Liz Benjamin

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Posts by Liz Benjamin

Slaughter Pressured for Iran Deal Support

From the Morning Memo:

Rep. Louise Slaughter, a Rochester Democrat, is among a handful of House members being targeted by a conservative advocacy group aligned with the Republican Party due to her support for the Obama administration’s nuclear deal with Iran.

The American Action Network has a $250,000 TV and online ad campaign urging Slaughter and four other Democratic lawmakers – Reps. Scott Peters and Pete Aguilar, of California; Debbie Wasserman Schultz (also the DNC chair) of Florida; and Rick Nolan, of Minnesota – urging them to change their minds about backing the agreement.

“This deal with Iran is a historic mistake that could have cataclysmic consequences for America and our allies,” said AAN President Mike Shields in a statement.

“Yet despite all the bipartisan warnings, Louise Slaughter has shown she’s willing to sacrifice sanity and our safety by supporting a deal that paves the way for a nuclear Iran. But it’s not too late: The vote in the House can help change the course. Congress is the last line of defense to stop this deal, and Louise Slaughter owes it to her constituents and country to reconsider supporting this terrible Iran agreement.”

More >

NYSUT Seeks Regents ‘No’ Vote For APPR

From the Morning Memo:

It’s no secret the statewide teachers union is not a fan of the teacher performance evaluation deal struck by the governor and legislative leaders this past session. Now NYSUT is urging the Board of Regents to reject the plan altogether and replace it with one the union has drafted.

“They can do that,” NYSUT President Karen Magee said during a CapTon interview last night. “That’s totally in their purview, to adopt a modification to the regulations.”

The Regents are scheduled to meet next week (Sept. 16-17) to, among other things, vote on the emergency regulations establishing the new evaluation system, which is largely (though not entirely) based on the results of Common Core tests from which a whopping 20 percent of students opted out this year – with NYSUT’s urging and support.

NYSUT has set up an email and fax campaign so its members can bombard the Regents with letters between now and next week, urging them to “do everything in your power to stop the over-testing of students and end the insane practice of evaluating educators based on a single standardized test.” More >

Here and Now

It’s primary day! There are no big races to speak of, but a number of local contests are taking place across the state. Polls open at 6 a.m. and close at 9 p.m. in New York City and the counties of Nassau, Suffolk, Westchester, Rockland, Orange, Putnam and Erie. In all other counties, polls open at noon.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is in New York City.

At 8 a.m., former Gov. George Pataki, a 2016 GOP presidential candidate, appears on CNN’s “New Day” with Chris Cuomo, Alisyn Camerota & Michaela Pereira.

At 8:30 a.m., Pataki will be a guest on “Rose Unplugged,” The Answer AM 1250.

Also at 8:30 a.m., the SUNY Board of Trustees meets, The State University Plaza, 353 Broadway Courtrooms, Albany.

At 9 a.m., NYC Deputy Mayor for Housing and Economic Development Alicia Glen, NYC Economic Development Corporation President Maria Torres-Springer and Theory CEO Andrew Rosen announce a $5 million Made in NY marketing campaign to support the city’s fashion sector, steps of Moynihan Station, 8th Avenue, Manhattan.

Also at 9 a.m., the NYS Bar Association is hosting a continuing legal education (CLE) program for lawyers on how to handle key issues when representing LGBT clients in light of the recent Supreme Court decision, CUNY Graduate Center Recital Hall, 365 Fifth Ave., Manhattan.

At 10 a.m., the NYC Campaign Finance Board holds a public meeting, 100 Church St., Manhattan.

Also at 10 a.m., NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio attends and delivers remarks at the funeral service for Assistant Deputy Warden Belinda Nicks, Pleasant Grove Tabernacle, 1927 Fulton St., Brooklyn.

At 10:30 a.m., LG Kathy Hochul delivers the keynote address at the China General Chamber of Commerce meeting, Fosun International Building, 28 Liberty St., Manhattan.

At 11 a.m., the Senate standing committee on Labor holds hearing to examine the overall process of the Fast Food Wage Board of 2015, Van Buren Hearing Room A, Legislative Office Building, 2nd Floor, Albany.

At 11:30 a.m., Dutchess County Executive Marc Molinaro, Dutchess County Health Commissioner Dr. Kari Reiber, and Sen. Sue Serino kick-off Breast Cancer Awareness month, Poughkeepsie Journal Building Courtyard, 85 Civic Center Plaza, Poughkeepsie.

At noon, Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. and the Supreme Court of Bronx County host a day of remembrance for families, friends & neighbors who died on 9/11, 851 Grand Concourse, the Bronx.

Also at noon, VP Joe Biden, US Attorney General Loretta Lynch, and Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. hold an announcement on sexual assault kit backlog, Charles S. Hirsch Center for Forensic Sciences, 421 East 26th St., Manhattan.

At 12:30 p.m., NYC Comptroller Scott Stringer keynotes an AARP panel on promoting retirement security protection, The Cornell Club-New York, 6 East 44th St., Manhattan.

At 1:15 p.m., Pataki will be a guest on Ken and Mike’s “Reality Check,” WGAN AM 560.

At 1:30 p.m., Cuomo and Biden discuss the economy and make an announcement about New York’s minimum wage, Javits Center North, 39th Street and 11th Avenue, Manhattan. (Hochul will also attend).

At 3 p.m., Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams holds a press conference after an emergency meeting with NYPD officials and parade organizers about the violence that took place last weekend at the West Indian Day Parade, where an aide to Cuomo was shot in the head at pre-parade festivities, Borough Hall, 209 Joralemon St., Brooklyn.

At 4:20 p.m., Pataki will appear on “The Steve Malzberg Show,” Newsmax.

At 4:30 p.m., Hochul and NYS Office of Mental Health Commissioner Ann Sullivan Visit Comunilife’s “Life is Precious” program for at-risk Latina teens, 4419 Third Ave., 3rd Floor, the Bronx. (A media availability will follow).

Also at 4:30 p.m., de Blasio speaks at the premier of “Hedge Funders vs. Kindergarten Teachers: Whose Side Are You On?”, Pace University – Schimmel Theatre, 3 Spruce St., Manhattan.

At 6:15 p.m., Pataki will be a guest on Allan Colmes Radio, Fox News Radio.

At 7 p.m., Hochul joins Queens elected officials and families for a 9/11 commemoration ceremony, McManus Memorial Park, Astoria, Queens.

Also at 7 p.m., de Blasio appears on NY1’s “Inside City Hall.”

At 7 p.m., co-founder Bill McKibben and author Naomi Klein headline the climate change event “Off and On”, event examining the the so-called climate “crisis” before outlining a strategy to solve it, Brooklyn Academy of Music, 30 Lafayette Ave., Brooklyn.

At 12:35 a.m., de Blasio appears on NBC’s “Late Night with Seth Meyers.”


Gov. Andrew Cuomo — joined by Vice President Biden — is expected to push today for a $15-an-hour minimum wage for all workers statewide after the acting state labor commissioner gives final approval to a recommendation raising hourly pay for fast food workers to that amount.

Former tennis-star James Blake was mistaken for a cellphone thief as he stood outside a Midtown hotel, and a group of NYPD cops slammed him to the pavement and handcuffed him until they figured out they had the wrong man.

NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton called James’ account of his treatment “very disturbing,” adding: “He has a right to be upset about it.” An inquiry into the incident is ongoing.

Attorneys for a man who died at Fishkill Correctional Facility filed a lawsuit in federal court claiming that more than a dozen officers were responsible for his death, which a medical examiner ruled a homicide. A former inmate at the prison says he saw the so-called “beat up squad” responsible for the killing.

Nearly eight years ago, a former inmate took state prison officials to court over “degrading” and “subhuman” conditions at the Wende Correctional Facility in Alden. Late last week, an appeals court found credibility to the allegations and revived the suit.

A controversial proposal that calls for the predominantly Hasidic village of Kiryas Joel in New York’s Orange County to annex land from the town of Monroe will likely face legal obstacles.

The New York City Board of Health voted to ease regulations on a controversial circumcision ritual practiced in the ultra-Orthodox Jewish community, fulfilling a priority of Mayor Bill de Blasio.

The board also unanimously approved a measure that will require many chain restaurants to post a warning label on menu items that have a high sodium content.

They may not have roofs, beds or running water — but that didn’t stop a group of angry homeless people from waging a high-tech hashtag war against de Blasio.

A Nevada Senate candidate disinvited NYC Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito from her fundraiser after learning the speaker supported clemency for the jailed leader of a violent Puerto Rican nationalist group.

Cease and desist letters were sent by AG Eric Schneiderman’s office to a number of supplement companies that call for them to stop sales, marketing or distributing allegedly adulterated or misbranded forms of a dietary supplement known as “devil’s claw.”

With Donald Trump rallying at the Capitol against President Obama’s nuclear deal with Iran, Hillary Clinton embraced the agreement a short distance away. But she warned it would work only “as part of a larger strategy toward Iran” that contained Tehran’s power in the region as sanctions are lifted.

Rock ‘N’ Roll Hall of Fame band R.E.M. objected to its 1987 hit “It’s the End of the World As We Know It (and I Feel Fine)” being used at the D.C. rally against the proposed Iran nuclear deal, which was attended by two GOP candidates: Trump and Ted Cruz.

If Clinton’s new apology for her private email server fails to reassure jittery supporters, it could amplify the chatter among some Democrats who have been casting about for a potential white knight to rescue the party from her beleaguered candidacy.

More >


Hillary Clinton said that if elected president, she would vigorously enforce the nuclear pact with Iran while challenging Tehran’s influence in the Middle East and its human rights record at home, and she would not hesitate to use military action if necessary against the regime.

NYC Public Advocate Tish James told City & State the “egos” and “ridiculous” feuding behavior of Gov. Andrew Cuomo and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio are hurting city residents because the two refuse to work together.

Federal agents arrested prominent Long Island restaurateur Harendra Singh at his home at dawn this morning on multiple criminal charges – including bribing a former Town of Oyster Bay employee with a total of $50,000 in cash and a $36,000 luxury-car lease, according to a federal indictment.

The NYC Board of Health voted unanimously to require chain eateries to put salt-shaker symbols on menus to denote dishes with more than the recommended daily limit of 2,300 milligrams of sodium. That’s about a teaspoon.

The board also relaxed the rules surrounding the controversial ultra-Orthodox Jewish practice of metzitzah b’peh – a ritual the Bloomberg administration had required a consent form for because it can transmit the herpes virus to the infant.

About 65,000 4-year-olds were expected to start public prekindergarten in New York City today. That marks a jump from last year but falls short of de Blasio’s previously stated goal of about 70,000 children in the program this fall.

State Education Commissioner MaryEllen Elia kicked off a new school year in Western New York, spending the day visiting schools in Sweet Home and Niagara Falls.

Republican Reps. John Katko and Elise Stefanik are among nearly two dozen House members who agreed to privately share their legislative strategy with a Republican political group supporting their re-election.

L Brands subsidiary Bath & Body Works has agreed to end on-call scheduling practices for all U.S. stores next month, state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman announced.

Stephen Colbert opened big on his first night at the helm of CBS’ “The Late Show.” In Nielsen’s 56 overnight metered markets, which cover about 70 percent of U.S. TV households, the hourlong-plus telecast averaged a 4.9 household rating/13 share.

Adam Roberts, a 23-year-old recent college graduate and fan of former NYC Mayor Mike Bloomberg, is challenging disgraced former Assemblyman Micah Kellner for the unpaid office of Democratic Party district leader in Thursday’s primary.

Don Peebles, the real estate mogul threatening to run against Mayor Bill de Blasio, owns homes in Florida and Washington, D.C. But the Democrat insisted during an “Inside City Hall” interview last night the real place he hangs his hat in is New York City.

A bill proposed by Assemblyman Charles Lavine, a Long Island Democrat, would make apple crumb the official state pie.

New York City has a major man deficit – there are 100,000 fewer college-educated men than there are women.

NetChoice praised Cuomo for “standing up to the taxicab monopoly” (and the NYC mayor) during the battle over Uber.

A proposed new 60-mile transmission line would carry power from wind farms in upstate New York, along with Canadian hydropower, to Vermont.

Nine Long Islanders have won tickets from Sen. Chuck Schumer to be on the west lawn of the Capitol for Pope Francis’s address to Congress on Sept. 24. (He gave out 100 pairs of tickets, all told).

Cuomo’s support of letting Puerto Rico declare bankruptcy could strain his relationship with hedge funders who have a lot of money invested in the island and would like to get it back.

If New York opens the door to legalized online poker, there will be no shortage of gambling interests trying to get a piece of the action.

US Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has new glasses, but is still blind in one eye after injuring himself while exercising at home this past New Year’s Day.

A judge has dismissed counts against two men accused in the criminal case centered on Monroe County’s use of local development corporations.

The proposed Lago casino plans to submit more than 3,000 pages of environmental reports after an appeals court in July tossed the initial environmental review approved by a town board, putting the project on hold.

Sympathy For Clinton From An Old Foe

From the Morning Memo:

In 2006, labor activist Jonathan Tasini had not much good to say about then-US Sen. Hillary Clinton, whom he was challenging from the left in a Democratic primary.

Tasini, who ran largely to protest Clinton’s “yes” vote on the Iraq War, was not terribly successful in his long-shot run. The senator cruised to victory on primary day, receiving some 83 percent of the vote.

Now, Tasini is a big supporter of Clinton’s latest lefty challenger, Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, a self-described socialist who has long caucused with the Democrats. Tasini has written a pro-Sanders book, released just as the senator is surging in early voting states, and will likely make joint appearances with the candidate on the campaign trail.

Despite his loyalty to Sanders, however, Tasini does have some sympathy for Clinton this time around when it comes to the intense scrutiny of all aspects of her life that she routinely faces. More >

Getting an Early Start in NY-21

From the Morning Memo:

Democrats are anxious to try to re-take the North Country House seat they first wrested from GOP hands during a 2009 special election, only to see it return to Republican control in 2014.

That was the year now-Rep. Elise Stefanik defeated Democratic political newcomer Aaron Woolf, becoming the youngest woman ever elected to Congress at the age of 30.

The Democrats were hampered by the fact that their incumbent, Bill Owens, took them by surprise when he abruptly announced in January 2014 he would not be seeking re-election that fall.

Woolf, a documentary filmmaker and (like Stefanik) North Country transplant, was not the party’s first choice, but other, better-known candidates with experience took a pass on running. More >

Here and Now

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

At 7:30 a.m., Assemblyman Michael Blake greets parents and students for first day of school at P.S 463/ PS 168, 1180 Tinton Ave., the Bronx.

At 8 a.m., Fordham Law School honors NYC Councilman Jumaane Williams at a ‘What Color is Your Mortgage?’ discussion, 150 W 62nd St., Manhattan.

At 8:30 a.m., the SUNY Board of Trustees meet, The State University Plaza, 353 Broadway Courtrooms, Albany.

At 9 a.m., Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams hosts the inaugual 9/11 Remembrance Ceremony in the rotunda of Brooklyn Borough Hall, commemorating the 14th anniversary of the September 11th attacks on the World Trade Center, 209 Joralemon St., Brooklyn.

At 9:20 a.m., NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio, NYC First Lady Chirlane McCray and NYC Schools Chancellor Carmen Farina hold a joint press conference, PS 59, 300 Richmond Terrace, Staten Island. The mayor will be kicking off a five-borough back-to-school tour.

At 9:30 a.m., Sen. Tony Avella and Planned Parenthood hold a press conference at opening event at the new Planned Parenthood’s Queens Center, 21-41 45th Rd., Long Island City, Queens.

At 10 a.m., LG Kathy Hochul joins state and local officials at a groundbreaking for the new HQ of High Tech Rochester and the Finger Lakes Business Accelerator Cooperative, The Sibley Building, Roof on 6th Floor, 260 East Main St., Rochester.

Also at 10 a.m., Sen. Bill Perkins, Jonathan C. Moore and the family of Samuel Harrell will speak concerning the submission of a Federal civil rights complaint in the Southern District of New York regarding the tragic death of Samuel Harrell at Fishkill Correctional Facility, Suite 1930, 19th Floor, 250 Broadway, Manhattan.

At 10:30 a.m., An announcement will be made regarding a lawsuit from the protester who was attacked by GOP 2016 candidate Donald Trump’s security last week, Bronx state Supreme Court.

At 11:06 a.m., Hochul calls into The Capitol Pressroom with Susan Arbetter to discuss Cuomo’s “Enough is Enough” campaign.

At 11:30 a.m., Sen. Diane Savino, Assemblywoman Nily Rozic and California State Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez release a letter calling on NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell to address the rampant misclassification of cheerleaders as independent contractors instead of employees on a conference call.

Also at 11:30 a.m., New York State Supreme Court Officers Association President Patrick Cullen, joined by the NYSSCOA Executive Board, announce their endorsement of Joan Illuzzi for Staten Island DA, 80 Broad St., Manhattan.

At 11:45 a.m., Hochul tours Orbaker Fruit Farm, 3451 Lake Rd., Williamson. (Wayne County).

At 1 p.m., Hochul convenes the Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council meeting, Wegman’s Conference Center, 200 Market St., Rochester.

Also at 1 p.m., the Senate Standing Committee on Racing, Gaming and Wagering holds a hearing on the future of online poker in New York, Hearing Room A, 2nd Floor, LOB, Albany.

Also at 1 p.m., Sen. David Carlucci joins the Mental Health Association of Rockland County to announce their “Promising Pathways” intervention and prevention program for at risk student at the MHA Rockland Main Office, 140 Route 303, Valley Cottage.

Also at 1 p.m., Blake visits Morris Academy of Collaborative studies with Farina, 1110 Boston Rd., the Bronx.

At 3:15 p.m., de Blasio holds a press conference at PS 9, 100 West 84th St., Manhattan.

At 4 p.m., Blake meets parents and students after the first day at school at Success Academy 3, 968 Cauldwell Ave., Floor 3, the Bronx.

Also at 4 p.m., NYC Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito and Councilman Rafael Espinal join the Council Jewish Caucus to commemorate the restoration of the recently discovered Torah Scroll hidden for 70 years in Poland, Council Chambers, City Hall, Manhattan.

At 5:30 p.m., US Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand will host the 14th annual “New York Farm Day”, Russell Senate Office Building’s Kennedy Caucus Room, Washington, D.C.


Facing a crowd about 1,000 jammed into a banquet hall, the Monroe Town Board ended the first stage of a 20-month-long controversy by approving a petition to shift 164 acres of the town into the Village of Kiryas Joel, while rejecting a request for the village to annex a larger territory of 507 acres.

The chief executive and two senior officials of United Airlines resigned amid a federal investigation by New Jersey’s US attorney into whether the airline had traded favors with the chairman of the Port Authority.

While capping a quick “solidarity” visit to Puerto Rico, Gov. Andrew Cuomo laid much of the blame for the island’s financial problems on the federal government, saying its treatment of the commonwealth has been “unfair and abusive.”

Cuomo promised to offer advice, technical assistance and summitry to Puerto Rico, largely in the form of expertise and influence.

The governor also announced a joint $5 million tourism campaign to promote travel between the state and the island. “It is hard to overstate the relationship between Puerto Rico and New York,” Cuomo said during one of several public appearances during his brief trip.

Carey W. Gabay, the 43-year-old Cuomo administration aide who was shot in the head before the West Indian-American Day Parade and remains in critical condition, went from picking up litter on Bronx streets as a teenager to being president of the student government at Harvard.

Gabay’s family members are “praying for a miracle,” and have no plans to take him off life support.

NYC elected officials have steered more than $40,000 in taxpayer money to the nonprofit behind the violence-prone, predawn festival in Brooklyn where Gabay was shot.

Cuomo pointedly challenged federal lawmakers to have the “political courage” to pass a national gun control policy to stop violence stemming from the flow of illegal firearms.

NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio discussed his administration’s efforts to address the city’s homelessness problem to national TV, confronting a high-profile critic: Joe Scarborough, the co-host of “Morning Joe,” who had recently warned on the show that the mayor’s policies were causing a “homeless epidemic.”

Pete Hamill accused Scarborough of going “soft” on the mayor.

A top de Blasio aide, Deputy Mayor Alicia Glen, blasted the city’s elites for refusing to acknowledge the good work the administration has done – and accused them of hating the mayor because he’s not in their posh “golf club.”

A settlement struck in a lawsuit targeting the so-called “LLC loophole” in New York election law yielded a $10,000 penalty and could pave the way to future state cases challenging limited liability company donations. But because the deal was reached out of court, it’s unclear if it will hold up to legal scrutiny.

NYC Schools Chancellor Carmen Fariña doubled down on Common Core standards that are under assault elsewhere in the state, saying she doesn’t believing in opting out of tests because it sends a message that students don’t have to be held accountable.

More >


A $12,500 reward was posted today as NYPD officers searched for the gunman who shot Cuomo administration aide Carey Gabay, a 43-year-old Harvard-educated lawyer, in the head. Gabay is fighting for his life, but the prognosis is dire.

Hillary Clinton will appear on “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon” on Wednesday Sept. 16. This will be the first time the former FLOTUS and secretary of state will appear on late-night television since announcing her presidential run in April and her first visit to Fallon’s show.

Clinton will be a guest on Ellen DeGeneres’s show Thursday – two days after Caitlyn Jenner, the former Olympic athlete who is transgender.

NBC’s Andrea Mitchell said that she didn’t get to ask Clinton all of her questions about using a private email account, because she worried the candidate would cut off the interview.

In a plan intended to upend a “political system hijacked by billionaires and special interests,” Clinton presented a set of proposals that would curb anonymous political donations and bolster the influence of small donors through a federal matching program.

New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker, who is under fire from Jewish supporters who had long treated him as one of their own, has convened an unusual emergency meeting to shore up his support in the wake of his decision to support President Obama’s deal with Iran.

Appearing on MSNBC’s Morning Joe with his wife, Chirlane McCray, NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio defended his administration from “perceptions” that New York City is struggling with rising crime and homelessness.

De Blasio filmed a lighthearted back-to-school themed YouTube video.

The office of Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand and New York first responder groups confirmed that Jon Stewart, retired host of “The Daily Show” on Comedy Central, will join about 100 workers and residents ailing from their work at Ground Zero to lobby on Sept. 16 to extend the 9/11 Zadroga Act.

Former President Richard Nixon sent an admiring letter to Donald Trump in 1987.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo committed state workers and resources to help Puerto Rico emerge from fiscal crisis.

Although there are no federal or statewide races on the ballot, there are a number of important local races – including several special elections to fill vacancies and elections for county executive and mayor in some counties and cities.

Cuomo’s office announced a new $500,000 grant program aimed at boosting college enrollment among this school year’s low-income high school seniors.

A judge has tossed a lawsuit filed by environmental groups over the Cuomo administration’s plan to refire an aging coal plant in Western New York.

The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of New York and New York Board of Rabbis are launching the Edward I. Koch Memorial Speakers Series later this month. The first topic of discussion will be the former mayor himself.

With the school year now underway, the New York School Bus Contractors Association is asking for drivers to keep an eye out for students.

The Baltimore mayor’s office has approved a $6.4 million settlement in the civil lawsuit against the city by Freddie Gray’s family.

A community college student from Staten Island was charged with raping a woman at a SUNY Cortland-owned property.

With the publicity surrounding American Pharoah’s run in the Travers Stakes on Aug. 29, betting and attendance at the famed track rose 13 percent from last year to crack 1 million visitors during the 40-day meet.

Here and Now

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is in Puerto Rico on a “solidarity” tour, which started yesterday. He’s scheduled to return to New York tonight.

At 6:45 a.m., a pre-recorded interview with NYC Schools Chancellor Carmen Farina airs on PIX 11.

At 7:20 a.m., NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio and his wife, NYC First Lady Chirlane McCray, appear live on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.”

At 8:20 a.m., Cuomo will be a guest on CNN’s “New Day” (for which his brother, Chris, is an anchor) to discuss his Puerto Rico trip.

At 9 a.m., former NYC Mayor Rudy Giuliani, NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton, FDNY Commissioner Daniel Nigro and others testify at a congressional cheating on “confronting the challenges in a post-9/11 world,” Foundation Hall, National September 11 Memorial & Museum, Manhattan.

At 10 a.m., Cuomo attends a roundtable discussion at the University of Puerto Rico Medical Sciences Campus, Gobernador Piñero, San Juan, Puerto Rico.

Also at 10 a.m., Monroe County Executive Maggie Brooks will be joined by Nathan Rizzo, Vice President of Solar Liberty to announce a new project that will create the largest solar installation in upstate, County Office Building Atrium, 39 W. Main Street, Rochester.

At 10:30 a.m., Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan attends an event at the National Purple Heart Hall of Honor, 374 Temple Hill Rd., New Windsor.

At 10:45 a.m., LG Kathy Hochul, Sen. Tim Kennedy, Assemblyman Sean Ryan announce a successful summer tourism season at Canalside and upcoming fall festivities on the Buffalo waterfront, Canalside (on the boardwalk at the corner near the bike ferry slip), Buffalo.

At 10:50 a.m., Farina appears on WNYC’s The Brian Lehrer Show.

At 11 a.m., Assemblyman and GOP Erie County executive candidate Ray Walter makes an announcement, Edward A. Rath County Office Building, 95 Franklin St., Buffalo.

Also at 11 a.m., Sen. Brad Hoylman and Assemblywoman Deborah Glick attend a press conference at the site of the historic Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire to announce legislation requiring state contractors to disclose data on their gender wage gaps, The Brown Building, 29 Washington Place, Manhattan.

At noon, Sen. David Carlucci will hold a press conference with Historic Hudson River Towns and Sing Sing Prison Superintendent Mike Capra to announce state funding for the Sing Sing Historic Prison Museum, Louis Engle Park (Power House Building), Ossining.

Also at noon, Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner and Superintendent of Schools Sharon Contreras welcome Syracuse City School District students back with a visit to the Dr. Edmund E. Weeks elementary school, 710 Hawley Ave., Syracuse.

At 12:15 p.m., Hochul tours the Buffalo Veterans Affairs Medical Center to highlight the governor’s support of veterans and state initiatives during National Suicide Prevention Week, 3495 Bailey Ave., Buffalo.

At 12:30 p.m., Cuomo tours La Placita de Santurce, Puerto Rico.

At 1 p.m., Queens Borough President Melinda Katz, Assemblyman Phillip Goldfeder, City Councilman Eric Ulrich and Queens Library Interim President and CEO Bridget Quinn-Carey celebrate the grand re-opening of Queens Library at Peninsula, 92-25 Rockaway Beach Blvd., Rockaway Beach, Queens.

At 1:30 p.m., the NYC Jails Action Coalition holds a press conference with City Councilmen Daniel Dromm and Ydanis Rodriguez and advocates to discuss concerns about proposed changes to visiting procedures at Rikers Island, City Hall steps, Manhattan.

At 6 p.m., the Alliance Network holds a candidate forum for the three Democrats vying in the 128th Assembly District primary, Southwest Community Center, 401 South Ave., Syracuse.

Also at 6 p.m., de Blasio delivers remarks at the 2015 West Indian American and Caribbean American Heritage Reception, Brooklyn Academy of Music, 30 Lafayette Ave., Brooklyn.

At approximately 6 p.m. and 11 p.m., de Blasio appears (in a taped interview) on Telemundo.


About an hour into his flight to the commonwealth, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said for the first time that he supported giving Puerto Rico the ability to pursue bankruptcy protection.

“I think Congress should give them the bankruptcy protection so they can make the changes that they need to make,” Cuomo told reporters on the plane. “They need to restructure, literally, to get back on their feet.” Days earlier the governor had declined to take a position on the issue.

Cuomo administration attorney Carey Gabay, 43, who was shot in the head during the pre-West Indian American Day festivities, was not doing well yesterday, according to the governor. He had no brain activity, and doctors were preparing to harvest his organs.

Growing up in a violence-riddled Bronx housing project and losing a big brother to drugs, Gabay vowed that he would make a difference in life — and came to personify what Cuomo called “the American Dream.”

Asked at a news conference whether he would consider banning the parade pre-parties, which have drawn violence in the past, NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton said that the police works every single year to do a better job of keeping people safe.

The governor and the NYC mayor, who have not appeared together since Bill de Blasio blasted Cuomo as a vengeful political manipulator in June, both spoke at a breakfast at Brooklyn’s Lincoln Terrace Park and then marched in the West Indian-American Day Parade along Eastern Parkway, but never crossed paths.

The independent board that investigates misconduct complaints against the NYPD is crediting video recordings for its highest rate ever of substantiated cases.

Syracuse Superintendent Sharon Contreras begins this school year with unprecedented power to fire teachers and administrators at more than half of all schools in Syracuse, thanks to a new state law aimed at jump-starting schools that perform poorly. But she has no plans to slash personnel at the 18 city schools where she has extra authority.

Officials at SUNY Cortland notified students that a rape occurred Sunday at a campus-owned property. A non-student was arrested and charged in connection with the incident by Cortland city police, according to the college.

Former NYC Mayor Rudy Giuliani is “delusional” if he thinks his policies helped the homeless, de Blasio said.

Former NYPD Commissioner Ray Kelly said de Blasio’s constraints on the stop-and-frisk strategy of the Bloomberg administration was to blame for the uptick in murders in New York City. He also attributed the rise in homicides in other cities to a backlash to the killing last year of an unarmed black teenager by a white police officer in Ferguson, Mo.

Elected officials and other self-identified irritants have noted a shift under de Blasio compared to some of his predecessors: He has, at least when it suits him, shown a bit more deference to squeaky wheels, though those close to him are sensitive to any perception that he is too reactive to pressure, from the public or from private interests.

Hillary Clinton is scheduled to announce a campaign finance reform program, which includes a small donor matching system for both presidential and congressional races.

More >

Thanks, But No Thanks

dinapoli1From the Morning Memo:

Gov. Andrew Cuomo departs this afternoon for a whirlwind trip to Puerto Rico during which he will express “solidarity” with the island’s officials as they battle a massive debt crisis.

The trip is just as notable (if not more so) for who’s NOT going than for who is joining the governor for the 24-hour visit.

Cuomo says the purpose of the short journey is to provide assistance in the form of advice on financial matters and health care as leaders on Puerto Rico try to figure out how to address their $72 billion debt. He has refused to take a stance on whether the island, a US commonwealth, should be allowed to declare bankruptcy – an idea of which Congress is not a fan.

Since the whole focus of this visit is financial, you would think the governor would want to include on his delegation the top investors in the state. NYC Comptroller Scott Stringer was invited to attend, but NYS Comptroller Tom DiNapoli – the sole trustee of the state’s massive pension fund – was not. More >