Road To Municipal Labor Settlements Paved With Uncertainty

Written by Richard Steier on . Posted in Labor/Unions, Spotlight

There was a distinct edge to Mayor Bill de Blasio’s voice when he said during his budget presentation, “The previous administration was given an artificially high level of credit for management.” He was referring to the labor-contract mess he inherited when Michael Bloomberg left office after a third term in which he created a negotiating logjam. Following his 2009 re-election Bloomberg insisted that the city could not afford to honor a bargaining pattern he had set the previous two years, under… [More]

SPOTLIGHT: The Roundtable

Written by City & State on . Posted in Spotlight

 Q: How will your past as a former union president inform your agenda as Labor Committee chair?  DM: My labor background will be invaluable to passing meaningful and effective legislation. … [T]o work together, we need to understand each other’s obligations and needs. [F]or unions and the city to work together requires openness to negotiation. I am intimately familiar with many sides of the debates that continue to live on and the ways in which the laws that we will… [More]

Arbitration Could Throw A Wrench In City Labor Settlements

Written by Nick Powell on . Posted in Labor/Unions, Spotlight

Throughout his campaign and time in office Mayor Bill de Blasio has artfully dodged publicly negotiating New York City’s expired contracts with its municipal unions. All along the mayor has mostly stuck to the same talking point in discussing how he will approach settling the contracts—the first great test of his administration— referring to the billions of dollars that could wind up added to the city’s ledger for salary increases and back pay as “the great unknown.” Adding to this… [More]

Scorecard: Casinos

Written by Jon Lentz on . Posted in Spotlight

CASINO SITING  Gov. Andrew Cuomo has laid out a timeline that could have at least some new casinos opening within a year. A siting committee would issue a request for casino applications in March, and bids would come in by June and be reviewed over the summer, with the assistance of an outside consultant. By early fall the winners would be announced. The five-member siting committee, which is made up of financial and real estate experts, already includes former state… [More]

Spotlight: Casinos

Written by Jon Lentz on . Posted in Spotlight

Agenda-CasinosGambling New York is on the verge of licensing a new wave of casinos, this time with Las Vegas-style gambling and table games—a step up from the slots at the state’s existing racetrack casinos—and allowing them in three upstate regions that are not on Native American land. Although New York City is off the table, the competition for one of the four upstate casino licenses has attracted a number of potential bidders, and Gov. Andrew Cuomo has laid out a timeline… [More]

As Potential Bidders Eye Casino Licenses, Timeline Could Play A Big Role

Written by Jon Lentz on . Posted in Spotlight

Gov. Andrew Cuomo wants to have casino bids in by June, the winners selected by this fall, and gamblers showing up at new or upgraded Las Vegas-style facilities in New York as soon as early next year. “Our challenge now is to make casinos a reality, make it happen, make it happen fast and make it happen correctly,” the governor said during his State of the State address. “Our current plan is March 2014 for the RFP to go out,… [More]


Written by Kristen Meriwether on . Posted in Health Care, Spotlight

Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s executive budget address included an impassioned plea to Washington: Approve New York State’s Medicaid waiver, which has been sitting in D.C. for nearly 18 months, or risk the closure of at least three Brooklyn hospitals—and possibly more statewide. “We have been propping up the system, frankly, for about 18 months while we have been waiting for the waiver, but we need HHS to act on the waiver now,” Cuomo said during the Jan. 21 address. “It is… [More]

Joint Venture

Written by City & State on . Posted in Health Care, Spotlight

By Allison Hibbs    When Gov. Andrew Cuomo came out in support of medical marijuana earlier this month, he announced a plan to use existing state legislation to make the drug available to a small number of severely ill patients. The shift sparked statewide interest and enthusiasm from advocates and lawmakers who are hoping that the move signifies a willingness to consider more robust legislative change—but the governor has made it clear that he wants to start small and move… [More]


Written by City & State on . Posted in Health Care, Spotlight

KEMP HANNON, New York State Senate Health Committee Chair: Q: You have been scrutinizing the state’s new healthcare exchange, which was set up as part of the federal healthcare reform. Do there need to be any changes, or is it working well?  KH: We had an oversight hearing with the state Senate Insurance Committee, and the idea was not to be critical, not to poke holes or anything like that. In fact, we waited until after the whole Obamacare act… [More]

SCORECARD: Healthcare

Written by City & State on . Posted in Health Care, Spotlight

LegislativePreview-HealthCare KEY PLAYERS    THE STATE  Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s top health officials are Nirav Shah, the state health commissioner, and Courtney Burke, the governor’s deputy secretary for health. Burke, who previously headed the Office for People with Developmental Disabilities, was named to the post this past summer, replacing James Introne. Jason Helgerson, the state’s Medicaid director, has spearheaded the governor’s Medicaid Redesign Team, and the governor has often touted the budget savings that have resulted from the group’s recommendations. In the… [More]