. In January, an advisory commission established by Mayor Bill de Blasio and the New York City Council, which was tasked with comprehensively assessing and reevaluating the property tax system, released a set of recommendations. While coming much later than many had

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  • de Blasio coronavirus briefing

    Mayor de Blasio during a recent coronavirus briefing (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayor's Office)


    New York City’s response to the coronavirus outbreak has been a battle on shifting sands. As information about the disease and officials’ recognition of its threat evolved over time, so did the government approach, from initially continuing business as usual well after the first cases in the city were confirmed to a statewide shutdown of sorts and strict social distancing guidelines that have now been in place in New York City for over two

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  • deblasio chance carmen

    Mayor de Blasio during a school visit (photo: Edwin J. Torres/ Mayor's Office)


    As the coronavirus pandemic further exposes deep fissures in the city's education landscape for low-income students and students of color, it has also further stalled Mayor Bill de Blasio's already-halting efforts to integrate New York City's deeply segregated schools.

    In the nine months since a de Blasio-appointed advisory group released its final recommendations on ways to desegregate and in other ways improve city schools, virtually nothing has been said on the

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  • dcc pont risland

    Mayor de Blasio on Rikers Island (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office)


    In his second term in office, Mayor Bill de Blasio has worked with the New York City Council to usher through a plan that will close the scandal-ridden Rikers Island jail complex and replace it with four borough-based facilities by 2026. He has repeatedly decried the crumbling infrastructure and the well-documented incidents of violence, by detainees and guards, among the many issues of the sprawling Island facilities. But the mayor has not visited Rikers Island in three

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  • New Yorkers seek assistance

    New Yorkers wait on line for food (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayor's Office)


    As New York City shut down amid the coronavirus outbreak, and hundreds of thousands of people lost their jobs and livelihoods, the city saw a massive increase in applications for food stamps and cash assistance.

    According to new data from the city’s Human Resources Administration and Department of Social Services, applications for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), more commonly referred to as food stamps, and for cash assistance have surged since the

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  • perfect time houghton

    Mayor de Blasio makes a housing announcement (photo: Ed Reed/Mayor's Office)


    In the wake of the economic devastation caused by the coronavirus shutdown, Mayor de Blasio must find budget savings anywhere he can, while still advancing his mission to make New York “the fairest big city” in America.  

    It won’t be easy. But the sudden drop in tax revenue should not stop the mayor from continuing to make one smart investment: creating new affordable housing.

    With the pandemic exposing the full extent of the city’s homeless crisis, now is

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  • dcc jponte rikers

    (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office)


    The Rikers Island jail complex, a notorious and decrepit institution sitting on 413 acres in the East River, was slated for closure well before New York City became the country’s epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak, during which the complex has emerged as a hotspot for infections that have led to the deaths of several detainees and corrections officers.

    But the timeline for shutting down the jail complex and building local jails in four boroughs has been thrust into uncertainty by countervailing

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  • debi rose joins

    Council Member Debi Rose with youth workers (photo: William Alatriste/City Council)


    With New York City facing a massive budget gap and severe social restrictions because of the coronavirus pandemic, Mayor Bill de Blasio made the unpopular decision to suspend the Summer Youth Employment Program, which in past years gave tens of thousands of young people jobs over the summer. But as de Blasio faced swift and sweeping criticism for the move, administration officials testified before the City Council that an alternate plan is in the works and will be unveiled soon.

    Over

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  • de Blasio Orthodox Jews security

    Mayor de Blasio & city officials in Borough Park in January (photo: Michael Appleton/Mayor's Office)


    [UPDATE (5/19/20): After this story was published, an NYPD spokesperson told Gotham Gazette security cameras had been installed at 30 locations in Brooklyn as part of an effort to combat anti-Semitic hate crimes. The remaining 70 cameras planned to be deployed with the input of the community have likely been put on hold due to the coronavirus outbreak, the spokesperson said.]

    Mayor Bill de Blasio in January announced 100 new

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