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Bloomberg Watch; De Blasio Mental Health Conference; NYPD Body Camera Hearing; & More: The Week Ahead in New York Politics, November 18


New York City Hall

New York City Hall


What to watch for this week in New York politics:

This week begins with renewed examination of former Mayor Michael Bloomberg's record on policing, particularly his administration's overuse of stop-and-frisk tactics that resulted in a court ruling of unconstitutionality based on racial profiling, and, more than six years later, an apology from Bloomberg on Sunday at a black church in Brooklyn, offered as he appears on the verge of formally announcing a campaign for the Democratic nomination for president.

Many observers called it too little too late, with Mayor Bill de Blasio also referring to its timing as "transparent and cynical" given Bloomberg has previously, including recently, defended his administration's approach to policing, especially vis-a-vis communities of color, where hundreds of thousands of innocent young men of color were stopped and searched during the Bloomberg era. Now on the precipice of running for president, Bloomberg claimed to have come to a new realization, which he outlined for churchgoers, the media, and voters across the country, during his Sunday remarks. Also notable: when he announced earlier this year he was not going to run for president, Bloomberg made fun of the way former Vice President Joe Biden had entered the race on an 'apology tour' of sorts, and said he would not be able to do such a thing and renounce what he believes in.

There's a Democratic primary debate on Wednesday night this week, but Bloomberg, whether he officially declares his candidacy or not, won't be participating. Given that he is eschewing fundraising in what appears to be a likely run, he won't be able to qualify for either the November or December debates, and may miss others beyond that depending on how he polls and what criteria the Democratic National Committee sets. The first votes of the primary. set for February, are quickly approaching.

Meanwhile, there's a lot happening this week in New York politics, including a variety of important hearings at the City Council (like one on the NYPD's rollout of its body camera program) and State Legislature. But that's not all, there's much to be aware of -- 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:

Monday, November 18
On Monday and Tuesday, Mayor Bill de Blasio and First Lady Chirlane McCray will host the 2019 Cities Thrive Mental Health Conference at New York Law School. Participants will also include Deputy Mayors Dean Fuleihan and Phillip J. Thompson; Susan Herman, Director of the Office of ThriveNYC; elected officials from other parts of the country, health care professionals, including Dr. Vivek Murthy, former Surgeon General of the United States, and others. Fuleihan will give welcoming remarks and McCray will give an opening keynote on Monday morning. De Blasio will give a keynote Monday afternoon. Thompson will open Tuesday’s proceedings, which will also include remarks, via video, by London Mayor Sadiq Khan.

At the City Council on Monday:
--At 10 a.m., the Committee on Civil and Human Rights will hold a hearing on legislation related to “expanding the definition of employer under the human rights law to provide protections for domestic workers.”
--At 10 a.m., the Committee on Public Safety will hold an oversight hearing on NYPD’s rollout of body-worn cameras and related legislation. Public Advocate Jumaane Williams, whose bill will be discussed, will participate. [Read: City Council to Examine Rolllout of NYPD Body Camera Program]
--At 1 p.m., the Committee on Youth Services will go on a tour of the Ali Forney Drop-in Center on West 125th Street.
--At 1 p.m., the Committee on Transportation will hold an oversight hearing on liveries and corporate black cars. 

On Monday at 10 a.m. in Manhattan, Young Invincibles and partners will host a panel about New York City’s student homelessness crisis and related solutions. Panelists will include Public Advocate Jumaane Williams; Dr. Christine Baker-Smith of the Hope Center for College, Community, and Justice; Dr. Nicholas Freudenberg of the CUNY Graduate School of Public Health & Health Policy and the CUNY Urban Food Policy Institute; Abja Midha of HERE to HERE; and Jennifer Pringle of the New York State Technical and Education Assistance Center for Homeless Students (NYS-TEACHS), Advocates for Children of New York.

At 10:30 a.m. Monday, Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul will deliver remarks at the opening of Bantam Tools Advanced Manufacturing Facility in Peekskill. At 7 p.m., Hochul will give a keynote address at the New York League of Conservation Voters reception in Manhattan.

NYU Wagner will partner with 13 other NYU schools to host How To Be a Political Activist from 5-6:30 p.m. Monday, providing an “interactive training program addressing how to mobilize voters, how to use social media as an electioneering tool, how to speak across political divides, and how to build coalitions.” Panelists will include Juanita Lewis, the Hudson Valley Organizing Director of Community Voices Heard; Linda Lausell Bryant, Professor at the Silver School of Social Work; and Justin Ruben, the Board President of MoveOn.org.

New York Times Magazine writer Nikole Hannah-Jones will appear for a fireside chat about the 1619 Project with Dr. Christina Greer, 2018 NYU McSilver fellow and Fordham professor, at 6 p.m. Monday at NYU, an event hosted by the McSilver Institute for Poverty Policy and Research at NYU and the Office of NYU President Andrew D. Hamilton.

At 6 p.m. Monday, Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer will host a public hearing on new development in Lenox Terrace, at Joseph Kennedy Center.

At 6:30 p.m., Public Advocate Jumaane Williams will attend the Lenox Terrace rezoning hearing. At 8 p.m., Williams will give the keynote address at the Tourette Association of America Gala, where he "will speak about his childhood growing up with Tourette Syndrome and how it has impacted his life and time in office."

The Municipal Art Society of New York will host the final installment of 2019 Closer LOOK series from 6:30-8 p.m. Monday to “examine the rights of artists who create non-commissioned works in the public and private realm.”

On Monday evening, Mayor de Blasio will make his usual appearance on NY1's Inside City Hall with host Errol Louis.

Tuesday, November 19
As previously mentioned, the de Blasio administration-led Cities Thrive Mental Health Conference will continue Tuesday in Manhattan.

At the City Council on Tuesday:
--At 9:30 a.m., the Subcommittee on Zoning and Franchises will hold a hearing
--At 10 a.m., the Committee on Immigration and the Committee on Cultural Affairs, Libraries and International Intergroup Relations will jointly hold an oversight hearing on the role of public libraries in support of immigrant New Yorkers.
--At 10 a.m., the Committee on Contracts and the Committee on Veterans will jointly hold an oversight hearing on contracting by the Department of Veterans Services. 
--At 1 p.m., the Committee on Governmental Operations and the Committee on Finance will jointly hold a hearing on multiple bills including one that would establish an office of not-for-profit organization services.

At 10 a.m. Tuesday, the New York City Board of Standards and Appeals will hold a public hearing in Manhattan.

The State Senate Standing Committee on Education and the State Senate Standing Committee on Budget and Revenues will jointly hold a public meeting from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tuesday at Bayside High School in Queens to “hear stakeholder input regarding the components of the Foundation Aid formula in relation to student, district and community needs with a goal of greater equity in school financing.” 

At 10:30 a.m. Tuesday, the New York State Joint Commission on Public Ethics will meet.

At 11 a.m. Tuesday in Manhattan, the State Senate Standing Committee on Energy and Telecommunications, the State Senate Standing Committee on Corporations, Authorities and Commissions, the Assembly Standing Committee on Energy, and the Assembly Standing Committee on Corporations, Authorities and Commissions will jointly hold a public hearing on Natural Gas Moratoriums. 

At 1:30 p.m. Tuesday, the New York City Board of Elections will meet.

New York University’s Marron Institute of Urban Management will host a talk titled “What is the cost of building a subway?” with Alon Levy, Marron Fellow, at 6 p.m. Tuesday at the Silver Center for Arts and Sciences. 

Henry Street Settlement will host “Power and Policy on the Lower East Side: A historical perspective,” from 6:30-8 p.m. Tuesday at the Abrons Arts Center to “address the history of redlining and segregation on the Lower East Side from the 1930s to the present, including how the decision of government and banks in the past still affect the neighborhood today.” Panelists will include Lena Afridi, Association for Neighborhood & Housing Development; Francisca Benitez, Art Against Displacement; Braden Crooks, Undesign the Redline Project; Marika Dias, Legal Services NYC; and Samuel Stein, author, Capital City: Gentrification and the Real Estate State.

Wednesday, November 20
At the City Council on Wednesday:
--At 10 a.m., the Committee on Housing and Buildings and the Committee on Fire and Emergency Management will jointly hold an oversight hearing on the implementation of automatic sprinkler requirements in commercial buildings.--At 11 a.m., the Committee on Land Use will hold a hearing.
--At 1 p.m., the Committee on Economic Development will hold an oversight hearing on the economic impact of the Hunts Point Food Distribution Center.
--At 1 p.m., the Committee on Hospitals and the Committee on Technology will jointly hold an oversight hearing on electronic health records.
--At 1 p.m., the Committee on Justice System and the Committee on Women and Gender Equity will jointly hold an oversight hearing on the efficacy and the efficiency of batterer intervention programs.  
--At 1 p.m., the Committee on Higher Education will hold an oversight hearing on diversity in higher education classrooms and curricula.

At 10 a.m. Wednesday in Manhattan, the State Senate Standing Committee on Elections and the Assembly Standing Committee on Election Law will jointly hold a public hearing to discuss the implementation of early voting throughout New York State.

At 12:30 p.m. Wednesday, the Manhattan Institute will host a panel on “Rent Regulation: The future of housing affordability in New York City” at The Mezzanine. Speakers will include Reihan Salam, President, Manhattan Institute; Howard Husock, Senior Fellow, Manhattan Institute and Contributing Editor, City Journal; Ingrid Gould Ellen, Paulette Goddard Professor of Urban Policy and Planning and Faculty Director at the NYU Furman Center for Real Estate and Urban Policy; and Brooklyn City Council Member Brad Lander. The panel will be moderated by Alyssa Katz, Deputy Editor of The City.

At 5 p.m. Wednesday, this week’s Max & Murphy show will air on WBAI radio -- 99.5FM or streaming at wbai.org -- and will feature and extended interview with City Comptroller Scott Stringer.

New York State Assembly Members  Mike Reilly and Michael LiPetri will jointly host a meeting of the Water Quality Task Force from 6-8 p.m. Wednesday at the College of Staten Island to “discuss the condition of the state’s water resources, address emerging contaminants and prioritize and fix aging infrastructure.”

Thursday, November 21
Crain’s New York Business will host a healthcare summit Thursday called “New York after DSRIP- What comes next?”

ABNY Census 2020 in partnership with Labor Counts! Complete Cout Committee will jointly present “New York City Census Summit 2019” from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Thursday “to energize and equip community-based organizations across the five boroughs of New York City to get out the count” in 2020. Speakers will include representatives of the Association for a Better New York; Jeri Green, National Urban League; Juan Rosa, NALEO; Taissa Morimoto, National LGBTQ Task Force; Vanessa Gonzalez, The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights; Dennis Walcott, Queens Public Library; Julie Menin, NYC Census; Dr. Steven J. Corwin, NewYork-Presbyterian; and Vinny Alvares, Central Labor Council.

At 10 a.m. Thursday at the City Council, the Committee on General Welfare will hold an oversight hearing on food access, quality, and inspections at city homeless shelters. 

At 10 a.m. Thursday, the New York City Campaign Finance Board (CFB) will hold a public meeting at its Manhattan offices.

At the State Assembly on Thursday:
--At 10 a.m. Thursday in Albany, the Assembly Standing Committee on Children and Families and the Task Force on Women’s Issues will jointly hold a public hearing on family involvement in the child welfare and family court systems. 
--At 10:30 a.m. Thursday in Albany, the State Senate Standing Committee on Judiciary and the Assembly Standing Committee on Judiciary will jointly hold a public hearing on Court Consolidation. 

Friday, November 22
At 10 a.m. Friday, Mayor de Blasio may make his weekly appearance on WNYC’s The Brian Lehrer Show.

At the State Assembly on Friday:
--At 10 a.m. Friday in Albany, the Assembly Standing Committee on Aging will hold a public hearing on programs and services offered by area agencies on aging for older New Yorkers and their caregivers. 
--At 10:30 a.m. Friday in Manhattan, the Assembly Standing Committee on Local Governments, the Assembly Standing Committee on Corporations, Authorities and Commissions, and the Assembly Standing Committee on Oversight, Analysis and Investigation will jointly hold a public hearing on the Industrial Development Agencies( IDAs) and Local Development Corporations( LDCs).  
--At 11 a.m. Friday in Manhattan, the State Senate Standing Committee on Consumer Protection and the State Senate Standing Committee on Internet and Technology will jointly hold a public hearing on protecting consumer data and privacy on online platforms.

***
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 Max
@GothamGazette



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