Author Archive

De Blasio, Labor Leaders Affirm Commitment to Increase Taxes to Pay for Universal Pre-K

Written by Nick Powell on . Posted in Blog, Budget/Taxes, Daily, Education, Features, Latest, News, News & Features

In a show of support for Mayor Bill de Blasio’s proposed universal preschool program, leaders of New York City’s largest and most powerful unions held a press conference with the mayor today firmly backing his plan to pay for the program through a tax increase on New Yorkers making more than $500,000 per year. “New York state has promised over the years to fund universal pre-k—for over 15 years now we’ve heard it—but has never provided the funding needed to… [More]

CITY COUNCIL 101: At Incoming Council Members’ Retreat, Speaker Rivals Give Media Relations Advice

Written by Nick Powell on . Posted in Blog, Daily, Features, Latest, News, Other News, Video

At Baruch College last month, several City Council members, including Speaker rivals Melissa Mark-Viverito and Daniel Garodnick, participated in a forum hosted by City & State and the Partnership for New York City giving advice to some of their freshmen colleagues. Council members Julissa Ferreras, Mark Weprin, and James Vacca joined Garodnick and Mark-Viverito on the panel, which, despite having the appearance of yet another Speaker’s race forum (Weprin and Vacca were speaker candidates at one time, while Ferreras was rumored to… [More]

James Clarifies Remarks Regarding Her Involvement In Dasani Series

Written by Nick Powell on . Posted in Latest, News, Video

During an interview last night on Inside City Hall, New York City Public Advocate Letitia James was asked about having Dasani Coates, the 11-year-old girl who was the subject of a New York Times series on homelessness in New York City, stand next to her during her inaugural speech yesterday. Host Errol Louis specifically pushed James on the conditions of the Auburn Family Residence homeless facility in James’ old City Council district in Brooklyn, which sheltered Coates and her family for years, including… [More]

On Inauguration Day, a New City Government Doubles Down on Progressive Vision

Written by Nick Powell on . Posted in Blog, Budget/Taxes, Daily, Economic Development, Education, Environment, Features, Government Operations, Health Care, Housing, News, Other News, Public Safety

A bitterly cold, gray New Year’s Day greeted New York City’s new government leaders on Wednesday afternoon in front of City Hall. The standard political party mix of Bruce Springsteen and various Motown and soul numbers thumped from the sound system, though if there were any dancing it was likely an attempt to keep blood flowing to the extremities. City and state dignitaries and several celebrities were in attendance, glad-handing, smiling through chattering teeth, and waiting patiently for the man… [More]

City & State TV: De Blasio Sworn In as Mayor

Written by Nick Powell on . Posted in Video

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, Public Advocate Letitia James and City Comptroller Scott Stringer stuck to the progressive message they campaigned on while taking shots at former Mayor Michael Bloomberg, Nick Powell reports. The speech was more or less what we expected. De Blasio doubled down on a lot of his campaign promises including to expand paid sick leave legislation, modify stop and frisk, build more affordable housing and most notably establish universal Pre-school for all New Yorkers.… [More]

Meet the City Council’s New Members

Written by Nick Powell on . Posted in News

Profiles by Jon Lentz, Morgan Pehme and Nick Powell Photos Courtesy of Council Members’ Websites and Facebook Pages Steven Matteo Vanessa Gibson Carlos Menchaca Ritchie Torres Helen Rosenthal Laurie Cumbo Mark Treyger Daneek Miller Andrew Cohen Antonio Reynoso Chaim Deutsch Corey Johnson Rafael Espinal Robert Cornegy Jr. Costa Constantinides Alan Maisel Paul Vallone Rory Lancman Ben Kallos Inez Barron Mark Levine… [More]

Union Leaders Mixed on Linn and Brezenoff Appointments

Written by Nick Powell on . Posted in Blog, Daily, Features, Government Operations, Heard Around Town, Labor/Unions, Latest, News

Two of Mayor-elect Bill de Blasio’s five latest appointments, Robert Linn, the city’s new director of labor relations, and Stanley Brezenoff, who will advise First Deputy Mayor Tony Shorris in an unpaid role, received a mixed response from some city union leaders who are hoping that the two government veterans will settle the outstanding municipal labor contracts with the city. Both Linn and Brezenoff worked under former Mayor Ed Koch in different roles, with Brezenoff serving as Koch’s deputy mayor… [More]

Council Spox Jamie McShane To Join REBNY

Written by Nick Powell on . Posted in Blog, Daily, Heard Around Town, Latest, News, News & Features, Other News

Jamie McShane, the longtime director of communications for the New York City Council, will join the Real Estate Board of New York in a similar capacity. McShane will become senior vice president of communications, a newly created management-level position, and will be REBNY’s point person in dealing with the media, REBNY President Steven Spinola announced in a statement. “Jamie brings to REBNY a tremendous level of experience dealing with communications and public policy,” Spinola said. “He will be an asset… [More]

Seddio Betrays Crowley and Heastie; De Blasio Goes To War With County Chairs Over Mark-Viverito

Written by Nick Powell on . Posted in Blog, Campaigns/Elections, Daily, Features, Government Operations, Latest, News, News & Features

Frank Seddio If there is one lesson to be learned in gaming out the City Council speaker’s race, it is that anything can happen, even at the last moment. History has shown that even when a Speaker candidate appears to have the votes to win, a mere change of heart or a last-minute backroom deal can swing the balance of power. In 1986, the City Council was ready to crown Brooklyn Councilman Samuel Horwitz the Speaker. Horwitz had lined up support from… [More]

EXCLUSIVE: Big 3 County Leaders Tell Councilmembers They Have Votes To Make Garodnick Speaker (UPDATED x4)

Written by Nick Powell on . Posted in News

Multiple sources have told City & State that the three Democratic county leaders, Rep. Joe Crowley of Queens, Assemblyman Carl Heastie of the Bronx, and Frank Seddio of Brooklyn have coalesced around Councilman Dan Garodnick for City Council Speaker. Councilman Eric Ulrich, when reached by phone, confirmed that the county leaders have been calling councilmembers this evening, hoping to crown Garodnick Speaker. “I have heard that,” Ulrich said, “I’ve received so many calls today about the Speaker that I’m sure one… [More]