Deputy Mayor for Twitter

Written by Jon Lentz on . Posted in Education, Government Operations, Health Care, News, Public Safety, Technology, Transportation

Wolfson takes to the Twittersphere to defend the Bloomberg administration When Mayor Michael Bloomberg is under attack, one trusty weapon in Deputy Mayor Howard Wolfson’s arsenal is the tweet. Wolfson, Bloomberg’s deputy mayor for government affairs and communications, has been garnering attention in recent months for taking to the Twittersphere to go after the administration’s critics, from elected officials like Public Advocate Bill de Blasio to journalists and news outlets like The New York Times. “I think it has the benefit… [More]

Computer Club

Written by City & State on . Posted in Other Features, Technology

By Chris Bragg, Andrew J. Hawkins, Jon Lentz, Adam Lisberg and Laura Nahmias Membership of the Computer Club exploded this year! It’s always had stalwarts like Gale Brewer and Bill Mahoney playing with keyboards and spreadsheets, but this was finally the year when everybody else got into the Internet. A lot of it is because of that rich kid Mike Bloomberg. He was waving his checkbook at every pocket protector and every pair of suspenders in the hallways. (Let’s hope… [More]

Twitter’s Odd Couple

Written by Laura Nahmias on . Posted in Other Features, Other News, Technology

They are the Statler and Waldorf of Long Island politics: Former Democratic State Sen. Craig Johnson (@HonCraigJohnson) and Republican Sen. Carl Marcellino (@Senator98), former adversaries who have found common ground teasing each other on Twitter. One day a few years ago in the Senate Chamber, Johnson learned Marcellino’s Twitter handle during a session lull in, and “immediately friended him,” he said. “He started leaving messages on Twitter,” Marcellino recalled. “I wasn’t into it all that much then.” Marcellino has since… [More]

Scorecard: New York Manufacturing

Written by City & State on . Posted in Economic Development, Energy, Government Operations, Labor/Unions, Spotlight, Technology

THE ISSUES Energy costs Energy policy and prices have a disproportionate effect on the manufacturing industry’s ability to compete in the global marketplace. New York has long had some of the highest energy costs in the country. Some industrial electricity prices are 32 percent higher than the national average. Policy initiatives like Recharge New York, which allows manufacturers and business owners to apply for low-cost energy allocations from the government, are expected to help, but some advocates say the government… [More]

Expert Roundtable: Manufacturing

Written by Andrew J. Hawkins on . Posted in Economic Development, Energy, Government Operations, Labor/Unions, Spotlight, Technology

Kenneth Adams President and CEO, Empire State Development Corporation Q: What is the state’s manufacturing future? Kenneth Adams: There’s a great history of manufacturing in the state. What you see today are manufacturers whose competitive advantage is in being a technology-oriented sector. So they get more specialized, but they aren’t necessarily household names. Now, my role is so much broader. I see all types of manufacturing companies. The strength of so many of these manufacturers—in many cases they are taking… [More]

Utility Players

Written by City & State on . Posted in Energy, Environment, Spotlight, Technology

Public utilities are some of the most heavily regulated companies in the nation—and also some of the most stable. State regulators typically approve their rates, profit margins and service standards after a quasi-judicial process of weighing testimony from the companies, their customers and consumer advocates. Yet the process has been evolving in New York, where the state Public Service Commission is increasingly trying to set a regulatory scheme that reaches beyond individual rate cases to consider long-term issues about how… [More]

Trash And Burn

Written by City & State on . Posted in Energy, Environment, Technology

Each day, the garbage trucks line up and rumble into a huge, boxlike building that towers over the surrounding housing subdivisions, shopping centers and fast-food joints. Once inside, the trucks dump their garbage, which is scooped into a vast concrete pit. A mechanical claw above the pit descends into the mounds of trash and collects enough to fill a single truck, lifts it up and ferries over to one side, then dumps it into a chute to be burned—and ultimately… [More]

Master Of The @NYSenate

Written by Laura Nahmias on . Posted in Government Operations, Technology

In the final, confusing days of Albany’s legislative session, the @NYSenate Twitter feed explained what was happening when no one else in the Capitol seemed to know the answers. The man behind the curtain was 28-year-old Zack Hutchins, the Senate’s director of new media. What follows is an edited transcript. The Capitol: The Senate ran on social media this session. How do you push the senators to get involved with applications like Facebook and Twitter? Zack Hutchins: I wouldn’t characterize… [More]

Mayor Of William’s Town

Written by Laura Nahmias on . Posted in Government Operations, Technology

In the real world, Assemblyman William Boyland Jr. represents a tough corner of Brooklyn and is under indictment on corruption and bribery charges. But most days this year, Boyland goes to another place, a virtual place, where he’s the mayor of his own thriving city—William’s Town. The place is CityVille, a Facebook game where users create their own city. And Boyland doesn’t just play the game on his personal time. A comparison of Boyland’s Facebook activity with a record of… [More]

Hydrofracking Bonanza—For Lobbyists

Written by City & State on . Posted in Economic Development, Energy, Environment, Government Operations, Technology

“Southern Tier” locals point south to Bradford, Pa. You can’t buy a case of Rolling Rock there anymore without hearing tales of overnight “shale-ionaires.” Yet while hydraulic fracturing gas drilling in the Marcellus Shale—known as “hydrofracking”—has set off an economic gold rush in the Keystone State, its impact so far in the Empire State has been a political gold rush in Albany. Lobbying data on file at the Commission on Public Integrity shows a growing interest in New York by… [More]