Oct 21st - 5:11 pm
Judy Smith, the woman who inspired the political drama “Scandal” will speak at SUNY Polytechnic, which has been dealing with, well, a scandal.
At the Al Smith Dinner last night, Hillary Clinton took a jab at the feud between Gov. Andrew Cuomo and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio.
The U.S. Department of State posted to its website 112 documents recovered by the FBI during its investigation into Clinton’s private email server. In one email, the department censored several paragraphs that it determined contained foreign government information and deemed “confidential” — the lowest level of classification.
Newsday, which endorsed Mitt Romney in 2012, joins the very long list of editorial boards that have backed Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump.
De Blasio is defending shaking Trump’s hand at the Smith dinner last night.
“Sometimes a lady needs to be told when she’s being nasty,” says Texas Congressmen Brian Babin.
A former top aide to New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie testified in court the governor knew of the plan to close lanes on the George Washington Bridge well in advance. He also once threw a water bottle at her and cursed.
Queens elected officials are blasting Mayor de Blasio’s handling of New York City’s homelessness problem.
Tests of water in schools are showing high levels of lead.
In the 21st congressional district, Green Party candidate Matt Funiciello is sparring with Republican Elise Stefanik over the environment while a PAC that takes a “free market” approach to the issue is releasing a mail piece in the race.
Money that belongs to developmentally disabled people under the care of the state have been frequent targets for theft by workers overseeing the system, a report found.
NYPD Commissioner James O’Neill isn’t backing down after he said a police officer “failed” when he fatally shot to death a mentally ill woman who was swinging a bat.
Onondaga County Legislator Kathy Rapp will take a $10,000 county buyout to leave her elected position a year early.
There are allegations the election has been rigged … at the Seneca Nation in western New York.
Oct 21st - 4:02 pm
Republican state Senate hopeful Chris McGrath on Friday was endorsed by the New York City Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association.
McGrath, who was defeated by Democratic Sen. Todd Kaminsky in a special election in April to replace disgraced former Majority Leader Dean Skelos, is running against the incumbent as he seeks a full, two-year term.
“The men and women in our law enforcement community put their lives on the line on a daily basis and do a tremendous job to keep our residents safe, and protect our quality of life,” McGrath said.
“I’m proud of everything they do, and I look forward to working closely with them to ensure they have the resources they need to keep our communities safe from the threat of gang violence, terrorism and every day crime. As our next Senator I promise to always make the safety of our area my top priority.”
The New York City PBA has been a vocal presence in metropolitan area politics and their leader, Pat Lynch, has been an especially strident critic of Mayor Bill de Blasio. The mayor has repeatedly been used by Senate Republicans as a boogeyman of sorts against Democratic candidates running outside of the city.
“Your commitment to addressing the issues affecting New York City Police Officers is well recognized, and it will be an honor to have you representing our members in the Senate. We look forward to working with you toward our shared goal of a stronger, safer New York,” Lynch said.
Oct 21st - 2:29 pm
Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed legislation on Friday designed to crack down on the online advertising of multi-family dwellings in New York City — a measure seen aimed at limiting the popular online rental service Airbnb.
The bill’s approval is a win for affordable housing advocates who have decried the impact Airbnb has had in New York City. It is also a win for the Hotel Trades Council, a small but politically influential labor union that has backed efforts to regulate Airbnb.
And the legislation was backed by the Real Estate Board of New York, a monied and influential coalition of property owners in New York City.
“This legislation is an important step toward stopping illegal behavior that takes precious housing units off the market, threatens hotel workers’ jobs and hurts the quality of life for residents in our City’s multifamily buildings,” said John Banks, III, President of the Real Estate Board of New York. “We would like to thank the Governor as well as the members of the State Senate and Assembly for addressing this critical issue.”
Airbnb, meanwhile, has signaled on Friday afternoon it will file a lawsuit to challenge the measure.
“This is an issue that was given careful, deliberate consideration, but ultimately these activities are already expressly prohibited by law,” said Cuomo spokesman Rich Azzopardi in a statement.
“They also compromise efforts to maintain and promote affordable housing by allowing those units to be used as unregulated hotels, and deny communities significant revenue from uncollected taxes, the cost of which is ultimately borne by local taxpayers.”
Those who violate the law could face fines of up to $7,500.
The bill’s approval comes as Airbnb is planning to step up its campaign efforts in New York through a super PAC independent expenditure committee that has started running an ad blasting Republican Sen. Sue Serino’s vote for the measure.
At the same time, the company this week released a proposal that would regulate its operations to include an online registry of renters and further reforms to its business.
Oct 21st - 12:29 pm
Republican Sen. Terrence Murphy was endorsed Friday by the influential labor group 1199SEIU in his re-election bid.
Murphy, a freshman lawmaker first elected in 2014, faces Democrat Ali Boak next month for the Hudson Valley Senat seat.
In a statement, the union pointed to Murphy’s support for measure such as increasing the state’s minimum wage and the enactment of a paid-family leave program — proposals that had been pushed by the union, which has been hedging its endorsements for Senate candidates in potentially pivotal campaigns.
“Last session Senator Murphy stood with 1199SEIU members on important matters to healthcare workers, including increasing the minimum wage and securing the nation’s most comprehensive paid family leave program,” said Helen Schaub, the New York State Director of Police and Legislation.
“We look forward to continuing our work with him in the Senate to achieve our 1199SEIU Action Platform, which includes ensuring affordable education for all and protecting our natural resources; clean air, water and land. We are confident he will help to make certain that the voice of healthcare workers and all working families are heard in Albany.”
1199 President George Gresham has insisted the group doesn’t have “permanent allies” but “permanent issues” when they make their endorsements.
Oct 21st - 8:55 am
The three candidates in the 22nd congressional district squared off Thursday night in a televised debate on Time Warner Cable News at Colgate University.
Martin Babinec, an independent candidate, along with Republican Claudia Tenney and Democrat Kim Myers sparred on issues ranging from the economy, national security and economic development, as well as climate change, water quality and gun control.
The full, hour-long debate can be watched here.
The candidates are vying to replace Republican Rep. Richard Hanna who is retiring this year.
Oct 21st - 7:15 am
From the Morning Memo:
The independent expenditure committee backed by the New York State United Teachers union is increasing its efforts in the 60th Senate district, bolstering Democrat Amber Small in what is considering a linchpin for Republicans keeping control of the chamber.
Filings at the state Board of Elections show NYSUT’s Fund For Great Public Schools super PAC has invested in both mailers and TV ad production over the last week to knock Republican Chris Jacobs and boost Small’s chances in the battleground district.
The IE reported spending that includes $143,685 for a TV spot in the district opposing Jacobs’s candidacy. An additional $37,152 is being spent on anti-Jacobs mail from the committee, while $12,173 has been spent for mail promoting Small.
The super PAC’s spending comes as the state Republican Committee has complained to the Board of Elections over the PAC’s spending, alleging an illegal degree of coordination between the labor union and the independent expenditure committee — a claim that’s denied by NYSUT.
The spending also comes as the bulk of the attention for control of the Senate has been placed on Long Island races, specifically in Nassau County where Democrats hope to flip several GOP-held seats.
The 60th Senate district, however, is one of two Democratic-held seats Republicans hope to play offense through Election Day (Republicans are also pushing to unseat Democratic Sen. George Latimer in Westchester County with Republican Julie Killian).
Democratic Sen. Marc Panepinto is stepping down at the end of the year.
Oct 21st - 7:00 am
From the memo:
Buffalo Public School Board member Carl Paladino, who continues to be a staunch defender of Donald Trump even as fellow Republicans shy away from the increasingly controversial presidential nominee, is taking to the air – literally – to represent his candidate in Florida.
The honorary co-chair of Trump’s New York campaign will act as a surrogate for the candidate at the Council of the Great City Schools 60th annual fall conference, which is being held this week in Miami.
Paladino said more than 1,000 big city school leaders from across the country will be there. The debate, moderated by Dan Rather, will also be live-streamed at 2:30 p.m.
The Buffalo businessman will likely talk about privatizing public schools – a focus of his since becoming a school board member.
“The only solution for dysfunctional urban school districts which promote the urban cycle of poverty is to dismantle them and replace them with a competitive system based in charters, vouchers and tax credits,” Paladino said.
The surrogate for Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton is Mildred Otero, a former adviser for the nominee when she was a U.S. senator for New York. Otero currently is the vice-president of Leadership for Educational Equity.
The panel also includes superintendents from Miami-Dade County and Philadelphia and a school board vice president from Cincinnati.
Oct 21st - 6:04 am
Gov. Andrew Cuomo is in New York City and Providence, RI, where once of his three daughters attends Brown University. He has no public schedule.
At 8:30 a.m., LG Kathy Hochul delivers remarks at the Nassau Council of Chambers of Commerce awards breakfast, Crest Hollow Country Club, 8325 Jericho Trpk., Woodbury, Long Island.
At 8:45 a.m., state Education Commissioner MaryEllen Elia will address the Fall Conference of NYSATE/NYACTE, and speak about the need to prepare and support teachers and school leaders, Gideon Putnam Hotel, 24 Gideon Putnam Rd., Saratoga Springs.
At 9:30 a.m., Hochul addresses Sen. Todd Kaminsky’s Senior Health Fair, Rockville Centre Recreation Center, 111 North Oceanside Rd., Rockville Centre, Long Island.
Also at 9:30 a.m., NYC Council Speaker Melisa Mark-Viverito speaks at the National Conversation on Women’s Rights and Gender Equality, 1 Bowling Green, Manhattan.
At 10 a.m., NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio appears live on WNYC radio.
Also at 10 a.m., Queens Councilman Eric Ulrich, a Republican who is mulling a 2017 mayoral run, holds public demonstration to protest de Blasio’s homeless policies, City Hall steps, Manhattan.
Also at 10 a.m., state Comptroller Tom DiNapoli will release a new report on state farm-to-school initiatives at the Gov. George Clinton Elementary School, 100 Montgomery St., Poughkeepsie.
At 10:15 a.m., ederal Reserve Governor Daniel Tarullo speaks at Columbia Law School Conference on the New Pedagogy of Financial Regulation, 435 W 116th St., Manhattan.
At 11 a.m., advocates for people with developmental disabilities will hold a rally in front of the #bFair2DirectCare electronic billboard in Times Square to highlight the need to for the state to cover the cost of paying direct service providers a living wage, Manhattan.
At at 11 a.m., Rep. Nydia Velazquez, the Brooklyn Historical Society, the Brooklyn Heights Association, National Parks Service, Landmarks Preservation Commission and community members host event to celebrate fifty years of Brooklyn Heights’ designation as a National Historic Landmark and as New York City’s first Historic District, Brooklyn Historical Society, 128 Pierrepont St., Brooklyn.
At 11:15 a.m., Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino endorses Julie Killian for the 37th state Senate seat, Killian’s Yonkers campaign headquarters, 1043 Yonkers Ave., Yonkers.
At 1 p.m., state GOP Chair Ed Cox will be in Erie County in support of the GOP ticket and will hold a joint media availability with Erie County GOP Chair Nick Langworthy to discuss the remaining weeks of the 2016 election, Erie County GOP Headquarters, 715 Main St., Suite 102, Buffalo.
Also at 1 p.m., Sen. Jesse Hamilton and supporters hold press conference for kickoff and tour of “the Campus,” the first technology and wellness hub at a public housing site in the United States, P.S. 298/Brownsville Collaborative Middle School, Auditorium, 85 Watkins St., Brooklyn.
At 7:15 p.m., Hochul presents a Domestic Violence Awareness Month proclamation at Kathleen Mary House “Taste of New Beginnings” event
Lucarelli’s, 1830 Abbott Rd., Lackawanna.
Some of Donald Trump’s remarks at the Al Smith Dinner were biting, as he took the opportunity to poke fun at his opponent, Hillary Clinton. That effort largely fell flat, though the crowd laughed at his other jokes.
Clinton joked that she “took a break from my rigorous nap schedule to be here,” and got big laughs when she channeled Trump by saying he “looks at the Statue of Liberty and sees a four, maybe a five, if she loses the torch and tablet and changes her hair.”
Also booed at the dinner: NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio.
Trump said he’ll accept the election results of Nov. 8, but only if he’s on his way to the White House. “I would like to promise and pledge to all of my voters and supporters and to all of the people of the United States that I will totally accept the results of this great and historic presidential election — if I win,” he said at an Ohio rally.
The final debate between Clinton and Trump, which took place in Las Vegas earlier this week, drew 71.6 million viewers, according to Nielsen. That’s less than their record-breaking first debate, but more than the second.
Republican Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano and his wife surrendered to the FBI to face corruption charges in Long Island Federal Court. The 13-count indictment charges Mangano with selling out his position to a wealthy businessman in exchange for free vacations, meals and other gifts, and his wife with having a $450,000 little-to-no-show job at the businessman’s restaurant.
Asked about the charges against him, Mangano told reporters: “It’s ridiculous, but I can’t say any more. I’m going to continue to govern. I’m going to go to work. America’s the greatest country in the world. And you’ll have an opportunity to hear everything and decide for yourselves.”
The political ramifications of Mangano’s arrest could start with next month’s competitive state Senate elections and stretch into next year’s races for nearly all county and Oyster Bay town offices.
Newsday says while the charges brought against Mangano and Town of Oyster Bay Supervisor John Venditto by U.S. Attorney preet Bharara have not yet been proven, “the behavior alleged in the indictment is reprehensible and a betrayal of their oaths as public servants,” and said they should resign.
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie repeatedly called his New York counterpart, Andrew Cuomo, as the George Washington Bridge lane-closure scandal unfolded, complaining that New York officials were too aggressive in their efforts to uncover the purpose of the scheme. Both previously denied a report of one such conversation.
Rep. Chris Collins and Erie County Republican Chairman Nick Langworthy – normally among the region’s strongest supporters of Trump – said the nominee was wrong to raise the possibility that he won’t respect the results of the Nov. 8 election. It as a rare point of agreement for them with WNY Democrats.
Clinton solicited a $12 million donation from a government her State Department considered corrupt, then realized the “mess” it would cause to her presidential run, a newly leaked e-mail reveals.
NYC Council members are asking for an NYPD inspector general probe of how cops deal with the mentally ill after the fatal shooting of 66-year-old Deborah Danner in the Bronx.
AG Eric Schneiderman said his office doesn’t have the jurisdiction to investigate Danner’s death under an executive order issued by the governor last year.
While the statement from Schneiderman did not detail evidence in the case, his office’s decision not to pursue it suggested that investigators had found evidence that Danner was armed before she was shot in the bedroom of her home in the Castle Hill neighborhood.
De Blasio is still navigating the divide between officers who are skeptical of his leadership and a community angered by killings by the police.
Former NYC Council Speaker Christine Quinn, in her first major speech since leaving office three years ago, offered some suggestions for her erstwhile primary rival de Blasio to combat homelessness and refused to rule out a run for office again.
Oct 20th - 8:19 pm
Republican incumbent Rep. John Katko has broadened an already commanding lead in the NY-24 race, according to an exclusive Time Warner Cable/Siena College poll released this evening.
With three weeks to go before the election, Katko, a freshman Republican, is polling 23 points ahead of his Democratic challenger, former aide to U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand Colleen Deacon, in the Central New York district. A previous TWC News/Siena poll on the race in early October found Katko ahead by 19 points, leading Deacon 53-34.
Neither congressional candidate received particularly strong favorability ratings in the poll. When asked about Katko, 52 percent said they had a favorable opinion of the congressman.
Only 31 percent of voters have a favorable opinion Deacon. Nearly a third of the people polled said they didn’t know or didn’t have an opinion on Deacon, despite the significant number of TV ads – both positive and negative – that have been running in the district.
The NY-24 race is among a handful of the most competitive House contests in the country. The poll is good news for Katko, whom national Republicans have spent heavily to support in hopes of keeping his seat in GOP hands, since the district has flipped back and forth between the two major parties several times in recent years.
While the district appears to be leaning Republican in the congressional election, Democrats actually hold the advantage there in the presidential contest. If the election were held today, 44 percent of voters said they would vote for Hillary Clinton on the Democratic line, while 34 percent said they’d vote for Donald Trump.
That trend holds true in the U.S. Senate race, too. Incumbent Democratic Senator Chuck Schumer is polling 47 points ahead of his Republican challenger Wendy Long in the district.
Deacon and her Democratic allies have been trying hard to tie Katko to Trump. The congressman recently said the GOP nominee should “think seriously” about dropping out of the race following the revelation of his comments about sexually assaulting women in the now infamous 2005 Access Hollywood tape.
Katko also said he had decided that he could not vote for Trump under any circumstances, saying he’ll either write in a candidate on the presidential ballot line on Nov. 8 or vote for a to-be-determined third-party candidate.
The Republicans, meanwhile, have sought to portray Deacon as inexperienced and too closely tied to her fellow Democrats to be an independent representative for the closely divided district.
On October 18-19, pollsters asked 673 likely voters their preferences in this race. The poll has a margin of error of +/-4.1 percent.
Check out the entire poll here: 24th-congressional-district-poll
Oct 20th - 5:13 pm
Calling Hillary Clinton a “nasty woman” may have been the best thing Donald Trump has ever done for her campaign.
Women’s rights attorney Gloria Allred revealed the identity of another woman accusing Trump of “inappropriate sexual conduct”: Karena Virginia, a yoga teacher and “inspirational speaker” who says the nominee groped her during a chance encounter at the US Open in 1998.
NYC Mayor and Clinton supporter Bill De Blasio took aim at Rudy Giuliani in a CNN interview this morning, saying that his predecessor was growing “increasingly delusional.”
The Bronx District Attorney will investigate the fatal NYPD shooting of a mentally ill woman after state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman determined he has no jurisdiction over the case because the woman was armed with a bat when she was shot dead.
Melania Trump again sported a pussy-bow neckline at last night’s debate, sparking commentary and speculation about a potential message in her fashion choices.
There were two Trumps at the debate: The presidential candidate, and the possible future media mogul.
Republican congressional and state Senate candidates called on Nassau County Executive Edward Mangano and Oyster Bay Supervisor John Venditto to immediately resign — a move that came only hours after the two GOP officials were arrested on federal corruption charges.
Mangano reportedly does not plan to resign after being arrested on federal corruption charges this morning, and absent a guilty plea or conviction, he can’t be forced to do so.
The state has made one payment for manufacturing equipment at the SolarCity plant in Buffalo that’s been pending for months, but another payment had yet to be made as of Monday, according to a progress report on the construction.
Scott Rechler, Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s top Port Authority Board appointee, testified in the Bridgegate trial today that NJ Gov. Chris Christie and Cuomo talked about about a month after the Fort Lee lane closures – a claim that contradicts public comments both governors have made denying they ever discussed the issue.
President Obama defended the Affordable Care Act while also admitting it’s not perfect, insisting: “No law is.”
State IG Catherine Leahy Scott today released a report of an investigation into the systemic mismanagement and thefts of personal cash accounts for the developmentally disabled by state employees entrusted with their care.
A federal appeals court has affirmed the convictions of former state Senate Democratic Leader Malcolm Smith and Queens GOP official Vincent Tabone for scheming to get Smith’s name on the 2013 New York City Republican mayoral primary ballot.
Onondaga County officials were vague today on whether they would seek to recoup money paid to legislators under raises that were today deemed illegal but a judge’s ruling.
Syracuse University has named S.P. Raj the interim dean of the Martin J. Whitman School of Management. He replaces former Dean Kenneth Kavajecz, who was dismissed last month after he was arrested for patronizing a prostitute in the town of Salina.
Sen. John DeFrancisco is hoping state engineers reconsider an option for the reconstruction of the deteriorating Interstate 81 overpass, saying he thinks the extra money might be well worth a tunnel to siphon at least some of the traffic heading through the city.
As of late yesterday afternoon, independent expenditure committees had spent $5.42 million on this year’s State Senate general elections. Candidates of both parties have been supported at fairly similar rates: $2.44 million of this money has gone to Democrats, and $2.98 has backed Republicans.
The Court of Appeals has accepted a determination by the Commission on Judicial Conduct that Alan Simon, a judge in Ramapo, Spring Valley and Hillburn, should be removed from the bench for violations of judicial ethics.
Though his days in office are numbered, Acting District Attorney Michael J. Flaherty Jr. said he is considering whether to conduct a criminal investigation into the 2012 death of Richard Metcalf Jr. – as the state agency that regulates local jails urges him to do.
Donna Fernandes, who has guided the Buffalo Zoo to unprecedented growth since arriving in 2000, is retiring. She will step down as president and chief executive officer in the spring of 2017.
Midwood High School alumni – including former NY First Lady Matilda Cuomo – packed the Grand Prospect Hall on Saturday to celebrate the school’s 75th year as one of Brooklyn’s top-ranked public high schools. The governor’s mother, class of ’49, was honored at the event.
A prize-winning llama named Snow has gone missing during training exercises in Western New York, and now her owner is seeking help locating her from the public.