Study Says Eliminating Estate Tax Would Be Big Boost For New York

Written by Matthew Hamilton on . Posted in Budget/Taxes, Features, Heard Around Town, News

What would happen if New York joined the majority of states that don’t have estate taxes? An analysis from the Beacon Hill Institute included in a report on the tax from the Empire Center shows a complete phase-out of the tax would boost the state’s gross domestic product by billions. Gov. Andrew Cuomo has proposed raising the current threshold from $1 million to the federal benchmark of more than $5 million by 2019. Though the Empire Center says that would… [More]

Is Observer Piece Hitting Schneiderman Trump’s Revenge?

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

Is Donald Trump about to make good on his threat to “get even” with Attorney General Eric Schneiderman? The New York Observer will publish a lengthy profile of Schneiderman tomorrow that sources say will serve as payback for the lawsuit the attorney general filed against Trump University. Trump’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, is the publisher of the Observer. “It’s been clear for months that Donald Trump ordered up a hit piece in his son-in-law’s newspaper to retaliate against Schneiderman for bringing a… [More]

Study Shows That Raising Minimum Wage Won’t Hurt State Economy

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

Mayor Bill de Blasio’s appeal to Albany for home rule control over New York City setting its own minimum wage during his State of the City speech Monday has made significant waves, despite Gov. Andrew Cuomo all but shooting it down, by saying the proposal could cause “chaos” throughout the state. Despite Cuomo’s ambivalence, a group of elected officials, including City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, City Comptroller Scott Stringer and Public Advocate Letitia James will hold a rally at City Hall… [More]

Moreland Commission Hasn’t Met In 2014; Rice Might Not Be Replaced

Written by Jon Lentz on . Posted in Features, Heard Around Town, News, Other News, Trials/Hearings

Nassau County District Attorney Kathleen Rice’s decision to run for Congress prompted her to step down as one of the three co-chairs of the governor’s Moreland Commission on Public Corruption. Asked on Wednesday if he plans to replace Rice, Gov. Andrew Cuomo suggested that a new co-chair would be found but left open the possibility that there would be no replacement. “We are looking,” the governor said during a Q&A with reporters. “If we find a good one—we’re looking for… [More]

Heating Up Scaffold Law Fight, Moya Introduces Bill to Open Insurers’ Books

Written by Jon Lentz on . Posted in Features, Heard Around Town, Labor/Unions, News, Real Estate/Construction

A day after friends and foes of the state’s Scaffold Law descended on Albany to lobby lawmakers, Gov. Andrew Cuomo reiterated which way he leans in the debate over the controversial legislation. “I would be open to reforms to the Scaffold Law,” Cuomo told reporters on Wednesday, without going into specifics. The law holds property owners and developers of construction projects liable for worker injuries if they fail to provide the proper safety equipment, although critics claim that it lets… [More]

Q Poll: Clinton and Cuomo Would Both Top Christie for President

Written by Matthew Hamilton on . Posted in Campaigns/Elections, Features, Heard Around Town, News

In a potential 2016 presidential primary fight between heavyweight New York Democrats, the latest Quinnipiac poll shows that Hillary Clinton holds the edge over Gov. Andrew Cuomo—at least in terms of favorability. Clinton holds a 65-30 percent total favorability rating and leads in every other category, except among Republicans. Cuomo holds a 59-28 total favorability rating. Voters were also asked who would be their presidential pick between Clinton and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, and between Cuomo and Christie. Christie… [More]

Klein Waffles on Holding the Line on Pre-K Tax

Written by Matthew Hamilton on . Posted in Budget/Taxes, Education, Features, Heard Around Town, News

When state Senate Republican Leader Dean Skelos shot down New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio’s pre-kindergarten plan on Monday, state Sen. Jeff Klein, Skelos’ governing partner, issued a statement saying that he would not pass a state budget that fails to include the proposal, calling it “the only one that provides New York City with the funding it needs to achieve that goal.” But by Tuesday, he seemed more flexible on de Blasio’s plan, which requires a tax on… [More]

Upload of Student Data Delayed Again

Written by Matthew Hamilton on . Posted in Education, Features, Heard Around Town, News, Technology

State Education Commissioner Dr. John King The state’s upload of sensitive data to inBloom is being delayed again, Education Department Commissioner John King announced Monday, marking the second delay since January. “We’re going to continue our work on that data project, but we’re going to delay the sharing of names and addresses so that we can work with the Legislature to put in place additional security and privacy protections related to third party providers,” King said during a press conference primarily to announce Common Core adjustments… [More]

Ball and Former HBO CEO Push “Jobs For Heroes”

Written by Jon Lentz on . Posted in Budget/Taxes, Features, Heard Around Town, News, Other News

This afternoon state Sen. Greg Ball is stepping up his push to pass “Job For Heroes” legislation, which sets aside 5 percent of state contracts for businesses owned by disabled military veterans, with a lobbying day in Albany. Ball and others want to see the measure added to the state budget, and among those joining the lawmaker is Bill Nelson, a former HBO CEO, Vietnam veteran and board member of the local chapter of Vietnam Veterans of America. “The service-disabled veterans are the… [More]

Inner Circle Set To Poke Fun At De Blasio Next Month

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

It’s that time of year again—The Inner Circle, an organization of New York City political journalists, has announced the date of its annual revue poking fun at federal, state, and local elected officials. This year’s event, to be held on March 22nd at the New York Hilton Midtown, is titled “Stuck with de Bill”, and is Mayor Bill de Blasio’s initiation into the inglorious annals of Inner Circle tradition. The occasionally cringe-worthy production includes a variety of satirical musical theater-inspired… [More]