A former top aide (Joe Percoco) and several others close to Gov. Andrew Cuomo are being probed for potential improper lobbying and “undisclosed” conflicts of interest having to do with the governor’s signature “Buffalo Billion” economic development program.

In a statement, Cuomo counsel Alphonso David said the governor has appointed Bart Schwartz, former chief of the Criminal Division of the U.S. Attorney’s office for the Southern District, to conduct an “immediate full review” of the Buffalo Billion program, including all grants – part, current or future.

“Ensuring the integrity of the contracting process for this program is paramount, so that the Buffalo Billion and Nano program can continue creating new jobs and revitalizing upstate’s economy,” David said.

In a separate statement, Schwartz said the governor has made it clear he has a “zero tolerance” policy “for any violation of the public trust from any actor or entity,” and he has been told to “follow the facts.”

The attorney for Republican election officials in Nassau County said that Christopher McGrath, the party’s candidate in the special election in the 9th state senate district, had been “mathematically eliminated” in his race against Democrat Todd Kaminsky.

Dean Skelos’ attorneys have asked a federal judge to reject prosecutors’ proposed $500,000 – a sum that U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara’s office has argued would serve as a just counterweight to the fact that the former Senate Republican leader will continue to receive a public pension valued at $955,000.

Though it has been suggested her actions against NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio were politically motivated, state Board of Elections enforcement counsel Risa Sugarman has sounded the alarm over similar behavior in the past – and the targets of her previous efforts were not enemies of the governor.

WNYC’s Brian Lehrer Show — a frequent venue for de Blasio — became hazardous territory this morning, with Lehrer and his callers subjecting the mayor to an onslaught of uncomfortable questions about the whirlwind of investigations enveloping his administration.

Scott Rechler said he has begun talking to Gov. Andrew Cuomo about “transitioning off” the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey board, where he’s served as vice chairman since 2011.

Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner has hired a pricey pair of high-profile Manhattan attorneys to fend off subpoenas from Onondaga County DA William Fitzpatrick. The lawyers are each charging the city $850 an hour – more than three times what Syracuse officials typically pay for outside legal help.

Three teenage interns were among those exposed to a suspicious, white powder Thursday night at the Manhattan headquarters of Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, authorities said.

Hillary Clinton tread carefully on the controversial subject of education reform during a fundraising appearance on behalf of the Eagle Academies network of all-boys public schools in New York City today.

Cuomo wants New York to be the first state in the nation to extend Medicaid coverage to inmates who face serious health challenges immediately before they’re released from prison, which requires federal approval.

The number of $1 million earners in New York dropped for the first time since the recession in 2009, state records show.

Mark Green, NYC’s first public advocate, has written an autobiography, which The Times deems “reflective” and “frank (if sometimes defensive).”

U.S. Sen. Chuck Schumer says Syracuse should be given a chance by the federal government to revive a program that for 20 years removed hazardous lead-based paint from city homes.

Lakewood, Colo., which has already surpassed Syracuse in terms of annual snowfall this year, is about to up the ante.

A new study says no traces of pesticides were found in lobsters collected in Long Island Sound in late 2014, boosting the belief that warming water temperatures is the main culprit in a huge lobster population decline.

Patrons at soup kitchens and food pantries probably don’t realize it, but depending on the day, they may be dining on some of the region’s most expensively produced fare – meat and vegetables from Dan Colen, an artist and Hudson Valley farmer who donates his entire output to several local food banks.

Here and Now

Happy Arbor Day.

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

At 7:45 a.m., the consortium for Computing Sciences in Colleges Northeastern Conference kicks off, Hamilton College, 198 College Hill Rd., Clinton.

At 8 a.m., state Comptroller Tom DiNapoli delivers the keynote speech at the Fulton Montgomery Regional Chamber of Commerce breakfast, Holiday Inn, 308 N. Comrie Ave., Johnstown.

At 8:15 a.m., NY Law School’s CityLaw breakfast series features U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District Robert Capers, 185 West Broadway, Manhattan.

At 8:30 a.m., Democratic presidential frontrunner Hillary Clinton headlines the Eagle Academy Foundation’s annual fundraising breakfast, Gotham Hall, 1356 Broadway, Manhattan.

At 9 a.m., Albany Mayor Kathy Sheehan, City of Albany Forestry Division workers, volunteers from TD Bank as well as young adults from the South End, the Excelsior Conservation Corp, and the College of St. Rose plant 14 trees to replace others lost to the Emerald Ash Borer and old age, Lincoln Park, Albany.

At 9:30 a.m., LG Kathy Hochul convenes the WNY Regional Economic Development Council and makes a funding announcement, SUNY Fredonia, Room G204 ABC, 280 Central Ave., Fredonia.

At 10 a.m., NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio will appear live on WNYC’s Brian Lehrer Show to discuss the 2017 executive budget.

At 11:15 a.m., Success Academy Founder and CEO Eva Moskowitz and parents of Success Academy students hold press conference to announce first court date in a lawsuit seeking to keep the network’s pre-K program running, City Hall steps, Manhattan.

At 11:35 a.m., a pre-taped interview with de Blasio on the executive budget will air on AM 970.

At noon, Hochul joins local elected officials for a groundbreaking at the Rochester Public Market, 280 Union St. North, Rochester.

At 12:45 p.m., DiNapoli visits serval local programs and businesses in Schenectady with Assemblymen Angelo Santabarbara and Phil Steck and Mayor Gary McCarthy and then holds a media availability in front of the Phyllis Bornt Library, 948 State St., Schenectady.

At 1 p.m., NYC Parks Commissioner Mitchell Silver and local officials cut the ribbon on a new $5.8 million horse riding arena at Ocean Breeze, 599 Father Capodanna Blvd., Staten Island.

At 2 p.m., Hochul delivers remarks at the installation ceremony for SUNY Brockport President Heidi Macpherson, SUNY Brockport Special Events Recreation Center, 350 New Campus Dr., Brockport.

At 5 p.m., Clinton attends fundraisers, with a “Conversation with Hillary” event at the Children’s Museum of New York, and an event in Queens with Democratic Reps. Joe Crowley and Grace Meng.

At 7 p.m., 135 moms, grandmothers, foster moms, aunts, and women sleep out on NYC streets to highlight the plight of homeless youth, 460 West 41st St., Manhattan.


Manhattan lawyer Mark Warren Moody has filed a class-action lawsuit against the state and city Board of Elections to overturn the closed-primary system, saying no one should be shut out.

On New York’s presidential primary election day last week, 1,445 people who were denied regular ballots at the polls in Onondaga County refused to take no for an answer – a much higher number than is typical.

NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio was barraged by a fresh round of questions about the investigation into his fund-raising, and reiterated: “(W)e hold ourselves to the highest standard of integrity. Everything we’ve done from the beginning is legal and appropriate.”

De Blasio said he looks forward to the “speedy conclusion” of federal and state probes into his fundraising activities, defending himself one day after his office said it had been subpoenaed.

Historians have been hard-pressed to find a mayor who, along with his administration and inner circle, was ever the subject of as many simultaneous investigations — five, at last count, conducted by as many different agencies — de Blasio now faces.

Contributions to housekeeping accounts for Democrats and Republicans alike have hit record levels in recent years, according to a report from the good government group Common Cause of New York.

Assemblyman Sean Ryan says he’ll decide in two weeks whether to give up his safe seat in the lower house and run for the seat being vacated by Sen. Marc Panepinto among considerable turmoil and a strong GOP candidate (Erie County Clerk Chris Jacobs).

Gov. Andrew Cuomo has created a seven-member committee to search for the next New York State Police superintendent. He expects recommendations within a matter of weeks.

Assembly Minority Leader Brian Kolb is calling on Cuomo to add an Assembly representative to that search committee. Sen. Patrick Gallivan, who chairs the chamber’s Committee on Crime Victims, Crime and Corrections and is a former sheriff, is on the panel.

In the hopes that it’s not over for Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, his local volunteers are watching Erie County election workers this week review the affidavit ballots that were filled out on primary day by voters whose status to vote was unclear.

The Second Circuit has backed Trump in an intellectual property lawsuit filed by a self-described “domainer” who registered domain names with the word “Trump” in them, saying that a district court correctly found the man’s actions violated a federal cybersquatting law.

A suspicious white powder mailed to Trump’s campaign office set off a scare at Trump Tower last night, and was ultimately declared not dangerous.

With the nation on the verge of a presidential election between the first woman to lead a major party and an opponent accused of misogyny, Trump and Hillary Clinton are digging in for a fight in which he is likely to attack her precisely because she is a woman.

In response to the GOP frontrunner’s comment this week that Clinton is the leading Democratic candidate due only to her so-called “woman card,” many took to social media with mock-ups of what those woman cards might look like.

Former House Speaker John Boehner called Texas Sen. Ted Cruz “Lucifer in the flesh” and said he wouldn’t vote for him if the Texas senator wins the Republican presidential nomination. Later commenting on the remark, Rep. Peter King, a Long Island Republican, told Newsday that Cruz “gives Lucifer a bad name.”

More >


Former House Speaker John Boehner described Sen. Ted Cruz as “Lucifer in the flesh” and said that he would not vote for the Texas Republican if he is the party’s presidential nominee. “I have never worked with a more miserable son of a bitch in my life,” Boehner said.

Cruz dismissed Boehner’s criticism of him, casting the remarks as just another example of the GOP establishment targeting him, and saying: “He allowed his inner Trump to come out.”

Speaking at a fundraiser for Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. at the home of a prominent real estate developer, Gov. Andrew Cuomo offered a warm endorsement of the up-and-coming Democrat – a possible challenger to his political rival NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio.

De Blasio said again today that he’s confident he and his top aides have always acted appropriately and legally when it comes to his fundraising, adding: “There’s an investigation going on, we’re going to fully cooperate with that investigation.”

A federal appeals court in Manhattan upheld former Queens Councilman Dan Halloran’s conviction for taking bribes and arranging payoffs to help former state senator Malcolm Smith get on the 2013 Republican mayoral primary ballot.

KeyCorp and First Niagara Financial Group Inc. will sell 18 of First Niagara’s branches in the Buffalo, New York, area to resolve antitrust concerns that arose from KeyCorp’s $4 billion acquisition of First Niagara, the U.S. Department of Justice said.

Sen. Adriano Espaillat – one of several aspiring successors too retiring Rep. Charles Rangel – dismissed U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand’s decision to back Assemblyman Keith Wright for the seat, and insisted his endorsements from local elected officials are more important.

Rep. Charlie Rangel is expected to endorse Wright this weekend to replace him in Congress.

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey are discussing a “potential resolution” of the regulator’s investigation into the agency, bond documents published today show.

For all its ills, New York Penn Station can count one more: toxic contamination on at least two of its tracks.

Pilgrim pipelines opponents say they are buoyed by the state’s rejection of the proposed Constitution Pipeline on the grounds that the developer did not provide sufficient information on the potential impact on water quality.

Rep. John Katko is “disappointed” the DEC rejected the Constitution Pipeline project, calling it a “missed opportunity” to create jobs and lower-cost energy.

Unions whose members would have benefitted from jobs created by the pipeline project are also criticizing Cuomo for nixing it.

A U.S. Senate panel approved bipartisan legislation that would authorize $20 million to reimburse schools that test for lead contamination in drinking water.

The town of North Hempstead is suing Nassau County for the third time over tax revenue withheld to cover tuition reimbursement fees at the Fashion Institute of Technology, for a claim dating back more than a decade.

M&T Bank Corp. has hired former Assembly Majority Leader Paul A. Tokasz as its administrative vice president of government relations.

A half-dozen major Long Island executives who gave money to retiring Rep. Steve Israel’s 2014 re-election campaign are hedging their bets on the winner of the June 28 Democratic primary by donating to two different candidates, campaign filings show.

Democratic Rep. Paul Tonko and Republican Rep. Marsha Blackburn of Tennessee have introduced federal legislation to crack down on the use of so-called ticket bot software used to snatch up large chunks of event tickets online faster than people can.

A complaint that a Buffalo police officer allegedly smashed a man’s head repeatedly against a truck window in a road rage incident is under investigation by Internal Affairs officers.

Winter is officially over! The state Office of General Services announced the start of the summer food vendor and farmers market programs on the Empire State Plaza and Harriman Campus.

Upstate Lawmaker Considers Ride Sharing A ‘Top Priority’

From the Morning Memo:

When lawmakers return next week for a final post-budget legislative push, the issue of bringing ride sharing apps like Uber and Lyft north of New York City will likely come front and center.

“In my opinion, it’s one of our highest priorities before the end of the session. If you think back to last year, it came up late in the session,” said Assemblyman John McDonald, a Democrat from Cohoes.

McDonald believes the present taxi businesses operating in upstate New York can co-exist with ride sharing services, but he says the taxi indsutry needs something of an upgrade.

“I don’t look at ridesharing as the threat to the (taxi) industry that most people think it is. Most of the taxi business here is medical transport. That’s what they do, 80 percent of it,” McDonald said. “We’re working on a parallel path with the taxi industry to Uber-ize them as well, bring them into the 21st century. It’s the technology.

McDonald says he wants a regional solution to the taxi issue, such as having them hailed through an app and licensed under one multi-county authority.

“We need more transportation options in the Capital Region,” McDonald said. “What better way to do that than to approve ridesharing but also bring our taxi industry into the modern day period?”

Whether this brings the taxi industry along in the ridesharing debate remains to be seen. For ridesharing supporters in the Legislature, the move could provide more options to upstate residents.

“We realize from a hospitality perspective, from an economic development perspective, we need to have a good, sound system in place,” McDonald said.

“If we can beef up the taxi industry and if we can bring ridesharing in in a responsible fashion that addresses the inusrance issues, that addresses the vehicle inspections and the access for people with disabilities, I think we’re doing a good thing for he public.”

Gov. Andrew Cuomo has said he’s supportive of a ridesharing measure and potentially have a statewide regulatory system in place.

Here and Now

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

At 8:30 a.m., NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton and U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson will hold a media availability at the Leadership in Counter Terrorism (LinCT) Conference, The Conrad Hotel lobby, 102 North End Ave., Manhattan.

Also at 8:30 a.m., New York City Economic Development Corporation members meet, 110 William St., Manhattan.

At 8:40 a.m., LG Kathy Hochul delivers remarks during Arc of Westchester’s employee recognition breakfast, Westchester Marriott, 670 White Plains Rd., Tarrytown.

At 9 a.m., state Comptroller Tom DiNapoli is the keynote speaker at New York State Internal Control Association (NYSICA) Fraud and Risk Management Conference, Radisson Hotel, 205 Wolf Rd., Albany.

At 10 a.m., Hochul hosts a Mid-Hudson Roundtable on Women’s Leadership with College of New Rochelle President Judith Huntington and Senate Minority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins, College of New Rochelle, Maura Ballroom, 29 Castle Pl., New Rochelle.

At 11 a.m., members of the Port Authority board hold a public meeting, 4 World Trade Center, Manhattan.

At 11:45 a.m., NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio Blasio will greet and thank volunteers at the 14th Annual CUNY/Daily News Citizenship NOW! Call-In event, Stella and Charles Guttman Community College, 50 West 40th St., Manhattan.

At noon, Common Cause/NY will hold a telephone press conference with reporters to release a briefing on contributions to party Housekeeping accounts in New York from 2013-2015.

At 2 p.m., Brooklyn Councilman Mathieu Eugene and advocates from Campaign for Children rally to restore funding for 31,000 summer program slots this year, in response to the failure to include funding for the programs in this year’s executive budget, Brooklyn Borough Hall, 209 Joralemon St., Brooklyn.

At 6 p.m., NYC First Lady Chirlane McCray and Deputy Mayor Richard Buery will host a town hall with members of the Caribbean community to discuss mental health, New Dimension Seventh Day Adventist Church, 1062 Winthrop St., Brooklyn.

Also at 6 p.m., WE ACT for Environmental Justice and the New York League of Conservation Voters Education Fund host a NY-13 candidate forum to discuss environmental justice issues impacting Northern Manhattan residents, Manhattan Pentecostal Church, 535 West 125th St., Manhattan.

At 7:15 p.m., Hochul addresses WNY Area Labor Federation members, Lucarelli’s, 1830 Abbott Rd., Lackawanna.

At 7:30 p.m., NYC Comptroller Scott Stringer delivers the keynote address at the Los Sures annual fundraising reception, 213 North 8th St., Brooklyn.


Some of New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio’s closest political allies have received subpoenas as part of coordinated federal and state investigations into his fundraising activities.

Among those hit with subpoenas from U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara and Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. are Emma Wolfe, the mayor’s director of intergovernmental affairs, Ross Offinger, his top fund-raiser, and BerlinRosen, the consulting firm that works on the mayor’s political campaigns.

Maya Wiley, counsel to the mayor, released a statement saying: “City Hall has been subpoenaed by the New York County District Attorney’s Office and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District and we are fully cooperating with the investigation. The Mayor has not been personally served.”

The Suffolk Democratic Committee returned a $100,000 NYSUT campaign contribution during the 2014 election because the union sought to steer the money to Democratic state Senate candidate Adrienne Esposito in possible violation of state election law.

Bradley Tusk, former campaign manager for NYC Mayor Mike Bloomberg, in the NYDN: “To be clear, it’s still early in this scandal cycle, so we don’t know what will happen. But here’s my sense of the potential outcomes, in order from most to least likely.”

The revelation that it was Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s chosen enforcement counsel at the Board of Elections who sparked an investigation into de Blasio’s fundraising activities has raised a number of questions about motivation and independence.

Republican Donald Trump is mocking rival Ted Cruz’s decision to name Carly Fiorina as his vice presidential pick when the Texas senator’s campaign is stalling, saying: “Cruz can’t win, what’s he doing picking vice presidents?”

Trump, emboldened by fresh primary wins this week and pivoting toward a likely general-election fight, called for the U.S. to pull back from its global engagements, marking a decisive break from recent Republican orthodoxy.

Fading Democratic challenger Bernie Sanders began laying off hundreds of staffers across the country, just one day after the Vermont senator suffered a dismal performance in a pivotal string of Northeast primaries.

In an interview with the New York Times, Sanders acknowledged in the strongest terms yet that Clinton’s delegate lead might have closed off his path to the nomination, and he was less combative toward his party’s front-runner in his moment of apparent defeat, taking a tone of cold realism, if not quite resignation.

State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman says he will introduce legislation as part of his bid to crack down on the use of “bot” software that allows event ticket buyers to gobble up numerous seats for resale faster than individual people can.

Schneiderman filed a lawsuit against Joel Abelove, claiming the Rensselaer County district attorney “flagrantly violated” an executive order last week when Abelove’s office presented evidence in a fatal police shooting to a grand jury.

Former state Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos shouldn’t have to pay a big fine for his corrupt ways because only 12 percent of his career was tainted by allegations of criminality, his lawyers say in new court papers, using an apparently new doctrine.

University of Rochester President Joel Seligman has stepped down as co-chair of the Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council. Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced that Monroe Community College President Anne Kress will replace Seligman, effective immediately.

More >


Texas Sen. Ted Cruz will name Carly Fiorina as his vice presidential running mate, according to two sources – a last-ditch move to regain momentum after being mathematically eliminated from winning the GOP presidential nomination outright.

Fiorina broke into song on the stage after Cruz announced her as his VP pick.

Republican front-runner Donald Trump delivered a foreign policy speech in which he vowed to put American security “above all else” if elected and warned allies they would be left to defend themselves if they don’t “pay their fair share.”

“There were paradoxes throughout Mr. Trump’s speech.”

Dennis Hastert, the Republican who for eight years presided over the House and was second in the line of succession to the presidency, was sentenced to more than a year in prison in the hush-money case that included accusations he sexually abused teenagers while coaching high school wrestling.

Local supporters of Bernie Sanders’ presidential campaign will watch tomorrow when outstanding ballots from last week’s New York state primary election are tabulated, even as Hillary Clinton extends her lead over the Vermont senator in Erie County.

Sanders’ campaign started letting hundreds of field staffers go today, hours after five states in the Northeast voted and the Vermont senator fell further behind Clinton in the race for the Democratic nomination.

State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman filed a lawsuit against the Rensselaer County district attorney, claiming Joel Abelove, “flagrantly violated” an executive order last week when Abelove’s office presented evidence in a fatal police shooting to a grand jury.

Some of New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio’s closest political allies have received subpoenas as part of coordinated federal and state investigations into his fundraising activities.

De Blasio may be bogged down in bad headlines, but that isn’t stopping him from fundraising for his re-election campaign. Comedian Louis C.K. will headline an event for the mayor on May 12th at Brooklyn Bowl.”

A CDTA bus driving team won’t be able to compete in a prestigious international competition because Gov. Andrew Cuomo banned non-essential travel to North Carolina to protest that state’s law on transgender people using public bathrooms.

State GOP Chair Ed Cox on Cuomo’s potential role in the mayor’s fundraising scandal: “He put a mickey in Spitzer; he put a mickey in Paterson, why shouldn’t he do it to de Blasio?”

JCOPE made a referral to state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman’s office for “possible criminal prosecution” related to Upstate Medical University and its former president, Dr. David Smith.

Cuomo announced the opening of the canal system today — the earliest start of the canal navigation season since 1982.

A wildfire at Sam’s Point in the Minnewaska State Park Preserve has now scorched an estimated 2,000 acres. The fire is still smoldering and is considered an active brush fire in danger of reigniting if dry, windy weather continues

Nurse practitioners in New York can now refer Medicaid patients for gender-reassignment surgery, provided they have a background in psychiatric care, thanks to a new rule formally adopted by the state Health Department.

With legislators set to return to the Capitol on Monday, Uber is planning a post-budget push to have car-hailing apps expand into upstate, pledging to do “whatever it takes” to make sure everyone in New York has access to the ride-sharing app.

Environmental groups want Cuomo to veto a plan that would divert water from the Great Lakes to a suburban town in Wisconsin. The town of Waukesha wants to pump 10 million gallons of water each day from Lake Michigan.

Attorneys who have worked with Trump as a client and an adversary said his blunt and blustery persona on the campaign trail matches the businessman they know.

The Buffalo Zoo has a little lion. The as-yet unnamed male cub was born March 5 at the zoo, the only one of four in the litter to survive.

About 100 Bronx gang members responsible for multiple murders, including the slaying of a 92-year-old woman, were busted by the NYPD and federal authorities in the largest takedown in city history.

Chobani founder Hamdi Ulukaya announced that he will give present and future full-time employees shares in the company worth nearly 10 percent of the value of the company’s growth between now and when he sells the company or takes it public.

Here and Now

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

At 10 a.m., Sen. Daniel Squadron, Assemblywoman Deborah Glick, New York Councilwoman Margaret Chin and community members rally to urge the city to continue comprehensive construction coordination, City Hall steps, Manhattan.

Also at 10 a.m., the SUNY Board of Trustees holds a special Executive Committee meeting, The SUNY Global Center, 116 E. 55th St., Seminar Room 202, Manhattan.

At 11 a.m., NYC First Lady Chirlane McCray will deliver remarks at the Denim Day NYC Rally to End Sexual Violence with Councilwoman Laurie Cumbo, Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer and LG Kathy Hochul, City Hall steps, Manhattan.

Also at 11 a.m., PSC CEO Audrey Zibelman, NYSERDA President and CEO John Rhodes, Halfmoon Town Supervisor Kevin Tollisen, EnterSolar Managing Director Peyton Boswell and other officials hold a ceremonial groundbreaking to kick off construction of the Halfmoon Community Solar Project, the first shared renewables solar project in New York, 205 Cary Rd., Mechanicville.

Also at 11 a.m., the National Park Service holds annual observance of the birthday of former President Ulysses S. Grant at the General Grant National Memorial, Manhattan.

At noon, the Assembly will hold a public hearing on worker safety programs in the state to examine best practices for workplace safety and evaluate opportunities for additional worker training, Assembly Hearing Room, Room 1923, 19th Floor, 250 Broadway, Manhattan.

Also at noon, former NYC mayoral candidate Rev. Erick Salgado holds press conference to call for the Taxi and Limousine Commission to end abusive tactics being used against New York City’s taxi drivers, Joe’s Place, 1841 Westchester Ave., the Bronx.

Also at noon, Donald Trump addresses the National Press Club in Washington, D.C.

At 3 p.m., Manhattan DA Cyrus Vance, Jr. attends a ceremony to return 2nd century Buddhist sculpture to Pakistani officials, Manhattan DA’s office, 1 Hogan Place, 8th floor library, Manhattan.

At 5 p.m., Hochul addresses the Staten Island Economic Development Corporation Business Conference, Hilton Garden Inn, 1100 South Ave., Staten Island.

At 5:15 p.m., NYC Mayor Bill de Blasiomwill accept an award from the Ali Forney Center and deliver remarks at its 40 to None Day event, a national day to raise public awareness about LGBT youth homelessness, 321 West 125th St., Manhattan.

At 7 p.m., de Blasio will participate in a tele-town hall with Queens residents to discuss his 2017 executive budget proposal.


A former top aide to Gov. Andrew Cuomo – Joe Percoco – was reportedly included on a July 2014 memo that outlined a coordinated fundraising effort to help Democratic candidates for the state Senate, and on subsequent email updates about that effort.

Jim Dwyer: “(B)bewilderingly, Mayor Bill de Blasio and his crew are said to be in an exotic pile of legal trouble faced by virtually no other politicians who have done just about the same thing.” He also deems the state Board of Elections report on the mayor’s fundraising “remarkably assiduous in places, and filled with flagrant, or at least gaping, holes in others.”

Donald Trump swept all five of last night’s Northeastern state primaries, while Hillary Clinton won four of the five, losing Rhode Island to Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders. Next up: Indiana on May 3.

Clinton now has 2,141 delegates (with pledged and superdelegates combined), which means she is 90 percent of the way to the 2,383 delegates she needs to clinch the Democratic nomination, and it’s virtually impossible for Sanders to surpass her.

Looking past their fading rivals, Clinton and Trump taunted each other in dueling election-night events. Clinton chided the Republican’s penchant for harsh language by saying that “love trumps hate,” while Trump was more bluntly dismissive of Clinton, saying her appeal boiled down to her gender.

During his victory press conference at Trump Tower, Trump said Clinton has “nothing else going” besides the fact that she is a woman, and would only get “5 percent of the vote” if she were a man running for president.

By sweeping five states, Trump pulled only a few hundred Republican delegates short of the 1,237 he needs to win without a contested convention. If he wins both Indiana and California, the GOP frontrunner will be favored to win the nomination at the party’s convention in Cleveland.

Trump has managed to get his once-grounded Cessna jet back in the air, by selling it — to himself.

Ten months after departing JCOPE, Letizia Tagliafierro has a new job working for Gov. Andrew Cuomo: The former executive director of the ethics watchdog panel will serve as the governor’s special counsel for public safety.

The Wall Street Journal: “Behold Mr. Cuomo’s economic growth strategy: Destroy private high-paying energy and manufacturing jobs. Then create government programs that soak state taxpayers to compensate the victims and subsidize his politically favored industries.”

De Blasio unveiled his $82.2 billion executive budget with a presentation focused on savings extracted from city agencies, and a few new programs intended to address problems that arose over the past year, from snarled snowplows in Queens to voting woes in the presidential primary last week.

De Blasio’s budget increases spending on the troubled public-health system and other initiatives while adding to reserves in what he said was an increasingly uncertain economy.

The mayor said that he would earmark additional money for New York City’s third water tunnel to ensure that clean drinking water could be delivered to Brooklyn and Queens within 48 hours of an emergency shutdown of City Water Tunnel No. 2.

Trump’s attorneys urged a New York judge to bring in a jury to decide whether Trump’s business school defrauded customers out of $40 million – a bid state AG Eric Schneiderman opposes.

More >


NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio proposed a $82.2 billion budget today – an increase of $100 million over the preliminary budget he proposed in January.

Donald Trump vowed to step up his presidential campaign in hopes a November victory will drive “Girls” actress Lena Dunham out of America.

Months after Vice President Biden decided against running for president, tensions linger between his camp and Hillary Clinton’s campaign and supporters.

Jane Sanders said that her husband will make his tax returns public when Clinton releases transcripts of her paid speeches for Wall Street.

A New York judge decided that a fraud case against Trump over his former school for real estate investors will go to trial – raising the possibility that the Republican presidential primary front-runner could testify during campaign season.

Conservative media outlets are very interested in Clinton’s coughing fits.

Gov. Chris Christie says New York has agreed to join New Jersey’s prescription monitoring program to share records on the sale of dangerous drugs.

The Thruway Authority is circulating a proposal to borrow $850 million to support the replacement Tappan Zee Bridge, bond documents show, without detailing any plans for toll increases that are all but certain to come after 2020.

Kelly Ripa returned today to “Live with Kelly and Michael,” offering hearty congratulations to her soon-to-be ex-co-host, Michael Strahan, but taking a pointed dig at ABC honchos.

The director of the NYC Civilian Complaint Review Board has dropped her lawsuit alleging that the agency’s former chairman, Richard Emery, called her and a co-worker “p—ies.” Emery resigned the day after the suit was filed.

The DEC is charging the operators of a 538-foot ship from the Marshall Islands, which hauls scrap metal, with dumping oil in the Hudson River at Rensselaer on Earth Day, April 22.

State AG Eric Schneiderman’s office has issued an opinion stating that an online voter registration is legal in New York.

The majority of St. Lawrence County Legislators have no confidence in District Attorney Mary Rain’s ability to perform her duties, and voted 10-3 in favor of calling on the state to initiate an investigation for her potential removal.

A couple who say their wedding was disrupted because the U.S. Postal Service didn’t tell them their wedding invitations needed extra postage lacked legal grounds to sue the agency, a U.S. judge has ruled.

Sean Kirst says the decision to put Harriet Tubman on the $20 “was a victory not only for a movement, but specifically for upstate New York, with its extraordinary heritage as sacred ground for women’s rights.”

Bill Cosby’s attempt to get notes and outtakes from New York Magazine reporters who interviewed women alleging they were sexually assaulted by the comedian was rejected by a Southern District judge.

Cuomo today announced that over $2 million in grants from the EPF will be awarded to municipalities, not-for-profits and higher educational programs for projects that will help protect New York’s waters from the spread of aquatic invasive species.

Syracuse was one of 18 cities across the country to receive a Juvenile Re-entry Assistance Program grant from two federal agencies.

Here and Now

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

Voters in five states – Rhode Island, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Maryland, and Delaware – go to the polls in presidential primaries today.

Donald Trump will hold a press conference at 9 p.m. at Trump Tower in Manhattan. (725 5th Ave.)

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio unveils his fiscal year 2017 executive budget at City Hall in Lower Manhattan this afternoon.

A fuller calendar of the day’s events appears at the end of this post.


Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders aired a stubborn position on the election: If he loses the Democratic nomination, he will help Hillary Clinton in the fight against Republicans. But he is not giving up on central parts of his platform.

Donald Trump and Clinton expect to strengthen their claims on the presidential nominations in Tuesday’s primaries, but a new USA TODAY/Suffolk University Poll underscores the serious challenges they face to heal divisions within their own parties.

Ohio Gov. John Kasich would make a great running mate for Trump, according to former NYC Mayor Rudy Giuliani, who said he was now “100 percent” behind the Manhattan billionaire. Giuliani also likes former secretary of state Condoleezza Rice as a potential VP pick.

Sherrod Brown, the populist Democratic senator from Ohio, said that he has no interest in serving as Clinton’s vice president, distancing himself from the job as reports floated that he could be considered.

Since Trump began his campaign for president, the 68-story tower on Fifth Avenue that bears his name has become a magnet for more than tourists, drawing protesters and the once-scarce city dweller.

“How did a felon from Long Island get on stage among a group of former police officers endorsing Donald Trump before the New York primary?”

Longtime Suffolk County prosecutor John Scott Prudenti regularly collected thousands of dollars from local defense attorneys for the use of his boat, potentially violating county ethics and professional conduct standards.

As the political upheaval from several investigations into possible wrongdoing swirled around him, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio tried to focus on his policy agenda.

In a short news conference, NYC de Blasio said “unequivocally” that no laws were broken by his fundraising operating, that any suggestion that he sought to circumvent state campaign finance laws was “outrageous,” and that the big question was what or who had prompted an inquiry by the Manhattan DA.

“(W)hen you see something done in this kind of fashion, when you see an inappropriate leak, when you see the law being misconstrued in such an obvious fashion, of course it begs the question of motivation,” de Blasio said. “But I’ll leave it to all of you to uncover those motivations.”

The Daily News: “De Blasio’s claim is an insult to New Yorkers’ intelligence. What the mayor and his lawyer leave out is that the mayor and his staff grabbed money from favor-seekers and then took full command of committees that were supposed to make independent decisions as to how the funds were to be spent.”

De Blasio’s top money man, Ross Offinger, funneled $50,000 of “publicly untraceable” campaign cash to help Long Island Democratic Assemblyman Todd Kaminsky win a crucial race for the state Senate. The donation is listed in the state Board of Elections’ database as coming from A&J Contracting, a little-known firm incorporated in Dover, Del.

The criminal probe into de Blasio fund-raising efforts for state Senate Democrats could make an already-unpopular mayor even more toxic in Albany and doom many items critically important to the city.

A top executive at an “incubator” office-space firm bundled the largest contribution to de Blasio’s re-election bid from her bosses and others — while the company was lobbying the city over a Financial District conversion project.

A longtime community affairs detective wrapped up in the sprawling NYPD corruption probe was suspended after he put in his retirement papers yesterday.

Although his office cannot mandate repairs to the voting system, de Blasio announced that the city would spend $20 million to improve the Board of Elections, provided it would agree to a series of changes aimed at addressing the problems with last week’s primary.

Lawmakers and advocates are welcoming plans for $20 million to spur reforms at the city’s Board of Elections, but they also say a broader overhaul on both the city and state level is needed, in the wake of election-day complaints and reports of purged voter rolls.

More >


Well, that didn’t last long.

Fox News anchor Megyn Kelly has landed a big interview with Republican presidential frontrunner Donald Trump after the warring pair agreed to end their feud.

Trump’s campaign has picked up another top adviser as it seeks to professionalize its day-to-day operations, this one coming most recently from Gov. Chris Christie’s presidential campaign.

In her closing ad before tomorrow’s East Coast primaries in five states, former secretary of state Hillary Clinton is looking past the primaries with a message of unity. Her new ad, “Love and Kindness,” presents a positive message of coming together and protecting each other.

NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio said that the leak of a damning memo alleging he and his team violated campaign finance laws was nothing more than a dirty political hit job.

Manhattan DA Cyrus Vance, Jr. confirmed that his office received a letter from the state Board of Elections in mid-January referring possible illegal fundraising activities by de Blasio’s team during the 2014 state Senate races. He would no go into detail.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo sent more personnel to help battle the Ulster County wildfire.

Frankfort Village Mayor Frank Moracco was arrested this week on charges of official misconduct and petit larceny. Both charges are misdemeanors.

Another candidate for the Buffalo School Board – Colleen E. Russell, an ally of Carl Paladino – was knocked off the May 3 ballot today when a judge ruled she had only 498 valid signatures on her petitions to run for the seat, two short of the 500 required.

The White House is launching a $100 million program to spur tuition-free community college programs across the country.

Trump on Ohio Gov. John Kasich’s food tour of the Bronx: “I have never seen a human being eat in such a disgusting fashion.”

Thousands of Staten Island homeowners will get a $183 break on their water and sewer bills this year under a proposal by de Blasio.

A company hoping to link the Constitution pipeline to industrial customers along its route in the eastern Southern Tier is sticking with its plan and optimistic the interstate pipeline will be built.

The Obama administration’s proposal to allocate nearly $2 billion in emergency funding to prevent the spread of the Zika virus in the United States should be approved quickly by federal lawmakers, U.S. Sen. Chuck Schumer said during a visit to Buffalo.

A half dozen major Long Island executives who gave money to retiring Rep. Steve Israel’s 2014 re-election campaign are hedging their bets on the winner of the June 28 Democratic primary by donating to two different candidates, campaign filings show.

The Department of Financial Services has issued guidance to inform health insurers of their responsibility to provide health insurance coverage for maternal depression screenings.

With two weeks to go before a decision is due, New York City officials are still making noise behind the scenes about concerns with Altice NV’s proposed acquisition of Cablevision Systems Corp.

Advocates for eliminating New York’s tax on tampons are confident state lawmakers can strike a deal to make it happen, despite an apparent difference of opinion on bill language.

Onondaga County officials never bothered to notify the Onondaga Nation this month that they were about to break their 2011 promise to give the nation a piece of land on Onondaga Lake, the nation’s attorney said.

A leading lobbyist for the local real estate industry, Desmond Ryan, will retire as executive director of the Association for a Better Long Island at year’s end after 25 years.