Liz Benjamin

This user hasn't shared any biographical information


Posts by Liz Benjamin

Here and Now

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is in Albany with no public schedule.

At 8:45 a.m., LG Kathy Hochul kicks off University at Buffalo’s Martin Luther King Jr. day of service with student volunteers, University at Buffalo, North Student Union, Putnam Way, Amherst.

At 9:30 a.m., the New York State observance of the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. will be held, with OTDA Commissioner Samuel Roberts presenting remarks, Empire State Plaza Convention Center, Albany.

Also at 9:30 a.m., Hochul recognizes the contributions of MLK Jr. at the New Hope Baptist Church scholarship breakfast, Buffalo Convention Center, 153 Franklin St., Buffalo.

At 10 a.m., Bronx Borough President Rubén Díaz Jr. honors MLK’s memory with a day of prayer and service, Trinity Baptist Church, 808 E. 224th St., the Bronx.

Also at 10 a.m., Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer, former Assemblyman Keith Wright, former Gov. David Paterson and other elected officials attend P.S. 175’s Martin Luther King Jr. celebration, 175 W. 134th St., Manhattan.

At 10:15 a.m., Brewer speaks at Community School District 5 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. celebration, P.S. 175, 175 W. 134th St., Manhattan.

At 10:30 a.m., NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio delivers remarks at a Martin Luther King Jr. Day celebration at the Brooklyn Academy of Music keynoted by Black Lives Matter activist Opal Tometi, 30 Lafayette Ave., Brooklyn, 116 St. Felix St., Brooklyn.

At 11:30 a.m., Brewer speaks at Baptist Ministers Conference of NY and Vicinity’s Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. service, Convent Avenue Baptist Church, West 145th Street and Convent Avenue, Manhattan.

At 12:15 p.m., de Blasio delivers remarks at the Baptist Ministries Conference MLK day of service, Covent Ave. Baptist Church, 420 W 145th St., Manhattan.

At 1 p.m., de Blasio delivers remarks at the National Action Network’s Annual Martin Luther King Day forum, House of Justice, 106 W 145th St., Manhattan.

At 3:30 p.m., New York City mayoral candidate and Queens state Sen. Tony Avella, New York City is Not For Sale and the Citywide Alliance Against Displacement host a Martin Luther King Jr. Day rally to end racism and protect neighborhoods facing displacement, City Hall, Manhattan.


President-elect Donald Trump said he is nearing completion of a plan to replace President Obama’s signature health-care law with the goal of “insurance for everybody,” while also vowing to force drug companies to negotiate directly with the government on prices in Medicare and Medicaid.

Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, while acknowledging that some Americans “don’t like” the health care law and continuing to call for universal coverage, pledged before a crowd of thousands in Michigan to fight Republican efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act. He appeared with Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer.

With eager anticipation, the Kremlin is counting the days to Trump’s inauguration and venting its anger at Obama’s outgoing administration, no holds barred.

Obama, in an interview on CBS’ “60 Minutes” last night, urged his successor to not erode “certain institutional traditions,” as the real estate mogul looks to leave his own mark on the Oval Office.

Trump blasted outgoing CIA Director John Brennan on Twitter after Brennan said Trump does not have a “full understanding” of Russia’s power and threat to the world.

Blacks around the country have reacted to Trump’s high-profile feud with civil rights icon Rep. John Lewis of Georgia with fury, and the subject has dominated social media and discussions among black activists.

The White House press corps was stunned by reports of a proposal by the Trump administration to eject reporters from their home in the West Wing — a move that, if carried out, would uproot decades of established protocol whereby journalists are allowed to work in the White House close to senior officials.

Shares in German carmakers BMW, Daimler and Volkswagen fell after Trump warned he will impose a border tax of 35 percent on vehicles imported from abroad to the U.S. market.

Trump praised Britain’s decision to leave the European Union, and predicted other countries would follow its lead. “I think Brexit is going to end up being a great thing,” he told The Times of London.

Andrew F. Puzder, the head of the Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s restaurant chains who is being considered for labor secretary, may soon be tasked with enforcing the very rules his business has been accused of violating.

The Clinton Global Initiative has informed the New York Department of Labor that it intends to lay off its 22 employees on April 15, 2017. The reason given is “discontinuation” of its existence.

Adam Parkhomenko, the co-founder of “Ready for Hillary” and a lifelong supporter of the defeated Democratic presidential candidate, is being endorsed by three former chairmen of the Democratic National Committee for a role in the party’s leadership.

Legendary journalist Bob Woodward clashed with his former “Watergate” reporting partner, Carl Bernstein, over the intelligence briefing of Trump on the salacious allegations contained in an unverified dossier of opposition research.

You knew this was coming.

Protesters staged a cough-in at the Trump International Hotel and Tower restaurant yesterday to rail against the proposed repeal of the Affordable Care Act.

Civil rights advocates reacted with dismay over the Martin Luther King Day weekend to reports that the Obama administration will not take action to charge or clear police in Eric Garner’s videotaped 2014 choking death before leaving office this week.

In a Martin Luther King Day column for the Daily News, Gov. Andrew Cuomo argued that the crusade for justice started by the legendary civil rights leader is not over, and said finishing it requires righting wrongs in the justice system.

Cuomo is proposing legislation to make a series of changes, including allowing judges to consider whether a defendant poses a risk to the community when they set bail.

Some of New York’s trailblazing black leaders in state government say while they are sad to see Obama leaving office, his inspiration as the country’s first black president will continue to guide them.

More >

The Weekend That Was

A little programming note before we get to the headlines.

For those of you in the CapTon viewing area, there is NO show tomorrow night due to the MLK holiday. We will, however, be keeping an eye out for budget-related news (and anything else) for you here on the blog, should anything break.

Expected a slightly truncated morning memo and light blogging, barring said breaking news.

And now, on the with the headline show…

Sen. Bernie Sanders suggested today he wouldn’t be opposed to seeing FBI Director James Comey resign, due to fallout over his decision to reopen an investigation into Hillary Clinton’s private email server just days before the 2016 election.

Outgoing CIA Director John Brennan ripped into Donald Trump for “talking and tweeting” about possibly easing sanctions against Russia, saying the president-elect lacks a full understanding of the threat Moscow poses to the United States.

Trump lashed out at Rep. John Lewis on Saturday after the civil rights icon said he doesn’t view Trump as a “legitimate president.”

The confrontation threatened to trigger a broader boycott of the Jan. 20 inauguration by Democratic lawmakers – including a number of New York House members – already on the fence about attending.

House Democrats from New York who have turned down inauguration invitations include Bronx Rep. Jose Serrano, Brooklyn Rep. Nydia Velazquez, Manhattan Rep. Jerrold Nadler and Brooklyn Rep. Yvette Clark.

NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio, the Rev. Al Sharpton and celebrities including Mark Ruffalo, Michael Moore and Rosie Perez are planning to rally New Yorkers to stand up to Trump on the eve of his inauguration.

Trump canceled his holiday visit to the Smithsonian Museum of African American History and Culture — losing a chance for much-needed goodwill after his feud with Lewis.

Former New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson said he was concerned about Secretary of State nominee Rex Tillerson’s ties to Russia, suggesting Trump should have tapped former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani for the job.

BuzzFeed editor-in-chief Ben Smith said he has no regrets about publishing an unverified dossier alleging Russia has compromising information on Trump.

As the candidates for chairman of the DNC gathered in Arizona for a forum, they wrestled with a vexing question: how to confront the asymmetrical political warfare of Trump. “If you try to go tweet-to-tweet with him, more often than not you’re not going to succeed,” said Labor Secretary and Buffalo native Thomas Perez, warning about going to “a knife fight with a spoon.”

The incoming Trump administration is considering giving the White House press corps the boot amid right-wing vilification of journalists.

Ivanka Trump hosted a secret dinner party last Thursday night at Wendi Murdoch’s apartment with a guest list packed full of powerful businesswomen.

Advocates for substance-abuse treatment are hoping to protect the insurance coverage provided by the Affordable Care Act by lobbying Republican legislators in states hit hard by the opioid addiction crisis.

Disgraced ex-Rep. Vito Fossella, a Staten Island Republican, has begun co-hosting a pro-Trump talk show on cable TV in what some political observers say could be his first steps toward a political comeback.

A new pastime – at least for some of her fans – Hillary Clinton spotting.

Cuomo dismissed chatter about a prospective 2020 presidential bid, saying “the rumor is flattering, even if not true,” and adding: “I’m running for reelection as governor in 2018. I hope that I am blessed by the people of this state with a chance to continue to serve.”

The NY Post isn’t buying it, editorializing: “New York needs to invest in the future — its own future. Increasingly, it looks like Cuomo is really investing in his own.”

Cuomo has a plan to shake loose some of properties he sees as holding back development of Niagara Falls as a premier tourist destination. He wants the state to buy and help redevelop vacant buildings, empty land or other parcels within walking distance of the waterfalls.

The new deal on tax cuts to incentivize affordable housing construction by downstate developers isn’t called 421-a, but rather “Affordable New York.”

An attorney hired to file a formal petition for Carl Paladino’s removal from the Buffalo Board of Education said he will provide his legal opinion and recommendations to the board for a possible vote next week.

Another Upstate New York political official – St. Lawrence County Republican legislator Joel L. LaPierre – is facing criticism for posting a controversial, anti-Obama message on Facebook.

Assemblyman Michael P. Kearns, the only state legislator in New York elected on both the Democratic and Republican tickets, is considering a run for Erie County clerk this year.

A long-running feud between the Williamsville school chief, Scott G. Martzloff, and the district’s teachers union has reached a pivotal point.

Niagara County is planning major efforts in 2017 to fight the opioid epidemic and clean up polluted former industrial sites. County Legislature Chairman W. Keith McNall will detail those plans and others in his State of the County address at the Legislature meeting at 7 p.m. Tuesday.

New York City education officials said suspensions would be significantly reduced, but not eliminated as an option, for children in kindergarten through second grade under new draft rules released Friday.

The first of hundreds of cats quarantined by NYC amid a bird flu outbreak were sprung from their cages on Saturday.

Birds took the blame for bringing down the jetliner that “Sully” Sullenberger landed on the Hudson River eight years ago this weekend. They have been paying for it with their lives ever since.

Schenectady Mayor Gary McCarthy won’t face any charges over an episode in which he followed and blocked off a driver, and she called 911 alarmed about what was happening.

A second officer has been suspended from a position in the Syracuse Teachers Association while an outsider investigates the scandal, officials said.

Mayor Stephanie Miner has a six-figure campaign chest, despite the fact that she’s not up for reelection this fall. This weekend, she hosted her annual Mayor’s Ball fundraiser to add to that total, with tickets starting at $300, spurring questions about why she’s still raising money.

A container terminal in New York Harbor is preparing to accept reservations for trucks to pick up or drop off cargo, in an effort to reduce congestion in the East Coast’s busiest port complex.

Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus is folding up its big tent for good in May after an epic 146-year run.

Bob Dylan would surely still recognize the low-ceilinged room in Caffe Lena where he played a couple of gigs almost 60 years ago. The iconic coffeehouse has undergone a $2 million upgrade and is now re-opened.

The story behind 15 iconic brands established in upstate NY.


Environmental regulators issued a final decision today to keep intact tougher fuel-economy standards, rushing to lock in one of President Barack Obama’s signature climate policies a week before Trump assumes office.

The head of the D.C. National Guard, Maj. Gen. Errol R. Schwartz, said he has been ordered removed from his command effective Jan. 20, 12:01 p.m. – just as Trump is sworn in as president. His forced departure will come in the midst of the presidential inauguration that he has spent months helping plan.

Workers preparing for the inauguration have taped over the name of the company — “Don’s Johns” — that has long supplied portable restrooms for major outdoor events.

U.S. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer criticized House Oversight Committee chairman Jason Chaffetz for threatening to subpoena the head of the independent Office of Government Ethics over the official’s treatment of Trump.”

A number of House Democrats left a confidential briefing on Russian hacking fuming over the actions of FBI Director James Comey and convinced he’s unfit to lead the agency.

U.S. Sens. Bernie Sander and Schumer will attend a health care rally with Michigan Democrats in suburban Detroit on Sunday in blue-collar Macomb County, where Trump performed well in his surprise win over Hillary Clinton.

New York City fast food workers, union leaders and Council members rallied in front of a federal Labor Department office to demand that Trump drop his nominee to head the agency—minimum wage critic and Hardees/Carl’s Jr. chain CEO Andrew Puzder.

The confirmation hearing for Puzder has been pushed back – perhaps until February.

Jenna Bush Hager and Barbara Bush wrote a letter to Sasha and Malia Obama as the two prepare to leave the White House. The Bush twins also offered the Obama girls some words of wisdom when their father first took office in 2009, noted Vanity Fair.

Ithaca Mayor Svante Myrick is adding a new line to his resume, taking over a leadership position at the liberal think-tank People for the American Way.

NYC Republican mayoral candidate Paul Massey announced that his campaign had raised more than $1.6 million in the latest six-month filing period, which officials in his campaign labeled a record for a January filing

Steven McDonald, a New York Police Department detective who touched the world by forgiving the shooter who left him paralyzed 30 years ago, died on Tuesday. He was remembered at his funeral today.

The state budget process begins in full Tuesday — the last day for the governor to submit his executive proposal — but state Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan expressed early confidence that this year’s budget will be on-time — though not without battles.

Confused about the state’s new window tinting law? The DMV has you covered with a new educational video.

A day after the first reporting deadline, only five political consultants had registered with the state as part of a new transparency measure on which New York is spending $1 million to set up.

The U.S. Mint is celebrating its 225th anniversary by minting a commemorative coin which depicts Lady Liberty as an African American for the first time.

The U.S. Navy has awarded Lockheed Martin’s plant in suburban Syracuse a contract to develop a new electronic warfare system for its MH-60 Seahawk helicopters to use in safeguarding ships against missile attacks.

Sexual assaults, harassment and sexism have been documented at the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy for almost a decade, both on campus and during the mandatory Sea Year training that is the school’s hallmark program, a review of public records by Newsday shows.

Here and Now

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is in Albany with no public schedule.

At 8:30 a.m., LG Kathy Hochul highlights the governor’s 2017 State of the State proposals at the Long Island Association State of the Region Breakfast, Crest Hollow Country Club, 8325 Jericho Trnpk., Long Island. (Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan is also featured).

Also at 8:30 a.m., the Manhattan Chamber of Commerce hosts a chairman’s breakfast with U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, Infor, 641 Sixth Ave., Manhattan.

At 9:30 a.m., NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio will attend the funeral of NYPD Detective Steven McDonald, St. Patrick’s Cathedral, 5th Ave., Manhattan.

At 10 a.m., NYC Councilman Donovan Richards and Waters Edge residents call on The Briarwood Organization to fix homes that have suffered post-construction issues, 105 Beach 61st St., Arverne, Queens.

Also at 10 a.m., the New York Convention Center Development Corporation holds a directors meeting, ESDC, 633 Third Ave., Manhattan.

At 11 a.m., workers on strike at the Momentive chemical plant in Waterford travel to Apollo Global Management headquarters in New York City to demand private equity magnate Leon Black negotiate a fair contract in good faith, 260 Hudson River Rd., Waterford.

At 11:30 a.m., NYC HPD Commissioner Vicki Been, Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr., City Councilman Rafael Salamanca and others attend the groundbreaking for Bronx Commons affordable housing development and music venue, Brook Avenue and E. 163rd Street, the Bronx.

At noon, Sen. George Amedore and Assemblymember Patricia Fahy will announce legislation that will support New York’s craft beverage industry with a focus on farm distillers, Albany Distilling Company, 78 Montgomery St., Albany.

Also at noon, NYC Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, City Council members Elizabeth Crowley and Margaret Chin and others announce the “21 by 21” initiative to recruit and support women running for elected office, The Knockdown Center, 52-19 Flushing Ave., Queens.

At 1 p.m., Assemblyman Andrew Hevesi, a coalition of faith leaders, elected officials and advocates for the homeless will deliver 25,000 letters from people across New York demanding Cuomo keep his promise to fund thousands of units of supportive housing for the homeless, 3rd floor, stat Capitol, Albany.

At 1:30 p.m., de Blasio gets minority-and women-owned business enterprises, City Hall Rotunda, Manhattan.

At 2 p.m., de Blasio holds a public hearing on, and subsequently signs into law, Intros. 1314 and 1415, Blue Room, City Hall, Manhattan.

At 4 p.m., labor and community activists gather outside Trump Tower to declare healthcare a human right and call for an “improved Medicare for all” plan, 725 5th Ave., Manhattan.


Vice President Joe Biden broke down in tears as President Obama surprised “my brother” with the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the country’s highest civilian honor, during a White House ceremony yesterday.

With a week left in Obama’s tenure, the U.S. Department of Justice struck an agreement with Baltimore aimed at rooting out endemic unconstitutional practices in the city’s Police Department.

The Obama administration has ended the Clinton-era policy known as “wet foot, dry foot,” which allows Cubans special immigration status just days before he leaves office.

Turkey’s media-skeptic leader, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who has gained notoriety for cracking down on his country’s press core, has hailed Trump for putting CNN’s Jim Acosta “in his place.”

The Justice Department’s inspector general has launched an investigation into how the head of the FBI and his deputy handled probes into Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton – another tumultuous development for the nation’s premier law-enforcement agency.

The Republican chairman of the House Oversight Committee, Jason Chaffetz of Utah, issued a stern letter, including a veiled threat of an investigation, to the federal government’s top ethics monitor, who this week had questioned Trump’s commitment to confront his potential conflicts of interest.

The fact that former NYC Mayor Rudy Giuliani is getting a cybersecurity advisor role and not the secretary of state post that he coveted reflects just how far he has fallen in the Trump universe.

Former Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson defended his experience and credentials to serve as the nation’s new housing secretary, turning to his life story to show that he understands the needs of the country’s most vulnerable.

Though it’s billed as the main event, Trump’s inauguration ceremony may take a back seat to the protest denouncing his presidency, including an estimated 200,000 women expected to participate in the Women’s March on Washington.

Experts in the medical and scientific communities are condemning the news that Robert F. Kennedy Jr. has been tapped by Trump to chair a presidential commission on vaccine safety.

The Environmental Protection Agency accused Fiat Chrysler of installing secret software that allowed more than 100,000 of its diesel vehicles to emit pollutants above legal levels.

The U.S. Justice Department announced it filed a motion to join a lawsuit against the New York City Board of Elections, alleging that the board’s Brooklyn office violated federal voter registration law by erasing more than 117,000 Brooklyn voters from the rolls before the primary election simply because they had not voted in previous elections.

After the governor’s helicopter was forced to make an emergency landing when it filled with smoke en route from Albany to NYC, the state comptroller might have had a change of heart about signing off on a new $12.5 million Sikorsky S-76D helicopter for the State Police.

This most recent incident, which is under state investigation, was only the latest in a series of safety scares on a state plane or helicopter, said more than a dozen state staffers familiar with the fleet.

Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino bashed his rival Cuomo’s policies at a business breakfast, calling several recent announcements from Albany “fake news.” He also used a fake Russian accent to mock the governor.

Public authorities in New York have been on a borrowing binge — racking up $267 billion in total debt or $13,487 for every resident of the state, according to a report released by the state comptroller’s office.

NY State of Health, the state’s Obamacare exchange, has extended its enrollment deadline by three days for coverage beginning Feb. 1, in response to high consumer demand, as Congress seeks to undo the federal law that established the online market.

Bill Hammond: “The latest enrollment numbers publicized by New York’s Obamacare exchange paint an incomplete and misleading picture of what’s really happening in the state’s health insurance marketplace.”

Advocates will drop off thousands of printed emails at Cuomo’s office today to mark the one-year anniversary of the 2016 State of the State address in which he first proposed $20 billion in investments to tackle the state’s housing and homelessness needs.

Passing the time at a stoplight or in traffic by sending a text or playing a quick game of Candy Crush might soon be outlawed under a proposal from Cuomo. Buried deep in the State of the State book are proposals aimed at changing roadway behavior in an effort to cut down on the number of highway fatalities.

Two town supervisors in Ulster County, one of whom leads a countywide group of municipal leaders, are pushing back against a recommendation by Cuomo regarding counties sharing services with municipalities.

In her final State of the City address, Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner said the city will stand defiantly against an impending federal crackdown on undocumented immigrants. Syracuse is now and will remain a sanctuary city for immigrants, she declared.

More >


President Barack Obama surprised an emotional Vice President Joe Biden by presenting him the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation’s highest civilian honor, during a White House ceremony.

The U.S. Justice Department inspector general announced that it will launch an investigation into the FBI’s conduct leading up to the 2016 election.

President-elect Donald Trump’s Twitter account is a “security disaster waiting to happen,” according to security experts, who say it should be protected with the same technology used by the military to shield nuclear launch codes.

During the third day of confirmation hearings on Capitol Hill, a theme emerged: Many of Trump’s cabinet nominees have serious disagreements with him on policy

A bevy of Oscars front-runners — including Emma Stone, Matthew McConaughey, Natalie Portman, Taraji P. Henson, Amy Adams and Chris Pine — has a message ahead of next week’s inauguration of Donald Trump: “I Will Survive.”

Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani announced that he will be heading up a new cyber security committee for Trump. (It’s unclear if Giuliani will be compensated for this role).

Charlie King, the Mercury Public Affairs lobbyist and former head of the state Democratic Party, is planning another one-man protest, this time targeting new U.S. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer for his lack of black staffers.

Lots of New Yorkers are still waiting for their STAR rebate and tax freeze checks, according to legislators and local assessors who say the calls about the delays have not abated.

While a federal lawsuit unfolds, Attorney General Eric Schneiderman has agreed not to enforce certain provisions of a new state ethics law passed requiring charitable organizations giving money to lobbying campaigns to disclose far more of their donors, according to the plaintiffs in the suit.

An assistant to John Catsimatidis, the supermarket mogul who unsuccessfully sought the Republican nomination for New York City mayor in 2013, sent a quasi-anonymous email poll asking voters their thoughts on Mayor Bill de Blasio and his potential rivals, a possible prelude to a second try at Gracie Mansion for the businessman.

As New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo frames himself as a national leader of the left, he is facing growing anger from within his party at home over vetoing legislation to fund public defense.

Nassau County Comptroller George Maragos, who switched from Republican to Democrat to run for county executive this year, has hired longtime Democratic consultant Hank Sheinkopf to lead his campaign.

Cuomo did not make a stop in the Southern Tier to give one of his six State of the State addresses, and mentioned the region by name only once, to discuss hemp, which he says could be a billion dollar industry.

The governor’s budget proposal is due Tuesday and there’s been little hint about details that may be in the plan. But public sector retirees are heartened by a recent bulletin that indicates the state will continue reimbursing retirees for their Medicare premiums at the full rate.

As they try to stop NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio from becoming the first Democrat to be re-elected mayor since Ed Koch in 1985, the GOP may be facing another fierce primary fight.

Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie and Majority Leader Joseph Morelle today announced that for the first time the public has free full access to the most comprehensive legislative research database ever to enable greater transparency and public participation in state government.

Nassau Democratic Chairman Jay Jacobs said last week that his appearance at a Coral House fundraiser for Legislator Laura Curran, a Baldwin Democrat hoping to win the nomination to run for county executive this year, did not mean he was endorsing Curran’s candidacy.

A New Jersey judge reversed a municipal court’s finding of probable cause in an official-misconduct complaint against Gov. Chris Christie that stemmed from the George Washington Bridge lane-closure scandal.

Albany, it’s not all bad, according to the state lawmakers who call it home for part of each week during session.

Hoosick Falls residents and local lawmakers say a proposed settlement between the village and two companies being blamed for polluting the municipal water supply doesn’t go far enough.

The Oneida Nation has purchased more than 100 acres in the Bridgeport area of Madison County, but the Nation isn’t saying yet what it plans for the land. Could a new casino be in the offing?

Here and Now

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is in New York City with no public schedule.

At 9:30 a.m., NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio and his wife, NYC First Lady Chirlane McCray, host an interfaith breakfast and make an announcement, Gotham Hall, 1356 Broadway, Manhattan.

At 10 a.m., the New York City Campaign Finance Board holds a public meeting, Campaign Finance Board’s office, 100 Church St., 12th floor, Manhattan.

At 11 a.m., NYC Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, 32BJ SEIU President Héctor Figueroa, alongside local cooks and cashiers, rally against the nomination of fast-food mogul Andy Puzder as U.S. Secretary of Labor, U.S. Department of Labor building, 201 Varick St., Manhattan.

Also at 11 a.m., the Coalition for the Homeless will release a report on the root cause of the city’s historic homelessness, with Assemblyman Andrew Hevesi and NYC Council members Stephen Levin and Brad Lander in attendance, outside east gate of City Hall, Manhattan.

Also at 11 a.m., 1199SEIU, the Long Island Progressive Coalition and others rally outside of Rep. Lee Zeldin’s office to demand a plan be put in place before any action is taken to repeal the Affordable Care Act, 31 Oak St., Patchogue.

At noon, de Blasio hosts a press conference to make an announcement regarding affordable housing, 184 Metropolitan Ave., Brooklyn.

Also at noon, Sen. Tim Kennedy and Assembly members Sean Ryan and Monica Wallace will announce the implementation of a new law which expands New York’s “Move Over” Law to cover volunteer firefighters and ambulance workers whose vehicles have flashing blue or green lights, Doyle Fire Company #2, 100 Willowlawn Pkwy., Cheektowaga.

At 12:30 p.m., Laura Curran, Democratic candidate for Nassau County executive, unveils an anti-corruption agenda, 1590 Berkeley Ave., Baldwin, Long Island.

At 1:30 p.m., acting Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez and NYC Department of Investigation Commissioner Mark G. Peters announce the results of a long-term investigation, Brooklyn District Attorney’s Office, 350 Jay St., 19th floor, Brooklyn.

At 2 p.m., Assemblyman Francisco Moya, alongside Assembly members Michele Titus, Michael DenDekker, Nick Perry, Victor Pichardo, and Brian Barnwell; Charlene Obernauer, executive director of NYCOSH; and Mario Cilento, president of the New York state AFL-CIO, unveils new worker safety legislation, City Hall steps, Manhattan.

At 4 p.m., NYC Council members Daniel Garodnick, David Greenfield, Mark Levine, and Helen Rosenthal participate in an event on artificial intelligence, WeWork Fulton Center, 200 Broadway, Manhattan.

At 5:30 p.m., Albany Mayor Kathy Sheehan kicks off the 8th Anniversary Albany Chefs’ Food & Wine Festival: Wine & Dine for the Arts, Albany City Hall, Albany.

At 6 p.m., LG Kathy Hochul highlights Cuomo’s human rights agenda at the Schenectady County Human Rights Commission’s 30th Anniversary Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration, Double Tree by Hilton, 100 Nott Terr., Schenectady.

At 6:30 p.m., Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner delivers the annual State of the City address, Marriott Syracuse Downtown, 100 E. Onondaga St., Syracuse.

Also at 6:30 p.m., Assemblywoman Sandy Galef will host a panel discussion regarding the national popular vote and the Electoral College with Assemblyman Jeffrey Dinowitz, the New Yorker’s Hendrik Hertzberg, Iona College’s Dr. Jeanne Zaino and more, Croton Free Library, 171 Cleveland Drive, Croton-On-Hudson.

In the evening, de Blasio will attend the wake of NYPD Detective Steven McDonald. This event is closed press.


In a wide-ranging news conference – his first since the election – a defiant President-elect Donald Trump discussed his relationship with Vladimir Putin, called BuzzFeed “a failing pile of garbage” and gave his plans for building a wall on the Mexican border and replacing the Affordable Care Act. More key moments here.

The NYT fact-checked Trump’s press conference in real time.

The New York Press Club wrote a letter to Trump, strongly disagreeing with his refusal to answer questions from CNN’s Jim Acosta at the news conference, asserting that the network reports “fake news.”

Anderson Cooper last night defended CNN’s reporting of an intelligence briefing the president-elect reportedly received on Russia against a flurry of attacks by Trump adviser Kellyanne Conway, hours after Trump’s accusation that the network aired “fake news.”

Seven months ago, a respected former British spy named Christopher Steele won a contract to build a file on Trump’s ties to Russia. Last week, the explosive details were summarized for Trump in an appendix to a top-secret intelligence report. The consequences have been incalculable and will play out long past Inauguration Day.

A “highly-placed transition source” tells Fox News that Trump never received any summary of unsubstantiated allegations that Russian spies had collected compromising financial and sexual information about him.

Unverified reports that Russian operatives claimed to have compromising information on Trump pitted newsroom vs. newsroom as journalists and media critics quarreled over what’s fair to publish or to withhold from the public.

The White House hit the incoming Trump administration on its lack of transparency, urging it to release more information on supposed unsubstantiated or false claims – just like Obama did (eventually) when Trump questioned his birth certificate.

In unusually public criticism, Office of Government Ethics Director Walter M. Shaub Jr. said Trump’s plan to place his vast business empire in a trust controlled by his two oldest sons and take other steps in an attempt to remove any suggestion of a conflict of interest was inadequate and would leave him vulnerable to “suspicions of corruption.”

U2 has pushed back the release of its “Songs of Experience” album to consider whether they want to write music inspired by the Trump victory.

U.S. Senate Republicans took their first major step toward repealing the Affordable Care Act, approving a budget blueprint that would allow them to gut the health care law without the threat of a Democratic filibuster.

Repealing Obamacare would give 400 of the richest families in America a tax cut worth an average of $7 million each, even as it yanks health insurance away from low- and middle-income Americans, according to a new report from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities.

Health insurance would have to cover birth control without co-pays in New York even if Trump repeals “Obamacare,” under legislation proposed by state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman.

Syracuse-area Rep. John Katko is among a growing number of Republicans in Congress urging GOP leaders to repeal Obamacare only when a replacement is ready.

Backed by President Obama, Eric H. Holder Jr. will lead the National Democratic Redistricting Committee, a group aimed at breaking the Republican Party’s grip on the congressional map.

Led by Democratic New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker, black lawmakers and civil rights advocates urged a Senate committee to reject the nomination of Alabama Sen. Jeff Sessions, a Republican, to be attorney general because of what they called his record of hostility to civil rights.

A day after a NYC Council hearing highlighted the steep costs of police protection around Trump Tower, Trump told NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio that he’d work with the city on its request for federal reimbursement, city officials said.

Billionaire Charles Koch, a prominent backer of conservative political causes, is giving $25.6 million to enable scholars at historically black universities to research education, criminal justice and entrepreneurship in communities plagued by high crime and other social ills.

Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan, a Long Islander who has clashed with Cuomo in recent weeks, is considering a Republican run for governor in 2018, according to three Republicans who spoke to Flanagan about the bid.

After a statewide tour, thousands of miles and many utterances of the state motto — “Excelsior!” — Gov. Andrew Cuomo ended a weeklong rollout of his 2017 agenda Wednesday with his sixth State of the State address, in Albany. Now, many of his proposals will lie in the hands of a restive and potentially uncooperative Legislature.

Cuomo wound up his six-city State of the State tour in Albany, where he proposed a package of sweeping reforms to deal with public corruption and a plan to cap prescription drug prices through the use of a state price control board.

More >

Here and Now

Gov. Andrew Cuomo will be in Onondaga and Albany counties to deliver the final two speeches in his series of six regional State of the State addresses. He will then travel back to New York City.

President-elect Donald Trump is scheduled to deliver his first official press conference since July at 11 a.m. at Trump Tower in Manhattan.

Hearings for four more of Trump’s cabinet nominees are scheduled to take place today – including Secretary of State-in-waiting Rex Tillerson.

NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio is in the city with no public events scheduled.

At 9 a.m., homeless New Yorkers, community groups and advocates from the Campaign 4 NY/NY Housing will demand that Cuomo and legislative leaders release $1.9 billion that was allocated for supportive and affordable housing, Cuomo’s New York City office, 633 Third Ave., Manhattan.

At 10 a.m., Assemblyman Sean Ryan and residents of Buffalo’s Elmwood Village will hold a rally to urge the Buffalo Preservation Board to prevent Ciminelli Development from demolishing structures for a development project at the corner of Elmwood Avenue and Bidwell Parkway, Buffalo.

Also at 10 a.m., the 2017 Human Justice Summit is held, Bronx Christian Fellowship, 1015 E. Gunhill Road, Bronx.

At 10:30 a.m., Columbia University Center on Global Energy Policy Energy Leaders Forum event with guest speaker Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell, Columbia Club, 15 W 43rd St., Manhattan.

Also at 10:30 a.m., mmbers and supporters of the Stop the Cuomo Tax campaign, including Blair Horner of New York Public Interest Research Group; Susan Zimet of Hunger Action Network; Bob Cohen of Citizen Action and others hold a news conference to discuss how local residents are “getting screwed” by Cuomo’s nuclear bailout deal, State Street entrance, state Capitol, Albany.

At 11 a.m., Cuomo delivers his fifth regional State of the State address, John H. Mulroy Civic Center, Carrier Theater, 411 Montgomery St., Syracuse. (LG Kathy Hochul will attend).

Also at 11 a.m., public defender organizations urge NYC Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito to call for vote on Right to Know Act, City Hall steps, Manhattan.

At 11:30 a.m., Assemblyman Anthony Brindisi will unveil a Utica venue that Cuomo can use, should he want to include the Mohawk Valley on his State of the State tour, Conference Rooms A and B, State Office Building, 207 Genesee St., Utica.

At 12:30 p.m., state GOP Chair Ed Cox will continue his streak of providing a response/rebuttal to Cuomo’s State of the State speeches, outside the entrance of the Civic Center, 411 Montgomery St., Syracuse.

At 1:20 p.m., Federal Reserve Bank of New York President William Dudley speaks on “Banking Culture From a Regulatory Perspective” at The Culture Imperative Interbank Symposium, Manhattan.

At 1 p.m., the NYC Council Committee on Finance considers a bill that would reauthorize the city’s tax lien sale program for another four years, Committee Room, City Hall, Manhattan.

At 1:45 p.m., potential 2018 GOP gubernatorial contender Harry Wilson holds a media availability, Sheraton University, (outside Ballroom) 801 University Ave., Syracuse.

Also at 1:45 p.m., NYC Schools Chancellor Carmen Farina hosts middle school students from the Bronx and Brooklyn for a College Awareness Day announcement, Tweed Courthouse, 52 Chambers St., Manhattan.

At 2 p.m., Cuomo delivers his sixth and final State of the State address the the University at Albany, Performing Arts Center – Main Theatre, 1400 Washington Ave., Albany. (Hochul will also attend).

After Cuomo’s speech, Cox will again provide a rebuttal/response, lobby of the UAlbany Performing Arts Center, Albany.

At 3 p.m., Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams honors a trio of crime fighters, including some unconventional community champions, as his latest “Heroes of the Month,” Brooklyn Borough Hall Rotunda, 209 Joralemon St., Brooklyn.

At 6 p.m., NYC Public Advocate Tish James, mentioned as a potential mayoral contender this year, holds a cocktail fundraiser, The Brooklyneer, 220 West Houston St., Manhattan.

Also at 6 p.m., NYC Councilman Jumaane Williams and state Sen. Kevin Parker host a free workshop on how to submit a City Council discretionary application, Brooklyn College, 2705 Campus Road, enter at Campus Road and Amersfort Place, Brooklyn.

At 11:35 p.m., First Lady Michelle Obama makes her final appearance on The Tonight Show – her third appearance on the show in her current role. Other guests include Stevie Wonder, of whom Michelle Obama is a big fan.


In a farewell address to a Chicago hall filled with the activists who helped him become the first black American president, Barack Obama urged all Americans to unite to protect the nation’s democracy, which he said is being threatened by outside forces as well as tensions within.

Going back to his hometown for this historic moment was symbolic to Obama because the city is where he worked as a young community organizer and where eight years ago he declared victory to become the country’s first black president.

The chiefs of America’s intelligence agencies last week presented Obama and President-elect Donald Trump with a summary of unsubstantiated reports that Russia had collected compromising and salacious personal information about Trump, two officials with knowledge of the briefing said.

The dossier, which is a collection of memos written over a period of months, includes specific, unverified, and potentially unverifiable allegations of contact between Trump aides and Russian operatives, and graphic claims of sexual acts documented by the Russians.

BuzzFeed published the dossier in its entirety, even though the site’s editor, Ben Smith, said he had “serious reason to doubt the allegations” in it. A few hours after the documents were published, Trump put out a tweet in all caps that said “FAKE NEWS — A TOTAL POLITICAL WITCH HUNT!”

Sen. Jeff Sessions, Trump’s choice for U.S. attorney general, forcefully rejected accusations that he has racist views, and departed from several of the president-elect’s campaign stances during a Senate confirmation hearing that drew tough questioning from his Democratic colleagues.

The Democrats opposing Sessions are making a “big mistake” and being “intellectually dishonest,” according to former NYC Mayor Rudy Giuliani, who was can associate attorney general for former President Ronald Reagan when Sessions was a federal prosecutor, a relationship that dates back more than 30 years.

A New York judge dismissed a Republican political strategist’s $4 million defamation suit against Trump and his former campaign manager, ruling the president-elect’s “intemperate” tweets saying the woman “begged” for a job were statements of opinion protected by the First Amendment.

As a businessman, Trump has kept the courts busy. That’s hardly likely to change when he enters the Oval Office, creating an unusual and potentially serious problem for a sitting president.

When Trump needs a lawyer to wage his thorniest battles, from defamation claims to fights over deals-gone-south, he has often leaned on New York litigator Marc Kasowitz, who said he expects to continue representing the president-elect when he takes the White House.

One of Trump’s most popular New York City construction projects, Central Park’s Wollman Rink, is the subject of a new lawsuit by a hockey coach who says he was seriously injured on the ice.

U.s. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand’s lonesome opposition to granting defense nominee James Mattis a waiver is running headlong into confirmation reality: The crusty former general may be the best answer to Trump’s inexperience in the national security arena.

Hillary Clinton made a rare and low-key return to Washington yesterday for the ceremonial opening of a new exhibition and museum area at the State Department that will be partly named for her. She appeared alongside fellow former secretaries of state Madeleine Albright and Colin L. Powell.

Chris Cillizza says Clinton should officially quash speculation that she might challenge NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio in a primary next fall.

NYC Councilman Dan Garodnick, whose Manhattan district includes Trump Tower, is urging the president-elect to stay out of New York to cut down on the city’s massive security bill.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo surprised observers by doubling down on the Buffalo Billion, which federal prosecutors say was rigged to benefit former aides, allotting another $500 million to Phase II of the program. Is he changing the subject or simply reverting to business as usual?

Nearing the finish line of his tour, notably absent from the governor’s rhetoric thus far have been ethics and government reform. It’s expected he is saving his reform proposals for the speech in Albany today, where they likely are to resonate the loudest among residents with inside-the-beltway mindsets.

More >


During a marathon confirmation hearing that is still going on, Sen. Jeff Sessions, Donald Trump’s pick to be attorney general, insisted he would be independent minded and able to stand up to the president, promising to aggressively enforce the nation’s laws — even in areas where he has disagreed, like torture, abortion, gay rights, surveillance and hate crimes.

Sessions, an Alabama Republican, also said the law “absolutely” prohibits waterboarding, and he does not support banning Muslims from the U.S.

Due to comments he made during the “highly contentious” presidential campaign, Sessions vowed to recuse himself from any possible Justice Department investigations into Hillary Clinton if he’s confirmed.

American voters approve 55-39 percent of the job President Barack Obama is doing, his best approval rating in seven years, according to a new Q poll. These same voters disapprove 51-37 percent of the way Trump is handling his job as president-elect.

FBI Director James Comey declined to say whether there was contact between the Trump campaign and the Russian government during the presidential race, or whether the FBI was investigating the issue.

Trump reportedly appointed a leading critic of vaccines, Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., to chair a commission on vaccine safety.

Assemblyman Anthony Brindisi will hold a mock “State of the State” address in his home district tomorrow in hopes of luring Gov. Andrew Cuomo, “who has been ducking Utica for months now,” the Democratic lawmaker’s office wrote in a news release.

Brooklyn prosecutors dropped a felony assault charge against Assemblywoman Diane Richardson, who was accused of beating her pre-teen son with a broomstick, though she still faces up to a year on Rikers Island for the remaining misdemeanor charges.

In his Westchester State of the State speech, Cuomo proposed requiring counties to develop a consolidation plan that would be put to a vote this November. The plan would come from the county’s top executive officer.

The Senate Ethics Committee will now consist of nine members — three apiece from the mainline Democrats, the IDC and the GOP.

Former Sen. Alfonse D’Amato was removed from an airplane and tried to persuade fellow passengers to walk off with him after the flight was delayed for several hours.

“Anyone who knows Senator D’Amato knows he speaks his mind – but in this case he spoke after a long and demanding trip to Florida to visit an ailing friend,” a spokesman for the Long Island Republican said. “Jet Blue has apologized to the Senator for overreacting, and the Senator apologized for speaking his mind at a time when he clearly had left his patience at the gate.”

Actor and activist Mark Ruffalo signed off on an email fundraising appeal for NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio, calling the liberal Democrat a bulwark against Trump’s “radical right-wing agenda.”

U.S. Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell joined U.S. Sens. Charles Schumer, Kristen Gillibrand and Rep. John Katko as well as community and park partners today at a signing ceremony formally establishing the Harriet Tubman National Historical Park, in Auburn, New York as the 414th unit of the National Park System.

Planned Parenthood president Cecile Richards said her organization has seen a huge increase in women seeking Planned Parenthood services — particularly when it comes to IUDs.

Bloomfield Industries, one of the five companies licensed to sell medical marijuana in New York, is being acquired by MedMen, a California-based marijuana management and consulting firm. The change in ownership comes just two days after the Empire State’s medical marijuana program marked its first year.

In the weeks after Roger Ailes was ousted as the chairman of Fox News in July, amid a sexual harassment scandal, company executives secretly struck an agreement with a longtime on-air personality, Juliet Huddy, who had come forward with similar accusations about the network’s top host, Bill O’Reilly.

NYPD Det. Steven McDonald, who became an iconic symbol of courage, faith and forgiveness after getting paralyzed 30 years ago on the job, has died at the age of 59.

The Port Authority agreed to a pay a $400,000 penalty to settle a federal probe of the controversial $1.8 billion it spent to repair New Jersey’s Pulaski Skyway and other state roads.

An $850,000 settlement agreement between the village of Hoosick Falls and two companies blamed for polluting the community’s drinking water supplies would cover more than $400,000 in legal and public relations expenses.

The Syracuse teachers union president says she was suspended after she uncovered a fellow officer’s inappropriate use of a computer during an audit.

AQE: NY Violates Children’s Human Rights With School Funding

Hundreds of education advocates will descend on the state Capitol today for the first official Lobby Day of the 2017 session.

They’re calling on the governor and legislative leaders to commit to a two-year full phase-in of the $4.3 billion worth of Foundation Aid that is owed to schools as a result of the 10-year-old Campaign for Fiscal Equity settlement.

To accompany their lobby day, which is expected to draw some 500 parents and students to Albany, the Alliance for Quality Education has released a hard-hitting video that casts the school funding disparity in starkly racial terms.

In the video, an advance copy of which was provided to the SoP, AQE’s advocacy director Zakiyah Ansari says:

“We have asked children to shrink themselves, to be less than they could be, because the state won’t fund their potential.”

“Across the state, the constitutional rights of children have been violated. We have witnessed systemic racism and economic oppression that has rocked our public education system.”

“Governor Cuomo, you and the Senate Majority have chosen to continue the violation of the human rights of our children by not funding our schools.”

In an email accompanying the video, which is being blasted out to AQE supporters this morning, the organization’s legislative director, Jasmine Gripper, says fully funding the CFE settlement is a matter of “racial justice.”

She notes that 58 percent of the money in question is “owed to black and brown students,” adding: “(T)he failure to provide the funding perpetuates systemic racism in education.”

The AQE has launched a letter writing campaign to Cuomo, which warns of an impending effort by the incoming Trump administration to “strip resources from our students.”

That’s something both the NYC teachers union and the AFT have been sounding the alarm on as the president-elect’s Education secretary nominee, Betsy DeVos, faces a confirmation hearing in D.C. tomorrow.

The effort by AQE comes as Cuomo has been trying to position himself as the antidote to Trump and a champion of progressive values in what is widely viewed as preparation for a potential White House run in 2020.

Liberal Democrats and their progressive organizing allies have been pressuring Cuomo on a number of fronts, raising the specter of Trump and calling on the governor to be a “true” leader by embracing their causes. Now we can official add education funding to that list. 

Here and Now

Gov. Andrew Cuomo continues his regional State of the State address tour with stops on Long Island and in Westchester County.

At 9 p.m., President Obama delivers his farewell address to the nation from his hometown of Chicago.

In D.C., confirmation hearings begin for Donald Trump’s cabinet nominees.

At 9:30 a.m., the Rev. Al Sharpton attends the hearing for the U.S. AG nominee, Alabama Sen. Jeff Sessions, and also will meet with the Congressional Black Caucus and civil rights organizations.

Also at 9:30 a.m., the NYC Department of Finance and LinkNYC provide updates during a meeting of the Queens Borough Cabinet, Queens Borough Hall, 120-55 Queens Blvd., Queens.

At 10 a.m., Monroe County Executive Cheryl Dinolfo will be joined by Seneca Park Zoo Officials for an “exciting announcement,” 2222 St. Paul St., Rochester.

At 10:30 a.m., Cuomo delivers his Westchester State of the State address, SUNY Purchase, Performing Arts Center – Recital Hall, 735 Anderson Hill Rd., Purchase.

Also at 10:30 a.m., members and supporters of the “Stop the Cuomo Tax” campaign hold press conference to protest the governor’s upstate nuclear bailout deal, Nassau County Courts, Supreme Court Building, south side, 100 Supreme Court Drive, Mineola.

At 10:30 a.m., NYC Council Transportation Chair Ydanis Rodriguez and Councilman Antonio Reynoso will stand at the corner of Lorimer Street and Grand Street in Brooklyn, the location where an 85-year-old man was killed by a hit and run driver, the latest in a string of deadly hit and run crashes.

At 11 a.m., the state Senate is in session, Senate Chambers, 3rd Floor, state Capitol, Albany.

At 1 p.m., Cuomo delivers his Long Island regional State of the State address, (LG Kathy Hochul will attend), Farmingdale State College, Roosevelt Hall Multipurpose Room, Farmingdale.

Also at 1 p.m., the NYC Council holds a hearing on the economic impact of Trump’s security on local businesses and the city as a whole, Council chambers, City Hall, Manhattan.

Also at 1 p.m., the National Organization for Women holds a protest and press conference to call on the NYPD to take rape cases seriously after NYPD Captain Peter Rose’s controversial remarks on rape, for which he has apologized, 100 Meserole Ave., Brooklyn.

At 6 p.m., hundreds will march to Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer’s Brooklyn home and hold a rally calling on him to resist Trump’s cabinet picks, Grand Army Plaza, Brooklyn.

Also at 6 p.m., City & State hosts the “State of Our State” cocktail reception with state Comptroller Tom DiNapoli keynoting and featuring a panel with state Sens. Diane Savino and Cathy Young, Assemblyman Richard Gottfried and Assemblywoman Crystal Peoples-Stokes, The State Room, 100 State St., Albany.

Also at 6 p.m., NYC Council members Rafael Espinal and Inez Barron, CEC 19, and Community Board 5 co-host a public hearing to receive community input on proposed new 1,000 seat school, P.S. 13 Auditorium, 557 Pennsylvania Ave., Brooklyn.

Also at 6:30 p.m., NYC Schools Chancellor Carmen Farina attends a Town Hall meeting of District 10’s Community Education Council, P.S. 86, 2756 Reservoir Ave., Brooklyn.

Also at 6:30 p.m., the New York state Senate Mental Health Advisory Committee holds a public meeting, SUNY Downstate, 450 Clarkson Ave., Brooklyn.

At 9 p.m., Democratic Leadership for the 21st Century hosts screening of Obama’s farewell address to the nation, Smithfield Hall, 138 W. 25th St., Manhattan.


Jared Kushner will become a senior White House adviser to his father-in-law, Donald Trump, cementing the New York real estate executive’s role as a powerful and at times decisive influence on the president-elect.

Lawyers for Kushner said he would sell many of his assets to avoid myriad potential conflicts of interest. But because he plans to sell to his brother or to a family trust controlled by his mother, some ethics lawyers interviewed questioned how meaningful the divestiture would be.

Kushner will step down as publisher of New York media publication the Observer now that he has accepted a job in Trump’s administration.

Kushner’s wife, Ivanka Trump, who also participated in her father’s campaign decisions, has no immediate plans to enter the administration and will restructure her portfolio of holdings, stepping down from her fashion label.

Trump’s attorney general nominee Jeff Sessions didn’t disclose revenue-making oil interests he holds in Alabama, despite federal ethics rules requiring him to do so, an examination of state records shows.

ExxonMobil did business with Iran, Syria and Sudan while the man chosen to be secretary of state by Trump, Rex Tillerson, was running the company, according to Securities and Exchange Commission filings.

Growing numbers of Republicans are showing discomfort over obliterating Obama’s health care overhaul without having a replacement to show voters. Hoping to capitalize on the jitters, Democrats staged an evening Senate talk-a-thon to condemn the GOP push.

Delivering the first of six State of the State addresses planned around the state this week, Gov. Andrew Cuomo yesterday located the cure to the nation’s political fever in New York, implicitly offering himself as an antidote to a president-elect whose name went unmentioned.

Speaking from inside One World Trade Center, Cuomo acknowledged the “roar” heard from Election Day but urged that “we cannot lose ourselves in an apparent attempt to save ourselves.”

Ken Lovett: “(Cuomo) again tried to claim the progressive mantle he hopes could play well at home while also springboarding him into the national conversation for 2020.”

As Democratic leaders reassess their party’s mission and long-term strategy after Trump’s election, Cuomo seems eager to quickly position himself as a different sort of Northeast liberal, one capable of building things beyond a social agenda — and remaking a persona that has long rubbed some of his colleagues and voters the wrong way.

After Cuomo’s 42-minute speech, the governor and NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio took a brief break from their ongoing hostilities to greet one another warmly in thee VIP section.

In his WNY State of the State address, Cuomo unveiled a $500 million Part II of the Buffalo Billion project – dubbed BB2 – promising hundreds of millions of dollars for projects intended to spur development in downtown Buffalo, on the East Side, in Lackawanna and Niagara Falls.

Unlike Phase I of the economic development program, BB2 isn’t about headline-grabbing mega-projects, like SolarCity’s solar panel factory or a new IBM data analytics center, like the original initiative was.

Here are the 25 initiatives that make up BB2.

Westchester County is bracing for a hit to local employment and revenue after the Indian Point Energy Center shuts down in 2021 after more than 50 years of operation.

More >