Fighting For Children PAC Backs Con Con

From the Morning Memo:

The political action committee backed by a Greene County businessman pushing for the passage of the Child Victims Act has endorsed the referendum for a constitutional convention.

The Child Victims Act is a measure that would make it easier for the survivors of childhood sexual abuse and assault to file lawsuits. The measure has stalled in the state Legislature.

“A constitutional convention will allow victims of sexual abuse to run as delegates and propose amendments to take New York from last in reforming sexual abuse laws to first,” said the PAC’s founder, Gary Greenberg.

“The NY Legislature has had decades to bring change and help victims of sexual abuse with updated laws. This body of legislators full of corruption and unethical behavior has the worst reputation in the country. The pay to play mentality must end in Albany.”

The convention referendum, being considered next month by voters, is placed on the ballot every 20 years.

Here and Now

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

President Donald Trump receives his daily intelligence briefing, and will speak on the phone with the governor of Iowa.

Trump will then participate in a meeting with the Senate Finance Committee, and have lunch with Vice President Mike Pence.

At 8:45 a.m., Secretary to the Governor Melissa DeRosa speaks at Berkeley College’s “Women in Media: The Courage to Own Your Story” conference, 12 E. 41st St., Manhattan.

At 9 a.m., hundreds of charter school parents from Brooklyn join state Sen. Jesse Hamilton, New York City Councilman Robert Cornegy Jr. and other Brooklyn community leaders at a rally to celebrate the impact of charter schools on Brooklyn’s communities, Cadman Plaza, Brooklyn.

At 9:15 a.m., LG Kathy Hochul discusses women in leadership at the Westchester Women’s Agenda meeting, 78 North Broadway, White Plains.

At 10:30 a.m., Manhattan DA write-in candidate Marc Fliedner will be receiving the personal endorsement of Curtis Sliwa, who is a radio host and founder of Guardian Angels, 1 Hogan Pl., Manhattan.

Also at 10:30 a.m., Republican NYC mayoral candidate Nicole Malliotakis will hold a press conference to discuss issues that affect El Barrio and the community’s support of her campaign, “La Guardia’s Lucky Corner” 116th Street and Lexington Avenue, the Bronx.

At 11 a.m., NYC Public Advocate Letitia James hosts a press conference to discuss how the city’s Education and Homeless Services’ departments have failed to adequately provide support and resources for homeless students, City Hall steps, Manhattan.

Also at 11 a.m., Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino will “break news about…the continuing refusal” of his Democratic opponent, Sen. George Latimer, to pay his household tax debts, 148 Martine Ave., White Plains.

At noon, Community Access and other mental health advocates call on the de Blasio administration to improve relations between the NYPD and the mental health community, City Hall steps, Manhattan.

At 2 p.m., state Comptroller Tom DiNapoli gives remarks at state Sen. Liz Krueger’s Senior Resource Fair, Temple Emanu-El, 1 E. 65th St., Manhattan.

At 2:45 p.m., Rep. Elise Stefanik will visit and tour Prairie’s Orchard in Malone in her continued efforts to get feedback from North Country farmers for the upcoming Farm Bill in Congress, 111 County Route 24.

At 5 p.m., the Bronx Young Democrats host a young professionals night fundraiser with NYC First Lady Chirlane McCray, Gun Hill Brewery, 3227 Laconia Ave., the Bronx.

At 5:30 p.m., the NYC Voter Assistance Advisory Committee holds a public meeting, 100 Church St., Manhattan.

At 6 p.m., NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio and Councilman Steve Levin will host a town hall with residents of Boerum Hill, Brooklyn Heights, the Brooklyn Navy Yard area, Downtown Brooklyn, Dumbo, Fulton Ferry, Greenpoint, Vinegar Hill and Williamsburg, St. Francis College, 180 Remsen St., Brooklyn.

Also at 6 p.m., the Manhattan Chamber of Commerce hosts a “Women of Influence” discussion with Public Advocate James, 125 Park Ave., Manhattan.

At 6:15 p.m., Hochul speaks at the at Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce annual meeting, Gargiulo’s Restaurant, 2911 West 15th St., Brooklyn.


Nikki Haley will seek to focus world attention today on Iran’s actions in the Middle East in an early test of whether Trump’s toughening position on the Islamic Republic is alienating allies and leaving the U.S. isolated internationally.

Former presidential candidate Hillary Clinton said that “cavalier” threats to start war on the Korean peninsula are “dangerous and short-sighted”, urging the United States to get all parties to the negotiating table.

Two leading senators, hoping to stabilize teetering health insurance markets under the Affordable Care Act, reached a bipartisan deal to fund critical subsidies to insurers that Trump moved just days ago to cut off.

Rep. Mark Walker, of North Carolina, a leader of the 170-member Republican Study Committee, blasted the nascent bipartisan deal to fund Obamacare insurer payments as a bailout.

A federal judge in California ordered the Trump administration to turn over emails, letters, memos and other materials related to its decision to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program.

Trump told the widow of a Green Beret who died in Niger that the soldier “knew what he signed up for…but when it happens it hurts anyway” during a five-minute phone call.

An Obama administration reunion tour is unfolding in New Jersey, as a cavalcade of luminaries has paraded into the state in recent days, including former Vice President Joe Biden, former Secretary of Labor Tom Perez, former Secretary of State John Kerry, and tomorrow, the former president himself, urging voters to make Philip Murphy, the Democratic candidate, their governor.

The groundswell over the Harvey Weintein sexual harassment that has rocked Hollywood moved into California’s capital as more than 140 women — including lawmakers, senior aides and lobbyists — came forward to denounce what they describe as pervasive sexual misconduct by powerful men in the nation’s most influential legislature.

Bob Weinstein, younger brother and business partner of Harvey Weinstein, has been accused of sexual assault two weeks after his brother’s allegations surfaced.

Amazon Studios says it has accepted the resignation of its top executive, Roy Price, following sexual harassment allegations made by a producer on the Amazon series “Man in the High Castle.”

The Obama administration knew that Russia had used bribery, kickbacks and extortion to get a stake in the US atomic-energy industry — but cut deals giving Moscow control of a large chunk of the US uranium supply anyway.

Trump hailed the carved symbols of Confederate racism as “beautiful,” and now he’s defending statues dedicated to Christopher Columbus — the man responsible for genocide of North America’s indigenous people.

Former White House spokesman Sean Spicer was grilled for hours Monday by the special counsel investigating possible Russian interference in the election.

As Trump’s first congressional supporter in 2016 and then appearing on countless TV news programs on the president’s behalf, there was no doubt that Collins remains a key member of Congress for the president’s battles that lie ahead. VP Mike Pence’s visit to WNY yesterday underscored that.

NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio’s office said it received no prior warning of Cuomo’s announcement that General Motors and Cruise Automation will begin a self-driving car test in Lower Manhattan next year.

“The city wasn’t give much notice of this idea and we certainly weren’t consulted,” said de Blasio spokesman Eric Phillips, a spokesman. “We have very real safety concerns. We are obviously looking forward to some detail on this idea before any cars hit the streets.”

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A federal judge in Hawaii has blocked President Donald Trump’s revised travel ban one day before it was set to take effect.

Trump’s approval rating for handling the federal government’s response to recent hurricanes has dropped 20 points in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria, according to a new CNN poll conducted by SSRS.

The Miami Heat basketball team, which has held a charity golf tournament at Trump’s Doral golf course for four straight years, will shift that tournament to another course in 2018, a team spokesman said, declining to give a reason for the change.

Former White House communications director Anthony Scaramucci’s new media organization is sparking outrage for a poll question asking readers how many Jews they thought had been murdered during the Holocaust.

Harvey Weinstein was forced out of his namesake company’s board a week after he was fired from the business itself.

Republican Pennsylvania Rep. Tom Marino, who had been nominated to head the DEA, withdrew his name from consideration for the job after a blockbuster Washington Post/60 Minutes report detailed his role in a push to prevent law enforcement from cracking down on drug-company malfeasance in the midst of the country’s worst addiction crisis ever.

A top (Democratic) FCC official is putting pressure on her colleagues to end their silence amid Trump’s threats against TV networks that are critical of his administration.

Hillary Clinton said she does not plan to run for president again, but will continue her criticism of Trump.

George Soros, the hedge fund manager and Democratic donor, has moved the bulk of his wealth to Open Society Foundations, which promotes democracy and human rights around the world.

The Trump administration is planning an increase in federal immigration jails across the country for the thousands of additional undocumented immigrants its agents are arresting.

Democratic U.S. Sens. Tim Kaine, of Virginia, and Michael Bennet, of Colorado, have joined together to propose new legislation that would build on the Affordable Care Act, rather than a repeal and replace effort that has been proposed by the GOP.

Trump, in defense of his claim that President Barack Obama didn’t call the loved ones of fallen soldiers, floated the idea that reporters ask his chief of staff, retired Gen. John Kelly, whether Obama called him after his son died in Afghanistan.

Alicia Preston, a Republican political consultant in New Hampshire who worked on former Gov. George Pataki’s 2016 presidential campaign, takes issue with potential 2020 contender Cuomo’s handling of the ongoing casino revenue disagreement between the Seneca Nation, the state and Niagara Falls.

Attorney General Eric Schneiderman proposed that state law should be changed to require school bus companies to maintain copies of all red-light camera violations, report them to the DMV and school districts; and use any violations in its evaluation of bus drivers.

While in Albany today, Assemblywoman Pamela Hunter discussed three new pieces of legislation she’s pushing that will help make it easier to kill – or cull- deer in urban and suburban areas.

The John R. Oishei Children’s Hospital reflects a new mentality in Buffalo, one focused on the future instead of the past, Cuomo said at a dedication today marking the completion of the new facility.

In 2011, Democratic Syracuse mayoral candidate Juanita Perez Williams’ corporation counsel office hired her ex-husband’s law firm in a deal Syracuse city officials later called secretive and illegal

At Cuomo’s urging, New York is poised to adopt new standards for the treatment of prisoners held in solitary confinement in local jails.

Rep. Chris Collins, who is facing an ethics investigation stemming from his involvement in a struggling Australian biotech firm, spent more money on lawyers in the past three months than he raised for his re-election campaign. He was expecting to raise more than $400,000 with VP Mike Pence’s help today.

About 80 people protested outside the suburban Buffalo restaurant where the Collins fundraiser was held.

Sen. George Latimer, the Democratic Party Nominee for Westchester county executive, was involved in a serious car crash in New Rochelle over the summer in the midst of his primary battle against County Legislator Ken Jenkins.

General Motors plans to become the first company to test self-driving cars in New York City, in some of the world’s worst traffic, as traditional automakers battle technology titans to take the lead in the development of autonomous vehicles.

Though Republican North Country Rep. Elise Stefanik has more cash on hand than all of her NY-21 opponents combined, Don Boyajian, an environmental and town attorney from Saratoga has a sizable early lead on his fellow Democrats.

Onondaga County has the dubious distinction of having some of the state’s highest rates of sexually transmitted disease.

Anti-Scaffold Group: $300M Could Be Saved On Gateway Project

A group that backs changes to the Scaffold Law in New York in a analysis released Tuesday found the law is adding as much as $300 million to the cost of the Gateway tunnel project between New York and New Jersey.

The $13 billion Port Authority project has been a top priority for Gov. Andrew Cuomo.

The group, Common Good, found the insurance costs on the project will add between $180 million and $300 million to the project.

“This is a classic example of an obsolete law that needs to be removed,” said Philip K. Howard, the group’s chairman. “It’s out-of-date, exceptionally expensive, and unique to New York.”

Efforts to make changes to the measure have stalled in the face of opposition from labor groups as well as organizations that represent trial lawyers. A push on the federal level to makes changes to law has been backed by Rep. John Faso.

“Every obsolete law will have special interests dedicated to preserving it, but the public interest should come first” Howard said. “New Yorkers should not be on the hook to pay for these unnecessary costs.”

Here and Now

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is in Erie, Onondaga and Clinton counties.

This morning, President Donald Trump meets in the Oval Office with Secretary of Defense James Mattis.

In the afternoon, Trump will greet Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras of Greece, meet with him, and have a working luncheon with him. After lunch, the two leaders will hold a joint press conference.

Later in the afternoon, Trump will participate in a Diwali ceremonial lighting of the Diya.

In the evening, the president will the depart the White House en route to the Marriott Marquis Washington, D.C. to give remarks to the Heritage Foundation’s President’s Club Meeting.

Vice President Mike Pence travels to Buffalo this morning, where, joined by Rep. Chris Collins, he will participate in a political reception (at noon, at an undisclosed location) and then meet (at 1:30 p.m.) at Performance Advantage Company with local businesses, community leaders, and families to discuss the need for tax reform.

At 9 a.m., the Manhattan Chamber of Commerce’s Government Affairs Council meets with state Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan, 1120 Sixth Ave., Manhattan.

At 9:45 a.m., the NYC Landmarks Preservation Commission holds a hearing, 1 Centre St., Manhattan.

At 10 a.m., the NYC Board of Standards and Appeals holds a public hearing, 22 Reade St., Manhattan.

Also at 10 a.m., Rep. Jose Serrano hosts an “Ask An Astronaut” event with NASA astronaut Lee Morin, Bronx Community College, Schwendler Auditorium, 2155 University Ave., the Bronx.

At 10:30 a.m., Cuomo makes an announcement, John R. Oishei Children’s Hospital, 818 Ellicott St., Buffalo.

Also at 10:30 a.m., Sen. Jim Tedisco and local leaders will announce $1.5 million in new state funding to provide much-needed renovations to significantly enhance public safety at the Glenville Police Department, Town Hall, 18 Glenridge Rd., Glenville.

At 11 a.m., LG Kathy Hochul delivers opening remarks at the Shared Services Initiative presentations, Rockefeller Institute of Government, SUNY, 411 State St., Albany.

Also at 11 a.m., NYC First Lady Chirlane McCray will join the Parks Department, NYC Football Club, U.S. Soccer Foundation, adidas and Etihad Airways for a ribbon-cutting ceremony and inaugural soccer match, marking the first of 50 soccer fields to be opened throughout the city, P.S. 83 Luis Munoz Rivera/P.S. 182, 219 East 109th St., Manhattan.

Also at 11 a.m., Republican NYC mayoral candidate Nicole Malliotakis will be endorsed by the Sergeants Benevolent Association at a news conference, Antun’s, 96-43 Springfield Blvd., Queens.

At 11:40 a.m., the state Board of Regents holds an executive session during its two-day October meeting, 89 Washington Ave., Albany.

At 12:30 p.m., Cuomo makes an announcement, Syracuse Hancock International Airport, Main Terminal, 1000 Colonel Eileen Collins Blvd., Syracuse.

At 1 p.m., Hochul makes a jobs announcement, Unison Industries, 5345 NY-12, Norwich.

Also at 1 p.m., Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. holds a public hearing, 851 Grand Concourse, Room 206, the Bronx.

Also at 1 p.m., Rep. Nita Lowey, along with local officials, visits the Haverstraw Firehouse to discuss her recent visit to Puerto Rico and to provide an update on relief and recovery efforts, 25 Fairmount Ave., Haverstraw.

At 1:30 p.m., the NYC Council holds a stated meeting, City Hall, Council Chambers, Manhattan.

At 2:30 p.m., NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio will make an announcement about protecting tenants and participate in a discussion with a tenant helped by city programs, Legal Services NYC, 1 W. 125th St., 2nd Floor, Manhattan.

At 2:45 p.m., Cuomo makes an announcement, Norsk Titanium USA, 44 Martina Circle, Plattsburgh.

At 3 p.m., Hochul delivers remarks at the groundbreaking of the Roxbury Hotel expansion, 2258 County Road 41, Roxbury.

At 4:30 p.m., Hochul highlights the NYS craft brewing industry during a tour of the Roscoe Brewery, 145 Rockland Rd., Roscoe.

At 6 p.m., the New York Immigration Coalition celebrates its 30th anniversary by honoring former U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara and Unite Here’s General Vice President Maria Elena Durazo, 583 Park Ave., Manhattan.

At 6:30 p.m., Rep. Claudia Tenney hosts a forum on the opioid and heroin crisis, Binghamton University Symposium Hall, 85 Murray Hill Road, Vestal.

Also at 6:30 p.m., Rep. Nydia Velázquez hosts a resource forum to provide an update on the federal disaster response in Puerto Rico, Mexico, the U.S. Virgin Islands and the Dominican Republic, featuring NYC Schools Chancellor Carmen Farina, 309 47th St., Brooklyn.

At 7 p.m., NYC Votes hosts a debate for NYC comptroller candidates Michael Faulkner and incumbent Scott Stringer broadcast on NY1 and WNYC, CUNY TV Studios, 365 Fifth Ave., Manhattan.


President Donald Trump and U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell tried to convey a sense of harmony after months of bitter, private feuding that threatened to undermine their party’s legislative push in the coming weeks to enact a sweeping tax cut.

Hillary Clinton’s defense of NFL players who kneel in protest during the national anthem is indicative of her disconnect with the American people, Trump suggested, adding that her comments have been “very disrespectful to our country.”

Clinton fell and broke her toe during her book tour in London as Trump said he hoped she would run for president again in 2020. She had to cancel several interviews, and appeared on “The Graham Norton Show” with a protective walking boot on her right foot.

Trump falsely suggested he is one of few commanders-in-chief to call the families of fallen U.S. soldiers, and wrongly singled out his predecessor Barack Obama as a leader who never did so.

Trump’s reelection campaign spent more than $1 million in legal fees in the last three months, coinciding with a spike in intensity from Russia investigators.

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor, 63, avoided questions about the president’s belief her health was in decline during an appearance at Queens College, saying she would not discuss “politics.”

The president started yesterday morning with a Twitter attack on U.S. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer over alleged hypocrisy about the 2015 Iran nuclear deal.

On the eve of Vice President Mike Pence’s visit to the Buffalo area, Schumer urged New Yorkers to demand an explanation about Republican proposals to eliminate a major federal tax deduction used by millions of state residents.

Trump said he is not considering firing the Justice Department’s special counsel leading the investigation into Russian interference in last year’s election, though he admits he’d like to see the probe end.

Arizona Sen. John McCain, a former prisoner of war, accepted the prestigious Liberty Medal in Philadelphia with a full-blown attack on what he called “half-baked, spurious nationalism.”

The 2019 green card lottery site has been down due to unspecified technical problems since Wednesday, causing great concern among entrants.

ATF veterans are pushing back against suggestions by Republicans that the embattled firearms regulator is to blame for approving the bump-stock device that Las Vegas shooter Stephen Paddock used to such devastating effect, killing 58 and wounding over 500.

The House passed a bill to ban abortions after 20 weeks of gestation, a top priority of the anti-abortion movement, but the measure is widely expected to die in the U.S. Senate.

In a seven-page executive order, Florida Gov. Rick Scott has declared a state of emergency ahead of white nationalist Richard Spencer’s speech at the University of Florida on Thursday.

Amid the aftershock of the deepening scandal over producer Harvey Weinstein’s alleged decades of sexual assault, New York’s film and television business community is worried that a proposed amendment to the state’s production tax credit would dissuade productions from shooting here.

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President Donald Trump said he can understand why his “friend” and former chief White House strategist Steve Bannon has declared war on the Republican establishment, including U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.

Trump stressed that he has “great relationships with many senators,” but added: “They not getting the job done, and I’m not going to blame myself.”

Trump told reporters he is “looking very, very strongly” at reforming the nation’s welfare system.

The president reportedly loves reminding his underlings who is in charge, and gets a kick out of joking about Vice President Mike Pence’s bigoted, anti-gay ideologies to his face, once saying that Pence “wants to hang” all gay people.

“I’m concerned he’d be a President that the Kochs would own,” Bannon said of Pence.

Following a report that Republican Pennsylvania Rep. Tom Marino, his nominee to head the Office of National Drug Control Policy, had played a leading role in weakening federal agents’ ability to stop suspicious shipments of opioids, Trump said he would “be looking into” the choice.

Hillary Clinton drew parallels between Harvey Weinstein and Trump, calling the disgraced Hollywood mogul’s behavior “disgusting” and “heartbreaking” – just like the presidential candidate once caught on camera bragging about sexually assaulting women.

The Weinstein Co. will receive an immediate cash infusion from Colony Capital, and is in negotiations for the potential sale of all or a significant portion of the company responsible for producing films such as “Django Unchained,” “The Hateful Eight” and “Lion.”

NBC play-by-play man Al Michaels has quickly apologized after making a joke about Weinstein during “Sunday Night Football.”

EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt issued a directive to his agency seeking to end the practice of settling lawsuits with environmental groups behind closed doors, saying the groups have had too much influence on regulation.

The former presidential candidate arrived wearing a surgical boot to the BBC program The Graham Norton Show, as she revealed she took a tumble in high heels while holding a cup of coffee.

In her first interview since her initial comments regarding the Weinstein scandal, fashion designer Donna Karan couldn’t fully explain the “asking for it” comment, saying that she can’t believe those words came out of her mouth.

In the midst of the worst drug epidemic in American history, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration’s ability to keep addictive opioids off U.S. streets was derailed, according to a whistleblower and former DEA official, Joe Rannazzisi.

Trump’s youngest daughter Tiffany celebrated her 24th birthday last Friday evening in New York City surrounded by friends, family and, of course, the paparazzi.

Over the weekend, Trump enjoyed a night out with the first lady and his youngest son, Barron, for dinner at his hotel property in DC. It was the first time all three had been seen together publicly since Barron Trump returned with his parents from an overnight trip to Camp David earlier in August.

Stymied in their effort to get the Legislature and the governor to get on board with full legalization, marijuana advocates are supporting the idea of a constitutional convention.

Brooklyn’s Airbnb black market is booming despite the city’s best efforts to stamp out illegal rentals, according to an investigator hired by a hotel-industry group.

With more than a year to go until the 2018 election, Rep. John Katko holds a large financial advantage over one of his potential Democratic opponents in NY-24.

NY-22 Republican Rep. Claudia Tenney said she expects to be outspent by Assemblyman Anthony Brindisi and his Democratic supporters in the 2018 midterm elections after he raised almost twice the amount from campaign donors in the last quarter.

Harry Wilson, the 2010 Republican state comptroller candidate, is “seriously exploring” a gubernatorial bid in 2018, and plans to make a final decision by late fall.

A drone collided with a commercial aircraft in Canada last week — the first time such a crash has happened in North America, transportation officials said.

More than 32,000 state employees took home more than $100,000 in compensation last year, according to data obtained from the state comptroller’s office.

Long Island’s public schools, after more than $80 million spent on cleanup, repairs and renovations from damage caused by Superstorm Sandy, still lack adequate safeguards against flooding and power losses that caused massive disruptions of classes five years ago, educators said.

The State Board of Regents announced new regulations that will allow teachers from storm-ravaged Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands to get a temporary certification for work in New York.

Martins Backer Calls for BofE Probe of Curran Camapign (Updated)

As Election Day draws closer, the Republicans are continuing to hammer the Democratic Nassau County executive candidate, County Legislator Laura Curran, for her selection of the well-known Manhattan-based consulting firm BerlinRosen, which has been involved in controversies surrounding NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio.

In the latest salvo, a supporter of the GOP candidate, ex-Sen. Jack Martins, has penned a letter to Risa Sugarman, chief enforcement counsel at the state Board of Elections, calling for a probe of the transfer of just over $66,000 in three separate transactions by the Curran campaign to the state Democratic Party, which then turned around and used the money to pay BerlinRosen for direct mailers for Curran.

It’s a standard practice for state parties, which get reduced preferential postage rates from the U.S. Postal Service, to pay for mailers on behalf of candidates and campaigns. Even Martins himself is seeing the state GOP pay for mailers on his behalf, financial filings with the Board of Elections show.

But the complainant in this instance – one Donald Derhem of Floral Park, whom the Martins camp described as a longtime supporter with no formal campaign role – deemed the Curran campaign transfers to the state Democratic Party “illegal pass throughs,” noting candidates are not afforded the same taxpayer-funded benefit.

“By laundering its direct mail expenditures through the New York State Democratic Committee, Laura Curran 2017 illegally accessed a taxpayer subsidy expressly reserved for state party committees, and, as such, both violated the law and improperly converted public money to benefit her campaign,” Derhem wrote.

Derhem demanded that the “brazen scheme” result in the “suspension or revocation” of the state Democratic Party’s subsidized postage rate, and he made sure to cc the postmaster general on his letter to Sugarman.

He also noted – as if she needed any reminder – that BerlinRosen was a “central actor” in Sugarman’s investigation in de Blasio’s “conspiracy to circumvent campaign finance limits” by steering campaign contributions to county party committees to pay various vendors (including the consulting firm in question) that were assisting the Senate Democrats in their failed attempt to re-take the majority in 2014.

A report by Sugarman in 2016 found “willful and flagrant” violations of election law by a group of political operatives known as Team de Blasio in channeling cash through county and state party committees to three ultimately unsuccessful Democratic Senate candidates’ campaigns.

De Blasio’s campaign attorney insisted that the activities outlined by Sugarman were, in fact, “unquestionably authorized by the existing law.”

The report was forwarded to the office of Manhattan DA Cyrus Vance Jr., who eventually declined to bring any charges in connection with the probe.

The DA did, however, chastise de Blasio and his team for their actions that “appear contrary to the intent and spirit of the laws.”

And he also said his decision not to prosecute “does not foreclose the BOE or others from pursuing any civil or regulatory action that they determine might be warranted by these facts; such a remedy might well provide guidance to those involved in the electoral process.”

The Republicans clearly are still holding a grudge against de Blasio and BerlinRosen for their efforts back in 2014. And Martins is also taking a page from the playbook of his former conference by holding out the NYC mayor as some sort of liberal boogeyman intent on extending his political reach outside the confines of the five boroughs.

Also, ethics has been a big focus of this particular race, thanks to the corruption scandal that prevented the current GOP incumbent, Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano, from seeking another term. Curran’s camp has sought at every turn to tie Martins to various ethics scandals, including the one that ousted former Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos from office.

We reached out to the Curran campaign seeking comment on the Derhem letter, but so far have not received a formal response.

UPDATE: Curran campaign spokesman Philip Shulman emailed this response:

“Jack Martins is once again showing his true colors as a hypocritical machine career politician – hurling baseless allegations about something he is doing himself. Martins is running a desperate campaign to try to distract from his history of looking the other way on corruption, having defended his mentor Dean Skelos even after he was arrested on federal charges.”

Martins backer calls for B of E probe of Curran campaign. by liz_benjamin6490 on Scribd

Here and Now

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

President Donald Trump travels to Greer, SC this afternoon, where he will ­give remarks at a “McMaster for Governor” reception before returning to D.C. and the White house.

Prior to his departure, Trump will receive his daily intelligence briefing, and then he and Vice President Mike Pence will hold a cabinet meeting at 11:30 a.m.

Afterwards, Pence and Trump will lunch with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. Later in the day, the VP will participate in the second round of the U.S.-Japan Economic Dialogue with Deputy Prime Minister Tarō Asō.

At 8 a.m., Assemblywomen Nily Rozic and Aravella Simotas speak at the Women Making it Work Breakfast, hosted by The Pregnancy Project, Cornell Club, 6 E. 44th St., Manhattan.

At 9 a.m., the state Board of Regents holds its two-day October meeting, 89 Washington Ave., Albany.

At 9:20 a.m., NYC Councilman Rory Lancman, the Legal Aid Society, other legal services providers and labor unions call for increased city funding to support legal services for low-wage workers, City Hall steps, Manhattan.

At 10 a.m., Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. will host a press conference at Woodlawn Cemetery to encourage cyclists to take part in the 23rd Annual Tour de Bronx, the largest free bicycling event in New York, 3800 Jerome Ave., the Bronx.

Also at 10 a.m., NYC Council members Helen Rosenthal and Ydanis Rodriguez will gather with advocates and others to call for the creation of an independent commission to study cost reform at the MTA, City Hall steps, Manhattan.

Also at 10 a.m., the NYC Department of Citywide Administrative Services holds a public hearing, 125 Worth St., second floor auditorium, Manhattan.

At 10:30 a.m., Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer attends ribbon-cutting for NYPL Schomburg Center renovations, Schomburg Center, 515 Malcolm X Blvd., Manhattan.

At 11 a.m., U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor hosts a Q&A with Queens College students, Queens College’s LeFrak Concert Hall, 65-30 Kissena Blvd., Queens.

Also at 11 a.m., UPROSE, The Climate Justice Alliance, Greenpeace USA and others in the #Our Power Puerto Rico campaign announce a brigade traveling to Puerto Rico to deliver aid, Brooklyn Bridge Park, Pier 6, Brooklyn.

At 11:30 a.m., the NYU Tandon School of Engineering celebrates the launch of the Veterans Future Lab, Veterans Future Lab, 87 35th St., second floor, Brooklyn.

At noon, Assemblyman Dan Quart, state Sen. Diane Savino, NYC Councilwoman Vanessa Gibson and advocates call for Gov. Andrew Cuomo to support reforming New York’s gravity knife laws, 100 Centre St., South Entrance Hall, Manhattan.

At 12:30 p.m., NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio holds a public hearing and bill signing, City Hall, Blue Room, Manhattan.

Also at 12:30 p.m., NYC Schools Chancellor Carmen Farina makes a College Access for All announcement, Pace High School, 100 Hester St., Manhattan.

At 1:15 p.m., de Blasio will hold a public hearing for and sign Intro. 1447-C, which increases safety training requirements for construction workers, City Hall, rotunda, Manhattan.

At 4 p.m., Brewer speaks at Municipal Art Society 2017 Summit panel discussion, Morgan Library & Museum, 225 Madison Ave., Manhattan.

At 4:45 p.m., Brewer speaks at the CUNY Board of Trustees Manhattan public hearing, CUNY Baruch College, 55 Lexington Ave., Room 14-220, Manhattan.

At 5:30 p.m., the Queens Borough Board meets, Queens Borough President Conference Room, 120-55 Queens Blvd., second floor, Queens.

At 6 p.m., Rep. Brian Higgins and the office of U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand host the 2017 Service Academy Night, 5950 Main St., Williamsville.

Also at 6 p.m., Rep. Joe Crowley hosts an event to celebrate Italian Heritage Month with the Bronx and Queens Italian-American communities, featuring keynote speaker Rep. Tom Suozzi, F & J Pine Restaurant, 1913 Bronxdale Ave., the Bronx.

Also at 6 p.m., NYC First Lady Chirlane McCray and the Gracie Mansion Conservancy will launch the second season of the Gracie Book Club with a discussion of Ann Petry’s “The Street,” Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, New York Public Library, 515 Malcolm X Blvd., Manhattan.

At 7 p.m., IDC Leader Jeff Klein, along with Rep. Eliot Engel, NYC Councilman Andrew Cohen and the Fieldston Property Homeowners Association will host an Anti-Hate Forum, Ethical Culture Fieldston School, 3901 Fieldston Rd., the Bronx.

At 7:30 a.m., de Blasio hosts a town hall meeting with residents of the 28th Council District, August Martin High School, 156-10 Baisley Blvd., Queens.


The Clinton Foundation told DailyMail.com it will not return as much as $250,000 in donations from Harvey Weinstein, saying the money had already been spent on the organization’s programs and used for charitable purposes.

The NYT details at great length the NYPD investigation into Weinstein’s 2015 groping in a Manhattan hotel of Ambra Battilana, a 22-year-old model from Italy, which eventually ended with no charges brought against the then-mogul by DA Cy Vance Jr.

The director Woody Allen, whose estranged son, Ronan, played a role in exposing the Weinstein scandal, addressed the wave of allegations against the ex-mogul, calling it “tragic for the poor women” but also warning against a “witch hunt atmosphere.” He later released a statement calling Weinstein “a sad, sick man.”

Weinstein traces the roots of his show business dominance to his arrival at the University of Buffalo campus in the fall of 1969.

By the time Vance Jr. met with the lawyer representing NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio in his year-old campaign finance probe of the mayor, the attorney’s firm and its partners had donated $70,000 to the top prosecutor, which he did not return to avoid a potential conflict of interest.

In a Daily News OpEd, Vance insisted he has “never allowed someone’s wealth, power, race, or campaign contributions to influence my decisions,” and announced the Center for the Advancement of Public Integrity has begun a 90-day independent review of how he handles contributions. In the meantime, he won’t be accepting “a single dollar more.”

Famed former Manhattan sex-crimes prosecutor Linda Fairstein, a best-selling novelist who in 2007 wrote a Vanity Fair column about wanting to make a movie with Weinstein, worked as a consultant for the mogul after he was accused of groping the Italian model.

As Vance’s campaign contributions have come under scrutiny, state Assemblyman Dan Quart said he’s introducing a bill to reign in how much New York prosecutors can accept in donations from defense attorneys.

Weinstein’s former company received more than $400,000 in state tax credits, and state Assemblywoman Linda Rosenthal says it’s time to stop rewarding companies that turn a blind eye to sexual harassment.

The NYPD is investigating ​a woman’s claim, filed just last week, that Weinstein forced her to perform oral sex on ​him inside his Tribeca office more than a decade ago.

The Trump campaign spent more than $1.1 million on legal fees over the last three months — a sharp increase that coincided with the escalation of investigations into Russian interference in the 2016 election.

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson avoided the question of whether he truly called Trump a “moron,” dismissing the brouhaha as the “petty stuff” of Washington. Asked about a leading GOP senator’s comment – “You cannot publicly castrate your own secretary of state” – Tillerson replied: “I checked. I’m fully intact.

With a full-page ad in the Washington Post, “Hustler” publisher Larry Flynt has offered a $10 million bounty for anyone with information on the president that would lead to his “impeachment and removal from office.”

Trump, who has already appointed Neil Gorsuch to replace late Justice Antonin Scalia, reportedly predicted that Justices Sonia Sotomayor and Ruth Bader Ginsburg won’t last long in the Supreme Court.

Summer Zervos, a former contestant on “The Apprentice” who accused Trump of groping her a decade ago, has subpoenaed all documents from his campaign about every woman who has accused him of sexually inappropriate behavior.

Hillary Clinton has compared Russia’s alleged interference in the 2016 presidential election and her subsequent loss to Trump with the devastation of 9/11.

Clinton acknowledged that Russian President Vladimir Putin has notched some victories against the US and issued a warning that he still poses a significant threat, saying: “Keep an eye on him, because he’s not done.”

Former 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick — who last year ignited a national discussion about racial injustice and, eventually, the national anthem — has filed a grievance against the NFL, contending that owners colluded to stop him from playing this season.

Puerto Ricans left powerless by Hurricane Maria should be back on line by mid-December, three months after being plunged into darkness, the island’s governor said.

Pop star Jennifer Lopez emotionally spoke out for hurricane-battered Puerto Rico Saturday at the benefit concert “One Voice: Somos Live!,” trying to assure the citizens of that U.S. territory that despite Washington’s much-criticized disaster response, their island is not forgotten.

More >

The Weekend That Was

The U.S. Justice Department has dispatched an experienced federal hate crimes lawyer to Iowa to help prosecute a man charged with murdering a transgender high school student last year, a highly unusual move that officials said was personally initiated by Attorney General Jeff Sessions.

Despite making quite clear his despise for his predecessor’s top domestic and international legacies in the form of Obamacare and the Iran nuclear deal, President Donald Trump hasn’t quite managed to do away with either of them yet, the New York Times reports.

Trump criticized the New York Times story stating that he has failed to fulfill campaign promises on undoing key Obama administration policies, calling the newspaper “failing” and pointing to early successes like exiting the international Paris climate accord and getting conservative Judge Neil Gorsuch on the U.S. Supreme Court.

Trump’s decision to end a provision of the Affordable Care Act helps fulfill a campaign promise, but it also risks harming some of the very people who helped him win the presidency, as nearly 70 percent of those benefiting from the so-called cost-sharing subsidies live in states he won last November.

Children are being given “short shrift” in the Brexit process, with some left feeling worried and unsafe, Hillary Clinton said while speaking at Swansea University in Wales, which presented her with an honorary doctorate.

Clinton cautioned Britain over its push to secure a trade deal with Trump after it leaves the European Union.

Clinton denied a report that her husband, former President Bill Clinton, told her not to publish her book about last year’s election, calling it “a flat-out lie.”

In an interview with CNN, Clinton again blamed former FBI Director James Comey for her loss in the 2016 presidential election.

Reacting in large part to Russian efforts to hack the presidential election last year, a growing number of states are upgrading electoral databases and voting machines, and even adding cybersecurity experts to their election teams.

Investigators for the special counsel’s office on Friday interviewed Trump’s former chief of staff, Reince Priebus, making him the first senior administration official known to have been interviewed by the special counsel’s office.

Bob Weinstein has no sympathy for his brother Harvey — who he claims has no “remorse” for his actions against his alleged victims.

“Saturday Night Live” finally got around to addressing the Harvey Weinstein scandal a week after it broke and seemed to atone by spending ample time on it.

Lisa Bloom regrets ever signing on to represent Harvey Weinstein as more and more women have come forward accusing him of sexual misconduct, saying it was a “colossal mistake.”

Long before Harvey Weinstein became one of the most powerful people in Hollywood – and now one of the most reviled – a Buffalo woman who worked as a production assistant on his first movie, “The Burning,” in 1980 says she was the target of his unwanted advances.

Anna Wintour, the artistic director of Condé Nast, broke her silence on the Weinstein scandal, saying his behavior is “is appalling and unacceptable,” and adding: “We all have a role to play in creating safe environments where everyone can be free to work without fear.”

France is reportedly considering stripping Weinstein of the state’s highest civilian distinction award, the Legion of Honor.

Weinstein‘s Academy membership has been revoked after the 54-member group held an emergency meeting on Saturday in the wake of countless accusations of sexual misconduct against the movie mogul.

The NYT editorial board weighs in on Manhattan DA Cy Vance Jr., who is under fire for his fundraising practices and failing to prosecute both Weinstein and Ivanka Trump and Donald Trump Jr., saying: “(A)s Mr. Vance belatedly realized, appearances matter, especially for those whose positions give them power to decide other people’s fates.”

Sen. Bob Corker, who publicly engaged in a war of words with the president earlier in the week, again said that Trump is undermining the work of Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, attempting to “publicly castrate” him and endangering the U.S with his tweets and actions.

The nation has seen Corker, a reliable Republican senator from Tennessee, stunningly undermining his president. Chattanooga has seen it coming, for better or worse.

After threats of a lawsuit and accusations of bad faith, the Cuomo administration announced that it would release some $360 million in federal aid it had withheld from New York City’s public hospital system.

Rep. Chris Collins told the House Ethics Committee he once wired $1.3 million to Innate Immunotherapeutics and that he’d be remembered for its supposed miracle cure, but he also asked an NIH staffer to help the company and may have violated insider trading rules.

Collins backers are taking heart in the fact that nowhere in the 29-page Office of Congressional Ethics report is there any claim or any evidence that he wrote legislation on behalf of Innate Immunotherapeutics – the most explosive charge leveled against him by Rep. Louise Slaughter.

Former Trump adviser Steve Bannon rallied his shock troops Saturday at the Values Voter Summit, promising evangelical leaders a 400-electoral-vote re-election win for the president in 2020.

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie projected confidence that federal funding for the full Gateway project will be secured, as he broke ground on a new Portal Bridge over the Hackensack River, part of the larger Gateway Tunnel project.

A climate change denier who believes carbon dioxide is a harmless gas and once said there are “almost no major environmental problems” has been nominated by Trump to serve as a top environmental adviser.

Twenty employees and volunteers from the state Department of Environmental Conservation went to Northern California to assist with wildfire efforts, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced.

The number of educators in New York is down nearly 15,000 positions over the past seven years, while salaries are up 10 percent over that stretch, new state records show.

The state Department of Labor has issued an emergency update to its minimum-wage regulations that reinforces its longstanding guidance to home health care employers to pay workers for just 13 hours of a 24-hour shift.

Some New York City teachers who got in trouble for insubordination or sleeping on the job who are part of the Absent Teacher Reserve could be permanently back in classrooms, as the Education Department places them in jobs this month.

A defense lawyer for the man accused of blowing up a bomb in Chelsea last year all but conceded that her client committed the crime, instead focusing her closing arguments to jurors — and claims of innocence — on a second, unexploded device found four blocks away.

NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio’s re-election campaign begged supporters on Saturday to send him cash, blaming Trump in part for a recent fundraising advantage held by his GOP opponent, Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis — who said the desperate plea is proof the Democratic incumbent is “running scared.”

For the fourth consecutive year, de Blasio plans to hand out money to boost the salaries of school-bus drivers under a program that has already cost taxpayers nearly $100 million.

Five NYC Council members representing majority non-white districts have taken the unusual step of asking a judge to declare the city’s byzantine property tax system illegal, paving the way for reform.

HIV diagnoses in New York City last year fell to an all-time low of 2,279 in 2016, a decrease of more than 200 from 2015, thanks in large part to a new preventive drug, according to city health officials.

A former Rensselaer County assistant district attorney testified Friday before a special grand jury that’s investigating whether District Attorney Joel E. Abelove violated any laws in his controversial handling of an April 2016 fatal police shooting in Troy.

A $10 toll to cross the new Gov. Mario M. Cuomo Bridge would be much too high for Rockland County Executive Ed Day.

A rash of Canada geese deaths in Malone was caused by aspergillosis, a fungal disease that can infect the lungs and air sacs of waterfowl when they eat moldy grain, such as bread or livestock feed, or agricultural waste, local law enforcement officials determined.

The state’s judicial watchdog should investigate controversial Brooklyn Supreme Court Justice Noach Dear, according to Assemblyman Michael Montesano, the ranking Republican member of the Judiciary Committee.

Suffolk County District Attorney Thomas Spota has awarded almost $2.7 million in bonuses to prosecutors since 2012 without approval from county legislators, according to county records provided by County Executive Steve Bellone’s office.

Nassau County and its three towns say new or strengthened ethics laws will curb nepotism, but more than 100 current or former elected officeholders, high-level appointees and political club leaders — Republican and Democrat — have had at least one family member working in local government at some point since 2015.

A native caterpillar is wreaking havoc on sugar maple trees across northern New York, and one local expert said it could have a big impact on maple syrup production next year.

Despite fences erected to keep them away from a black-tie gala, hundreds of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute students on Friday voiced their anger at President Shirley Ann Jackson in a protest over the fate of their student union.

Officials at the Sage Colleges said they have recently concluded a $62.4 million fundraising campaign that surpassed their original $50 million goal and was the most successful fundraising effort in the institution’s history.

Troy police officers and sergeants will get a 2.01 percent raise under a settlement reached between the city and the Police Benevolent Association.

A Nassau bagpipe band has passed on the Jets’ invite to play during halftime over NFL players taking a knee during the national anthem, officials said.

When James J. Allen retired as executive director of the Amherst Industrial Development Agency in April 2016, the IDA kept paying him for another eight months. It wasn’t a payroll mistake.

Buffalo doctors are at the center of a national debate among surgeons: Skullcap or bouffant? It’s a question that has embroiled the medical community in a heated controversy over whether the head attire surgical teams wear could pose a risk of infection.

Officially speaking, Ross M. Cellino Jr. and Stephen E. Barnes are still partners in charge of their Buffalo-based Cellino & Barnes personal injury law firm. But in State Supreme Court, the two men continue to clobber away at each other — in an ugly legal dispute, now in its sixth month.

Ulster County’s Karen Peters marked her impending retirement from the Third Department’s Appellate Division by taking to the bench in her home county for the final time Friday.


President Donald Trump struck a blow against the 2015 Iran nuclear agreement in defiance of other world powers, choosing not to certify that Tehran is complying with the deal and warning he might ultimately terminate it.

Democratic state attorneys general today announced the first lawsuit challenging the Trump administration’s decision to halt subsidy payments that help lower the cost of health insurance for low-income Americans who are covered under Obamacare.

The Cook Political Report has deemed the NY-19 race, in which freshman GOP Rep. John Faso will be seeking re-election next year, a “toss-up.”

The House Democrat who represents the site of the Newtown, Conn. shooting, Elizabeth Esty, has introduced a bill in the wake of the Las Vegas massacre to ban guns with enhanced firing capability.

Ginia Bellafonte laments the lack of “a vibrant, impressive (and young) political class” in NYC.

Disgraced mogul Harvey Weinstein, who is facing possible expulsion from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences tomorrow, could also find his membership in the Producers Guild of America revoked before the day is over.

Director Oliver Stone initially came to Weinstein’s defense, but now he’s backing off — and he’s also facing sexual harassment allegation of his own.

The creators of “In the Heights” – including Lin-Manuel Miranda – are asking The Weinstein Co. to release the rights to a movie adaptation of the musical.

Speaking at a press conference for his film “Mother!,” director Darren Aronofsky addressed the Weinstein scandal saying: “It’s disgusting and it needs to be battled by everyone.”

Hachette Book Group has terminated its Weinstein Books imprint – the latest entity to distance itself from the scandal-scarred former Hollywood bigwig.

The fallout from the Weinstein scandal continued today, as protestors gathered outside Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance’s office to show their outrage over the way prosecutors handled a case involving the alleged sexual assault of a model in 2015.

Ending months of speculation, Maine Sen. Susan Collins announced she will forgo a run for governor to stay in the U.S. Senate, where she has become a crucial swing vote in Republicans’ narrow two-seat majority.

Two of the nation’s best known political strategists, Democrat David Axelrod and Republican Karl Rove, will see if they can find common ground next week in a joint appearance at Hamilton College.

The Citizens Budget Commission released a policy brief saying that tolls on the $4 billion replacement for the Tappan Zee (Mario M. Cuomo) may have to double to pay for it, in a proposed increase from $5 to $10.70.

Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone says “unauthorized bonus payment” to longtime District Attorney Thomas Spota’s prosecutors were given without approval for the past five years, with the three most recent payments resulting in a nearly $900,000 hole in the county’s budget.

Rep. Elise Stefanik, whose northern New York district includes the Adirondack Park, has a nuanced response to the Trump administration canceling the Clean Power Plan, which would have reduced emissions from coal-fired power plants.

State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli thinks Cuomo has “made every indication that he’s running for re-election” next year, and won’t directly say whether he’ll run himself if the governor doesn’t.

Southampton, Long Island has issued notices to the owners of dozens of homes and hotel properties for overcrowding and a host of other code and safety violations, Town Supervisor Jay Schneiderman said.

East Syracuse Minoa High School was locked down today after authorities found a threatening message this afternoon, though police searched the school and located no weapons.