Nick Reisman

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Public Financing Supporters Knock Holiday-Timed Release Of Report

From the Morning Memo:

In the news business, reporters often brace themselves on the day before a holiday or the Friday before a long weekend: What bad news could be announced today, buried under the focus of holiday tidings?

On Tuesday, NY1’s Zack Fink reported the commission determining the specifics of New York’s system of publicly financed campaigns will release its recommendations on the day before Thanksgiving, one of the busiest travel days of the year, maybe coincidentally, a popular day to go to a local bar.

But supporters of changes to New York’s campaign finance laws are laughing at what has been a tried-and-true strategy, if not a little bygone in an era of 24-hour news.

Fair Elections New York, a coalition of good-government and advocacy groups in a statement said there should not be a rush to release the recommendations, which would become law unless lawmakers act by the end of the year.

“While yesterday’s working session showed the Commission is making real progress, they must build in time for the public and campaign finance experts to respond to actual, concrete proposals before they become law to ensure they are workable proposals rather than a backroom ‘big ugly.’ Anything less will raise serious concerns about the Commission’s process and cloud the results of their hard work,” the group said in a statement.

The commission met this week on a state holiday, Columbus Day, to further discuss issues stemming from public financing, including lowering contribution rates. Swirling around the discussion has also been potential alterations to fusion voting, the process of allowing a candidate to run on multiple ballot lines.

Fair Elections New York has pushed for an early release of the recommendations before the deadline for lawmakers.

“We teach students to do first drafts before handing in final reports,” the group said.

“The legislative process has built in committee review for draft legislation. The state Constitution requires that all bills ‘age’ for three days before they can be considered for a vote. News reports suggest the Public Financing Commission is set to release its only report to the public in a Thanksgiving news dump. This adds even more urgency to the need for an interim report that the public and experts can respond to. Will there be an interim draft bill or not?”

Here And Now

Good Wednesday morning, all. Here is the news.

Happening today:

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is in Albany with nothing public planned.

At 10 a.m., Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul will announce the start of construction of the Buffalo Heritage Carousel project. Canalside. Central Wharf, Buffalo.

At 10:30 a.m., Mayor Bill de Blasio will visit a classroom at JHS 259 William McKinley. 7305 Fort Hamilton Parkway. Brooklyn.

At 10:50 a.m., de Blasio will make an announcement, JHS 259 William McKinley. 7305 Fort Hamilton Parkway. Brooklyn.

At 3 p.m., Westchester County Executive George Latimer will sign worker protection legislation. 148 Martine Ave., 8th Floor, White Plains.

At 6 p.m., housing advocates will rally for money to be invested in the homes guarantee proposal for 2020. Washington Irving High School, 40 Irving Place, New York City.

At 9:30 p.m., Hochul will highlight efforts to combat anti-Semitism at the Jewish Community Council’s Sukkot celebration. 1427 President St., Brooklyn.


Gov. Andrew Cuomo in a radio interview on Tuesday with WAMC’s Alan Chartock said the n-word while quoting a New York Times article and talking about anti-Italian discrimination.

Cuomo quoted a New York Times article from over the weekend that had some believing the governor crossed the line. Part of that article was about Italian Americans from Sicily and slurs that were used against them.

The governor’s office largely fell silent for the rest of the day on Tuesday after he used the word in the radio interview.

The New York Post compiled a list of the some of the governor’s most recent verbal flubs.

A judge determined cutest the state’s home care program are in violation of the constitution.

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has endorsed Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders for president.

The state Democratic Committee has adopted gender non-binary language rule changes.

Mayor Bill de Blasio’s son Dante earned $650 a week working for his father’s presidential campaign.

Campaign finance records show contributions to de Blasio’s failed bid for the presidency had dried up long before the campaign ended.

Health groups have filed a brief in support of New York’s flavored tobacco vaping ban amid a court challenging from the vaping industry.

Rep. Paul Tonko is holding a comfortable fundraising lead over his Republican challenger.

Immigration advocates on Long Island faulted President Trump’s administration for pushing through a “public charge” rule change.

Just two days before the City Council is expected to take a final vote to approve Mayor Bill de Blasio’s plan to build smaller jails around the city and close Rikers by 2026, two announcements were made.

The Republican candidate challenging Democrat Melinda Katz for the Queens district attorney post is a registered Democrat.

A woman’s group is calling for the removal of NBC President Andrew Lack from a state tourism board, pointing to his handling of the Matt Lauer sexual assault and rape allegations.

City & State has a profile of Westchester County Executive George Latimer, a Democrat who has sought to out-work everyone around him.

Jon Campbell at the USA Today Network profiles the New York years of Democratic presidential candidate Andrew Yang.

Only a handful of New York City’s selective schools are posting or releasing their admissions criteria.

New Jersey’s minimum wage next year is set to increase by $1.

New Yorkers are divided along party lines when it comes to impeaching and removing President Donald Trump from office, a Siena College poll released Tuesday found.

The poll also found a majority of New Yorkers would support college athletes receive some sort of payment for the use of their likenesses or endorsements.

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation has officially filed suit against the International Joint Commission.

General Motors CEO Mary Barra joined negotiators at the bargaining table, an indication that a deal may be near to end a month-long strike by members of the United Auto Workers union that has paralyzed the company’s factories.

An off-duty NYPD sergeant died Tuesday from a self-inflicted gunshot to the head, the police department confirmed, the tenth currently-employed member of the department to take their own life this year.

It’s been 95 years since passenger trains rumbled down the tracks of the Bay Ridge Branch. Now, it’s a freight line.

Newburgh police and firefighters listened to a budget presentation proposing several layoffs in both their departments and other departments Tuesday evening.

In Albany Tuesday night, community members appeared — once again — to talk about ways to keep their neighborhoods safer.

Rensselaer will be the lead agency in the environmental review of the proposed Capital Gondola project, coordinating with Albany.

Through a lawsuit filed Tuesday morning in federal court, the New York state Nurses Association is claiming Albany Medical Center’s Filipino recruitment program violates human trafficking laws.

About 350 seniors in Buffalo will be receiving some property tax exemptions as officials consider expanding the criteria to include more people.

Erie County Legislative Chair April Baskin called for more information Tuesday in the recent death of Erie County Holding Center inmate, Robert Ingalsbe.

Synacor is cutting 14 jobs in western New York after losing a contract to manage AT&T’s web portal.

A measure meant to create an assessment “bill of rights” which would have included 24-hour-a-day operators answering assessment questions died in the Nassau County Legislature.

The candidates for Nassau County district attorney squared off in a debate.

In national news:

Elizabeth Warren’s rivals repeatedly jabbed at her during Tuesday night’s Democratic presidential debate, accusing the Massachusetts senator of ducking questions about the costs of Medicare for All universal health insurance and her signature “wealth tax” plan.

The attacks on Warren, who is emerging as the race’s frontrunner, should not come as a surprise.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has, for now, held off on a vote to formally launch an impeachment inquiry of President Trump.

Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance is turning to “confidential informants” in his investigation of President Trump’s finances.

The men indicted last week on campaign finance charges were spotted dining with former Mayor Rudy Giuliani at a Miami night spot.

New York prosecutors have subpoenaed a former House lawmaker from Texas in the criminal investigation of Giuliani’s overseas work.

From the editorial pages:

The Daily News says the New York City Council must support the plan to close Rikers Island jail.

The Buffalo News cheered the installation of stop-arm cameras on school buses, but added the fines for passing a stopped bus are too low.

The Times Union says a project to construct a gondola between Rensselaer and Albany should be proven to be viable for taxpayer money is committed to it.

From the sports pages:

The Washington Nationals, once the lowly Montreal Expos, have won the National League pennant.

The Yankees dropped the first game of the ALCS at Yankee Stadium to the Astros.

NY-15: Torres Endorsed By The Arena PAC

Democratic congressional candidate Ritchie Torres was endorsed Tuesday by The Arena PAC in the crowded primary for the 15th district House seat.

“Arena — through its Five Borough Future initiative — is proud to support Councilman Ritchie Torres for the 15th Congressional seat,” said Ravi Gupta, the former Obama administration who co-founded the group.

“We need more innovative and energetic voices in Congress. Most importantly, we need stronger voices for federal investment in public housing. Ritchie can be such a voice. And if progressives don’t begin to come together and invest in the 15th, we will likely find ourselves with a member of the NYC congressional delegation who is wildly out of step with the city and the district. That’s why we will do everything we can to help Councilman Torres to win, and we call on our friends to do the same.”

Previously supported candidates have included Democrats Alessandra Biaggi, Zellnor Myrie, Lauren Underwood and Stacey Abrams.

The PAC was also one of the main funders and strategists for the No IDC movement, which opposed the re-election of lawmakers aligned with the now defunct Independent Democratic Conference.

“The Arena’s proven track record of helping to elect young, energetic progressive candidates will inject a new force into the NY-15 race, and I’m proud to receive their endorsement,” Torres said. “We are running a modern, sophisticated campaign to prevent a Trump Republican masquerading as a Democrat from winning this seat, and with the Arena’s support we will prevail in June 2020.”

Heastie Doesn’t Take Offense At Cuomo Quoting N-Word, Williams Calls It White Privilege

Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie in a statement on Tuesday said he did not take offense with Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s quoting of the n-word in a radio interview earlier in the morning.

Cuomo quoted The New York Times in the interview while discussing discrimination, quoting a slur used against Italians that included the n-word.

“The Governor was quoting a New York Times story and was using it for context,” Heastie said in a statement. “I didn’t take any offense at his comments.”

Heastie is the first black lawmaker to hold the speakership in the Assembly.

New York City Public Advocate Jumaane Williams, who ran for lieutenant governor on an unofficial progressive ticket countering Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul last year, took a dimmer view.

Williams tweeted a link to a story about Cuomo’s remarks and added: “This headline brought to you by the 1940s and empowered white privilege.”

James Defends Asylum Access In Court Brief

Attorney General Letitia James in a court brief with fellow attorneys general on Tuesday pushed back against a rule change that would limit immigrants receiving access to the legal asylum process.

The rule would, with some exceptions, hinder the ability of immigrants entering the country at the southern border from applying for asylum protection in the United States.

“America has always stood as a beacon of hope for those seeking refuge from war and terror at home, and, under our watch, we will fight to ensure that we stay true to who we are as a nation,” James said.

“While children and families flee persecution, the Trump Administration continues to use them as pawns in their game of political chess. The message embodied by the Statue of Liberty is clear: ‘from her beacon-hand glows world-wide welcome.’ This country is open to all, not just those the president and his Administration deem acceptable.”

The brief came after 18 attorneys general from around the country, including New York, wrote a letter in August opposing the new rule.

The brief argues the rule change is in violation of federal law and would force those seeking asylum to go through an ultimately fruitless process.

Carson To Headline New York GOP Fundraiser

carsonHousing Secretary Ben Carson next month will headline a fundraiser for the New York Republican Committee.

Carson, a former presidential candidate, radio host and surgeon, will be the featured speaker at the Nov. 6 event, where tickets range from $100 for young professionals to $5,000 for a full table.

Nick Langworthy became the state party’s new chairman in July, succeeding Ed Cox. Langworthy has sought to broaden the party’s fundraising base as well as increase GOP enrollment.

Decrying Italian Discrimination, Cuomo Quotes N-Word In Radio Interview

Gov. Andrew Cuomo in a radio interview on Tuesday with WAMC’s Alan Chartock said the n-word while quoting a New York Times article and talking about anti-Italian discrimination.

The interview began with the governor and Chartock discussing the controversy over a New York City project promoting prominent women not including a statue of the famed Catholic nun and saint Mother Cabrini.

Cuomo had announced Monday at the Columbus Day parade in New York City the state would fund and commission the statue.

During that portion of the interview, Cuomo discussed discrimination toward Italians in the United States, pointing to a New York Post front page that depicted him, his father and his brother as characters from The Godfather. He once again took issue with a column in The Times Union that disputed the etymology of the Italian slur “wop.”

Later in the interview, Chartock asked Cuomo about the state’s Medicaid spending. Cuomo pivoted back to Italian discrimination.

Here’s the full transcript:

Alan Chartock: An article in The New York Times says that you’ve been delaying payments by a few days to push them into the next budget year. Is that kosher? Will there be a repeat of the practice next year?

Gov. Cuomo: To tell you the truth, I don’t even — I don’t understand that fully.

Chartock: Well, if the Times said it so, it must be so, right?

Cuomo: Oh, well, yeah. Oh, the Times also said in an article the other day, appropo of nothing, they were talking about, going back to the Italian Americans because you now have me —

Chartock: I read the article, yeah.

Cuomo: They used an expression that southern Italians were called, I believe southern Italians, Sicilians, I’m half Sicilian, were called quote-unquote and pardon my language I’m just quoting the Times, n***** wops. N-word wops as a derogatory comment. When I said that wop was a derogatory comment that’s when the Times Union told me, no, you should look in Wikipedia. Wop really meant a dandy. I’m sure that’s what they were saying to me back in Queens. You’re a dandy. When they looked at me with scorn and gave me a hand gesture. So that’s The New York Times.

Cuomo has made verbal misfires over the years. Most recently, he told a woman reporter her question about sexual harassment does a “disservice to women.” He walked back a statement that America was “never all that great.”

State Dems To Consider Amendment Aimed At Inclusivity For Non-Binary Member

From the Morning Memo:

New York Democrats today will consider a resolution aimed at amending its rules to alter gender-based language in order to be more inclusive of transgender and non-binary members.

The amendment, introduced by the committee’s first openly transgender member Emilia Decaudin, will change language meant to provide gender balance in leadership and officer posts, but can exclude non-binary people.

For instance, the current Democratic committee rules make references to the “opposite” gender and gender “balance” when it coms to references for men and women. The language was included in order to provide for men and women to hold an equal number of leadership posts at the state park.

The amendment, supporters said Monday, is aimed at retaining gender diversity at the leadership level while making its rules more inclusive, such as changing the term “different genders.”

“If passed, the New York State Democratic Committee would place itself at the forefront of non-binary and gender non-conforming inclusion across the nation,” supporters said.

“Changes that are similarly comprehensive have only been passed by the Democratic National Committee, and only apply to their committee structure.”

State Democrats are meeting at the Hilton Long Island/Huntington on Long Island for their meeting.

Siena Poll: Warren And Biden Tied, NYers Back Impeachment And Removal

New Yorkers are divided along party lines when it comes to impeaching and removing President Donald Trump from office, a Siena College poll released Tuesday found.

Meanwhile, Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren is gaining ground on former Vice President Joe Biden among Democratic voters, according to the poll.

The poll comes amid multiple crosscurrents in national politics as 12 Democrats in Ohio will appear in the next televised debate this evening and Trump faces an impeachment inquiry by Democratic lawmakers in the House of Representatives stemming from his efforts to have Ukraine investigate Biden and his son Hunter.

The poll found New Yorkers, in a heavily Democratic state, support impeaching and removing the president 55 percent to 38 percent. Democrats back the process by 79 percent; Republicans oppose it by 81 percent.

Independents are more closely divided, however: 49 percent oppose impeachment and removal, 47 percent do not.

The swirling and fast moving events around impeachment, with the former vice president’s son at the epicenter, comes as Warren has gained steady ground.

A Siena College poll last month found Biden leading Warren by 5 percentage points. The poll released Tuesday found them tied at 21 percentage points each. Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders draws 16 percent of support. All other candidates are in single digits among Democratic voters, the poll found.

Still, a plurality of Democratic voters, 30 percent, said Biden is the most likely candidate to defeat Trump.

Other findings in the poll:

  • Allowing undocumented immigrants to obtain a driver’s licenses has gained support among voters. It is now narrowly supported by 48 percent of voters and 47 percent view it unfavorably. It’s an increase from a 45 percent to 50 percent disapproval in September.
  • Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s favorable rating is at 49 percent favorable, 47 percent unfavorable, virtually no change from the previous month.
  • Providing college athletes with some form of compensation for the use of their name or image is supported 63 percent to 29 percent. A similar margin, 60 percent to 30 percent, back requiring colleges to take 15 percent of revenue from ticket sales and divide the revenue among student athletes.
  • Forty percent of New Yorkers polled say they spend half an hour watching one of the 24-hour cable channels. CNN is the most trusted at 35 percent, Fox News by 22 percent and MSNBC by 21 percent. One in seven do not trust the cable news channels.

The poll of 742 registered voters was conducted from Oct. 6 to Oct. 10. It has a margin of error of 4.3 percentage points.

SNY1019 Crosstabs by Nick Reisman on Scribd

Here And Now

Good morning and happy Tuesday! Here’s the news:

Happening today:

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is in Albany with nothing public planned.

At 8 a.m., Public Advocate Jumaane Williams will appear the Association for a Better New York Power Breakfast. 1335 6th Avenue, New York City.

At 10:30 a.m., Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul will tour Hofstra University’s new school of business. Hofstra University. 148 Hofstra University. Hempstead.

At 11 a.m., the New York State Nurses Association will announce the filing of a federal lawsuit against Albany Medical Center. Albany Marriott, 189 Wolf Road, Albany.

Also at 11 a.m., Lt. Gov. Hochul will deliver remarks at a small business roundtable. Hofstra University. 148 Hofstra University. Hempstead.

At 6 p.m., the Assembly Republican task force on learning to work will hold a forum. Orleans Niagara BOCES. 3181 Saunders Settlement Road, Sanborn.

Also at 6 p.m., Lt. Gov. Hochul and Sen. Tim Kennedy will great families at a women’s health forum. Lafayette Parent Center. 370 Lafayette Ave. Buffalo.

At 7 p.m., Mayor de Blasio delivers remarks. Gracie Mansion. New York City.


The State University of New York has a new wage database that offers estimates of how much a student would earn by degree.

State lawmakers are considering a bill that would allow college athletes to receive payment for endorsements and other uses of their likeness. Similar measures have been proposed in other states and California Governor Gavin Newsom recently signed that state’s version into law.

Despite efforts by the state, poor conditions persist at New York’s nail salons, workers in the industry say.

A new study questions whether the economy benefits actually benefits from the state’s generous film tax credit program.

Environmental activists are urging Gov. Andrew Cuomo to sign a new ban on pesticides.

Immigrants have found themselves and their benefits in limbo after a federal court halted the public charge rule change.

The new Kosciuszko Bridge was meant to ease congestion for commuters going between Brooklyn and Queens, but new data released by the Wall Street Journal shows not much has changed.

Mayor de Blasio joined Errol Louis to weigh in on the battle over a statue for Mother Cabrini, the increase in cyclist deaths, and the shooting at an illegal gambling club in Crown Heights, Brooklyn.

The mayor also spoke about the City Council’s upcoming vote over closing Rikers Island, harassment allegations against NYCHA general manager Vito Mustaciuolo, and property tax reform.

Sen. Brian Benjamin has proposed a tax relief program for renters.

NBC continued to play defense in pushing back against Ronan Farrow’s new book, denying the company tried to cover up a rape allegation against Matt Lauer.

Three more women have come forward to level sexual abuse allegations against Cuba Gooding Jr.

Lawmakers in the state Senate are exploring ways to provide supplemental funds to the Child Victims Act.

The progressive challenger running a primary against Rep. Carolyn Maloney has raised more than $100,000 in less than weeks.

Rep. Nita Lowey insisted her decision to retire was not motivated by a primary challenge she is facing next June.

Bronx Councilman Ritchie Torres is proposing new whistleblower protection laws for New York City.

The Innocence Project is joining the effort to preserve the prosecutorial conduct board, a measure that is opposed in the courts by the state’s local prosecutors.

At one time, in the early 1990s, the number of inmates in New York City jails was about 22,000. Today, the population is about 7,000 — and the city now says it expects to cut that number by more than half by 2026.

A delayed response time has put a snag in New York City’s 911 overhaul.

The company behind a controversial police interrogation technique is suing Ava DuVernay and Netflix over its depiction in a miniseries about the Central Park jogger case.

Overall crime is down in Suffolk County, but the county could surpass its 2018 homicide total this year.

The stars of Comedy Central’s “Broad City” are urging New Yorkers to vote the proposed city charter.

The Working Families Party endorsed replacing Columbus Day with Indigenous Peoples Day.

A nonprofit organization backing bail changes affiliated with NYU bailed out the man accused of killing homeless people in Chinatown after he attacked a court officer.

New York is seeing a spate of deadly attacks against homeless people.

A lawsuit brought by an architect against the design of the World Trade buildings is proceeding.

Once a major contributor to the local economy, the old General Electric plant in Fort Edward is scheduled to start coming down next week.

New York City is facing potentially up to 17 more sexual abuse lawsuits and millions of dollars in legal exposure as a result.

A fourth allegation has been made against former Albany Bishop Howard Hubbard.

Protesters were arrested at a festival parade in Binghamton as they demonstrated against deaths at the Broome County Jail.

New York’s Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo says communities that want to promote emissions-free vehicles can apply for part of $3 million in rebates and grants.

A federal lawsuit is expected to be filed Tuesday by the New York State Nurses Association, which represents nurses at Albany Medical Center. The union claims the hospital effectively forced hundreds of Filipino nurses to continue working there.

The Carrier Dome is an iconic part of the Central New York skyline and it’s in the midst of a makeover. Work is underway on a $118 million renovation project and there’s an update on the project.

Rochester Police Officer Denny Wright has been transferred to a rehabilitation facility for the next phase of his treatment, according to the Rochester Police Department.

With 140,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor space and some of the city’s best views of the Buffalo River, Rep. Brian Higgins believes the second floor of the old DL&W Terminal is an attraction waiting to happen.

In national news:

President Trump called for a cease-fire in northern Syria and imposed sanctions against Turkey following its incursion into the country.

A former Trump administration advisor testified to congressional lawmakers that Rudy Giuliani, the former New York City mayor and personal lawyer to the president, was running a shadow foreign policy in Ukraine.

Former National Security Advisor John Bolton called Giuliani “a hand grenade.”

The violent video shown at a pro-Trump conference was the product of right-wing activists and allies of the president.

Democrats are set to meet in another televised debate this evening, with Sen. Elizabeth Warren given the clear advantage among the frontrunners.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg held lengthy private chats with conservative pundits concerned about censorship on the social media site.

From the editorial pages:

The Daily News writes the NYPD is clearly sidestepping a transparency law.

The Buffalo News says the voters in the 27th congressional district need to pick their new representative soon in a special election.

The Times Union says state lawmakers should have the “political courage” to limit their own outside pay after courts struck down a cap on private-sector salaries.

From the sports pages:

The Packers beat the Lions in Monday Night Football.