Gotham Gazette

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The Week Ahead in New York Politics, January 8

New York City Hall

New York City Hall

What to watch for this week in New York politics:

This week we'e continuing to examine Governor Andrew Cuomo's 2018 State of the State speech and policy book, which were delivered last week. Cuomo's 2018 agenda includes fighting the new federal tax code, a variety of proposals that affect New York City, and a 'reform' agenda that largely resembles past years since little on election, campaign finance, and government ethics reform has been done.

Action will continue this week in Albany as the state Legislature kicks more fully into gear. There are two session days this week as well as several committee hearings.

We're also watching the first full week for Corey Johnson as Speaker of the City Council, and the developing relationship between Mayor Bill de Blasio and Johnson as speaker. Johnson is expected to continue getting settled into the job, figuring out some of his staffing, and working out plans for Council committee chairs and members. Johnson spent the first few days after being elected speaker on Wednesday, Jan. 3, meeting with almost all of the 50 other members of the Council to gauge their interests and priorities. Johnson will be on WNYC radio Monday morning discussing his new role.

Meanwhile, de Blasio begins his week with three public events -- see below for details.  

There are several events to be aware of this week around the city and state - see our day-by-day rundown below.

***Do you have events or topics for us to include in an upcoming Week Ahead in New York Politics?
e-mail Gotham Gazette editor Ben Max: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.***

The run of the week in detail:

The State Legislature will be in session on Monday in Albany. At 2 p.m., Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie will deliver remarks to kick off his chamber's year (the Senate held introductory session briefly last week).

At 10:30 a.m. Monday, City Council Speaker Corey Johnson will appear on WNYC's The Brian Lehrer Show.

On Monday morning at 10:45 a.m., Mayor de Blasio will be in Woodside to "join the Department of Transportation and NYPD to announce the latest progress under the City’s Vision Zero initiative." The mayor will not be taking press questions.
At 4:30 p.m. at City Hall, "the Mayor will hold a public hearing for three pieces of legislation: Intro. 1619-A requires DYCD to report on shelter access for runaway and homeless youth, Intro.1705-A streamlines intake from youth shelter to DHS adult shelter, and Intro. 1653-B establishes new decibel levels for construction and authorizes DEP to issue stop work orders in response to certain noise violations. The Mayor will also hold a public hearing and sign seven pieces of legislation: Intro. 1036-A relates to a census on vacant properties, Intro.1039-A studies opportunities to develop affordable housing on certain vacant property, Intro. 54-A requires DOT to study the feasibility of using alternative fuels for the City’s ferries, Intro. 880-A requires a review of the use of biodiesel for school buses, Intro. 1465-A expedites the phasing out of higher grade oil city power plants, Intro. 1629-A requires periodic recommendations on energy efficiency requirements for certain buildings, and Intro. 1632-A relates to energy efficiency scores." The mayor will not be taking press questions.
In the 7 and 10 p.m. hours, the Mayor will appear on NY1’s Inside City Hall with Errol Louis.

At 11:30 a.m. Monday, schools Chancellor Carmen Fariña will make "an announcement on arts education" at PS 51 in Manhattan.

The State Legislature will be in session on Tuesday in Albany.

The State Senate Majority will hold a press conference on Tuesday at 10:30 a.m. in the Capitol in Albany "to unveil a 2018 Affordability Agenda that focuses on broad-based tax relief for families and seniors. Senate Majority Leader John J. Flanagan will be joined by members of the conference to detail the first part of the Senate’s “Blueprint for a Stronger New York” that focuses on making the state less costly and more attractive for hardworking New Yorkers."

On Tuesday morning, Comptroller Tom DiNapoli will discuss the state’s fiscal challenges as 2018 begins, during an event in Albany with The Times Union’s Casey Seiler.

On Tuesday, the Alliance for Quality Education will bring “500 parents, students, and community members to Albany to demand full and fair funding for our schools.”

At 9 a.m. Tuesday, the New York City Board of Correction will hold a public board meeting at 125 Worth Street in Manhattan.

At 10 a.m. Tuesday, the Board of Standards and Appeals will hold a public hearing at Spector Hall in Manhattan.

On Tuesday at about noon outside the state Senate chamber, "State Senator Brian Kavanagh will join with good government groups and legislators to call on Governor Cuomo to fund early voting in his Fiscal Year 2018-2019 Executive Budget proposal. Thirty-seven states and the District of Columbia have already implemented this critical reform, and the press conference will highlight why including funds in the state budget is essential to ensuring early voting becomes a reality." Participants will include Kavanagh and other elected officials, and representatives from The Brennan Center for Justice; Citizen Action; Citizens Union; Common Cause/NY; The League of Women Voters of New York State; The New York Public Interest Research Group (NYPIRG); and Transportation Workers United Local 100 (TWU 100).

On Tuesday at 3 p.m. at City Hall, "Mayor de Blasio and First Lady McCray will deliver remarks on Intro. 1241, which relates to diaper changing stations." They'll be joined by City Council Member Rafael Espinal, sponsor of the bill, and others. The mayor will not be taking press questions.

City Council Member Margaret Chin will hold a re-inauguration ceremony on Tuesday at 5 p.m. City Council Speaker Corey Johnson will give remarks.

At 6 p.m. Tuesday, City & State will host its annual “State of Our State” reception at the Albany Capital Center. The main event will be a panel discussion regarding “the top policy issues and how and where the state should invest in this year’s budget.” The panel will consist of Assemblymembers Dick Gottfried, Michaelle Solages, and David Weprin, as well as John Maggiore, policy director for the New York State Executive Chamber.

At 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Chancellor Carmen Fariña will attend a town hall meeting of District 9’s Community Education Council at PS 555 in the Bronx.

At the State Legislature on Wednesday:
--The Assembly Standing Committee on Racing and Wagering will meet at 10 a.m. in Albany to examine “interactive fantasy sports in New York State.”
--The Assembly Standing Committee on Libraries and Education Technology will meet at 10:30 a.m. in Albany for its “Annual Budget Oversight Hearing on funding of libraries in New York State for fiscal year 2017-2018.”

At 6 p.m. Wednesday, the New York City Bar Association will host a panel discussion on the economic impact of federal tax reform and potential passport revocation by the State Department for those who owe more than $50,000 in back taxes, penalties, and interest. The panel will consist of David Kamin, of NYU Law, and Drita Tonuzi, Deputy Chief Counsel for the IRS.

At 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, the Civilian Complaint Review Board will hold a public board meeting at the Queens Library in Long Island City.

At the State Legislature on Thursday: The Assembly Standing Committees on Codes, Health, and Alcoholism and Drug Abuse will meet jointly at 10:30 a.m. at 250 Broadway in Manhattan to “examine the potential impacts of the legalization and regulation of marijuana and its effects on New York’s criminal justice and public health care systems.”

Friday and the weekend
At the State Legislature on Friday: The Assembly Standing Committee on Insurance will meet at 10 a.m. in Albany to “evaluate whether the new title insurance regulations are successfully lowering consumer costs while also ensuring that the title insurance market remains healthy and competitive in New York State.”

Mayor de Blasio is expected to make his weekly appearance on WNYC radio’s The Brian Lehrer Show at 10 a.m. Friday.

The weekend will extend into Martin Luther King, Jr. Day on Monday, January 15.

Have events or topics for us to include in an upcoming Week Ahead in New York Politics? E-mail Gotham Gazette executive editor Ben Max any time: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. (please use "For Week Ahead" as email subject).

by Ben Brachfeld and Ben Max

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