Nick Reisman

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Here And Now

Good morning and TGIF! Here’s the news.

Happening today:

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is in Albany and has nothing public planned.

At 9 a.m., VOCAL New York and other advocates will rally in Queens for charges against Peggy Herrera to be dropped. Queens Criminal Court. 125-01 Queens Blvd. Queens.

At 9:30 a.m., New York City Public Advocate Jumaane Williams will speak at the In My Mind conference, 63 5th Ave., New York City.

At 10 a.m., Mayor de Blasio will be on WNYC.

Also at 10 a.m., Rep. Elise Stefanik will hold a town hall event. Malone AMVETS Post 8, 1474 Co HWY 25, Malone.

At 11 a.m., Mayor de Blasio will be delivering remarks. Battery Park Police Memorial Wall. 385 South End Ave., New York City.

At 3 p.m., Rep. Stefanik will host a town hall event, Kingsbury Volunteer Fire Company, 3715 Burgoyne Ave., Hudson Falls.

At 5:15 p.m., Public Advocate Williams will speak at the Black Girl Takeover Weekend screening. 1000 5th Ave., New York City.

At 6 p.m., state and city lawmakers and officials will hold a workshop for survivors of domestic and gender-based violence. The Bridge Multicultural Project. 1894 Flatbush Ave., Brooklyn.

Headlines:

A special session in December? Assembly Democrats will meet in December in Albany as a recommendations from the public financing commission will be released.

Gov. Cuomo is yet to sign a bill that would limit President Trump’s ability to pardon people accused of crimes by New York prosecutors.

Attorney General Letitia James’s office will not be challenging court decisions that struck down outside income restrictions for state lawmakers.

With 11 votes in favor and 2 opposed, the City Council’s Land Use Committee took a rare step Thursday to block the construction of any future correctional facility on the land in the East River between Queens and the Bronx that is now home to the city’s most notorious jail complex.

Transportation officials are putting the brakes on a major stretch of the West Side Highway.

Democratic Rep. Nita Lowey on Thursday announced she will not seek re-election to the congressional seat she has held for the last 31 years.

Speculation is now being stoked that Chelsea Clinton would run for the seat Lowey vacating.

Sen. Gillibrand returned home to the Capital Region to help further a bill called the “Build Local, Hire Local Act.”

President Donald Trump’s call to have foreign governments investigate former Vice President Joe Biden and his son Hunter do not rise to the level of an impeachable offense, said Republican Rep. Elise Stefanik on Thursday to reporters before a town hall-style event in Johnstown.

A Stefanik town hall event today is expected to be heavily staffed by law enforcement amid expectations supporters and opponents of President Trump will be there.

Residents at a town hall held by Democratic Rep. Anthony Brindisi, a Democrat who has not embraced the impeachment call, questioned the lawmaker about his support.

People with disabilities earn about 20 percent less in New York City, according to a new report.

Corrections officers in New York City have been ordered to stop calling inmates “perps.”

G/O Media has closed down the website Splinter, a vestige of the Gawker-era of websites.

Newsday has sold its free commuter newspaper am New York, and the paper’s staff penned its final editorial as the sale became official.

Assemblyman Angelo Santabarbara has revived a call for staggered start times for state workers to ease congestion in the Albany area.

Rotterdam courts could be getting a pay raise and a third judgeship under a new proposal.

Troy Mayor Patrick Madden released his 2020 budget proposal on Thursday, which included a 3.4 percent tax increase.

After allegations against Mavis Discount Tire surfaced this week that it did no perform safety work on a limousine involved in a crash that killed 20 people, mechanics say trust is everything in their business.

A Schenectady-based software company is opening another international office.

The Rochester City Council’s Finance Committee called on members of the Rochester City School District to answer questions regarding the deficit crisis at a special meeting Thursday night.

Western Regional Off-Track Betting has reluctantly released a list of people it’s given luxury suite tickets for various events in the area.

The new cashless bail system will be going into effect in New York state in just a few months, but in Erie County, the practice was adopted a year and half ago.

Democratic congressional candidate Nate McMurray is asking the judge on Collins’ insider trading case to force Collins to return his congressional salary and forfeit his pension as part of his sentencing.

The trial of actor Cuba Gooding Jr., accused of groping, has been delayed.

In national news:

Two Florida businessmen tied to President Donald Trump’s lawyer Rudy Giuliani and the Ukraine investigation were charged Thursday with federal campaign finance violations. The charges relate to a $325,000 donation to a group supporting Trump’s reelection.

The men were arrested as they were preparing to board an international flight.

Allies of President Trump’s are worried they can’t count on Senate Republicans in the upcoming impeachment fight.

The president’s frustration with Washington boiled over during a rally on Thursday evening.

Multiple national security officials raised alarms about the president’s policy toward Ukraine before and after the call with the country’s president now at the center of the impeachment controversy.

More subpoenas to Trump allies were issued.

The whistleblower who has raised concerns with President Trump’s Ukraine phone call may have worked with Joe Biden during his time as vice president.

A judge found the National Rifle Association does not have to pay the legal bills of its former president, Oliver North.

The estate of the late pop icon Prince wants President Trump’s campaign to stop playing “Purple Rain” at his rallies.

From the editorial pages:

The Times Union is worried about bees dying at an alarming rate, a concern being addressed by Sen. Alessandra Biaggi in legislation.

The New York Post slammed Senate Democrats for not adhering to a sexual harassment law the Legislature approved.

Margaret Sullivan writes the smear against Sen. Elizabeth Warren over whether she was fired for being pregnant is a sign of how poisoned the media world is.

From the sports pages:

The Astros overwhelmed the Rays to advance to the ALCS.

Believe it or not, but home runs are actually down in the MLB postseason.

Stefanik Talks Impeachment, Syria And Demonstrations

President Donald Trump’s call to have foreign governments investigate former Vice President Joe Biden and his son Hunter do not rise the level of an impeachable offense, Republican Rep. Elise Stefanik on Thursday told reporters before a town hall-style event in Johnstown.

“It is illegal to ask any foreign nation for help electorally,” she said. “I don’t think that’s what the president did in this case.”

A rough transcript of a call between Trump and his Ukraine counterpart Volodymyr Zelensky show him expressing concern about whether the country was involved in an effort to sway the 2016 presidential election. At the same time, he raises concerns with Hunter Biden’s work for a company that was previously under investigation in Ukraine.

After the call’s details were made public, the president called on China to also investigate the former vice president and Democratic presidential candidate.

“I’ve reviewed the transcript between President Trump and President Zelensky numerous times,” Stefanik said. “I’m glad that was made public. I think when it comes to the China statement, that was certainly not an appropriate statement to make, but I don’t think that was actually asking a foreign nation to support his campaign. It was not that.”

Stefanik sits on the key House Intelligence Committee in Congress. Like other House Republicans, she took issue with the process Democrats have sought to tackle the impeachment issue. She said there should be an up or down vote to being a more formalized impeachment process that was used when inquiries were opened against Richard Nixon and Bill Clinton.

“Every member of the American public deserves to know where their member of Congress stands and Speaker Pelosi has been shielding Democratic members from taking that vote,” she said.

Closer to home and near a district office of Stefanik’s has been a series of pro and anti-Trump demonstrations in Glens Falls, prompting local officials there to set limits on how demonstrations can be conducted. The protests have raised eyebrows in part for the heated rhetoric, including threats against a reporter by a pro-Trump demonstrator.

“I condemn any threats of violence, any rhetorical threats related to violence,” Stefanik said. “I don’t support that. I condemn that and I think we need to have safe, secure, freedom of speech and I think we need have our communities and the physical places were protests are safe for citizens.”

Meanwhile, Stefanik was critical of Trump’s decision to withdraw American forces from Syria, whose presence were considered a stopgap to prevent Turkey from acting against Kurdish separatists — considered key American allies in the fight against the Islamic State.

“This was misguided, it was a mistake. I vehemently disagree with the president’s decision on this,” she said, adding the U.S. needs “strong allies” in the fight against terrorism.

“It’s going to make allies question if America is really going to be there for the long haul.”

Lowey To Not Seek Re-Election

Democratic Rep. Nita Lowey on Thursday announced she will not seek re-election to the congressional seat she has held for the last 31 years.

“After 31 years in the United States Congress, representing the people of Westchester, Rockland, Queens and the Bronx, I have decided not to seek re-election in 2020,” Lowey said in a statement. “It is my deep honor and privilege to serve my community and my country, and I will always be grateful to the people who have entrusted me to represent them.”

Lowey serves as the chairwoman of the powerful House Appropriations Committee, a sign of her tenure in the House.

“As a long-time Member of the House Appropriations Committee, I have secured funding to clean up and protect Long Island Sound and the Hudson River; increase access to Head Start, afterschool programs, and community health centers for thousands of local children and families; provide New York’s fair share of homeland security assistance; and make the commute across the Hudson easier and safer on the new Gov. Mario M. Cuomo Bridge,” Lowey said.

“In difficult times, including after September 11th and Superstorm Sandy, I have fought hard in Washington for federal assistance to recover and rebuild.”

The announcement, to say the least, is something of a political earthquake for Democrats in the suburban House seat north of New York City.

Lowey’s district has long been eyed by a large bench of Democrats in elected office and her potential rise to the U.S. Senate — halted by the campaign of Hillary Clinton in 2000 — created something of a local-level bottle neck.

The district has long been considered a safe Democratic seat while she was in office.

Virtually any Westchester County Democrat who has been elected office over the last generation has eyed the seat as a capstone to a career.

Those dreams of running for the House, however, could be thwarted again for some local Democrats should Chelsea Clinton run for the seat. And, to be clear, Clinton has not shown any specific interest in the seat, which includes parts of Westchester and Rockland counties.

Lowey this year drew her first primary challenge since 1988: Mondaire Jones, a former official in the Obama administration’s Department of Justice.

Public Financing Coalition Wants To See Commission’s Draft Work

A coalition of advocacy groups this week released a letter urging the commission determining the specifics of New York’s system of publicly financed campaigns to make public a draft report of its potential recommendations.

The final set of recommendations, which could become law unless the Legislature intervenes, is not due until Dec. 1.

But the Fair Elections for New York Campaign, a coalition that includes groups like 32BJ SEIU and the Brennan Center for Justice, argue a draft report is needed.

“As we have recommended before, releasing an interim report would ensure that experts and the public have adequate opportunity to give input before the recommendations become final,” the groups said in a letter.

“This is a critical step to avoiding a rushed process close to December that could end up looking like the “big ugly” votes we are familiar with in the Legislature, and which could result in an unworkable policy. Instead, we urge you to set an early deadline for the release of a draft policy that would allow for public comment and expert review. This will give the public greater faith in the process and facilitate the creation of stronger policy in the end.”

Last week, the state’s leading good-government organizations called for a draft report to be released as well.

Enviros, Transportation Advocates Urge E-Bikes And Scooters Bill

From the Morning Memo:

A coalition of 20 organizations that range from advocates for the environment, transportation, local government and business urged Gov. Andrew Cuomo to sign a measure that would pave the way for municipalities to allow electric bikes and scooters on their streets.

The effort, led by the New York League of Conservation Voters, comes as the devices have become ubiquitous on some city streets.

The groups pointed to increased traffic, especially in New York City, which would be partially alleviated by allowing alternative forms of transportation. At the same time, the legislation would benefit delivery people who rely on the speed and efficiency of e-bikes and scooters.

“E-scooter share programs have been successful around the country, where they have been very successful in addressing last-mile transportation problems, where people may be too far from the nearest public transportation to travel on foot so they instead rely on for-hire vehicles, personal cars, or forgo public transportation altogether,” the letter states.

“E-scooters have demonstrated success in closing the last mile and displacing car trips in cities where they are legal.”

Addressing the concerns of some elected officials, the bill before the governor does not allow shared e-scooter programs to operate in Manhattan and allows local governments to enact tougher regulations if deemed appropriate.

But overall, the groups highlight the low carbon footprint of e-scooters and bikes.

“While electrification and other emissions-free technology is important for cars and trucks, we cannot meet the ambitious goals that we have set for ourselves without also reducing the total number of vehicle miles traveled,” the letter states.

“These new transportation options are already displacing private vehicle trips around the world, and can do the same in New York, complementing your strong record on transportation policy.”

E-Bike Letter NYLCV TA Final by Nick Reisman on Scribd

Here And Now

Good morning and happy Thursday! Here’s the news.

Happening today:

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is in New York City with nothing public planned.

At 10 a.m., Senate Health Committee Chair Gustavo Rivera and Assembly Health Committee Chair Richard Gottfried will take testimony regarding the New York Health Act. Memorial Art Gallery Ballroom. University of Rochester, 500 University Ave., Rochester.

Also at 10 a.m., New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio will deliver remarks. Madison Square Garden, 4 Pennsylvania Plaza. New York City.

Also at 10 a.m., Rep. Elise Stefanik will host “Coffee with Your Congresswoman” VFW Post 6912, 7744 W State St, Lowville.

At 10:30 a.m., Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul will announce statewide funding for a farm-to-school program. Waterfront Elementary School. 4th St., Buffalo.

At 11 a.m., Assemblyman Colin Schmitt will host a press conference to announce that he has been named a member of the New York State Assembly Minority Task Force on Water Quality and is bringing a public hearing to his district later this month to address the water quality issues facing the Hudson Valley. Blooming Grove Town Hall (Court Room), 6 Horton Road, Blooming Grove.

At 11:30 a.m., NYGOP Chairman Nick Langworthy and Dutchess GOP Chairman Mike McCormack will be joined by supporters in front of Poughkeepsie City Hall, 62 Civic Center Plaza, Poughkeepsie.

At 11:45 a.m., Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul will deliver remarks at the groundbreaking of Mandela Market’s expansion. 272 E Ferry St., Buffalo.

At noon, de Blasio will deliver remarks at the Firemen’s Monument. West 100th St. and Riverside Drive. New York City.

At 2:30 pm., U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand will stand with union leaders and advocates at the International Union of Painters and Allied Trades, District Council 9, Local 201 in Menands to announce her legislation, the Build Local, Hire Local Act. The International Union of Painters and Allied Trades, District Council 9, Local 201. 191 Broadway, Menands.

At 3 p.m., Stefanik will host a second “Coffee With Your Congresswoman.” Johnstown Senior Center, 109 E Main St, Johnstown.

At 4 p.m., NYGOP Chairman Nick Langworthy and Republican candidate for NY-18 Chele Farley will be joined by supporters and local officials in front of Rep. Maloney’s District Office, 123 Grand Street, Newburgh

Headlines:

Ahead of a vote this month on the approval of a plan to close Rikers Island, the City Council is submitting a new proposal to ban the future construction of new jails on the facility’s land, sources confirmed to NY1 on Wednesday afternoon.

Mavis Discount Tire falsified its records of brake work allegedly done on the limo that crashed and killed 20 people in Schoharie last October, according to new court documents filed by the Schoharie County district attorney.

The bombshell development in the limousine crash investigation, first reported by The Times Union, comes as the owner of the limousine is facing criminally negligent homicide charges.

Ronan Farrow’s new book, which alleges former Today Show anchor Matt Lauer raped a co-worker, has NBC executives worried.

Fiscal watchdog groups say New York’s increasing Medicaid costs are due to poor budgeting.

WBAI workers are planning to tape protest shows about the efforts of its parent company to shut the left-wing radio station down.

Lindsay Boylan, who is challenging Rep. Jerry Nadler in a Democratic primary, says she has raised nearly a half-million dollars for the campaign.

The ThriveNYC program, a project by New York City First Lady Chirlane McCray, is being accused of dodging questions surrounding the Chinatown murders of several homeless people.

Implementing raise the age juvenile justice law changes in New York City is off to a rough start.

As some tenants endure long waits from state bureaucrats to determine if they’ve been overcharged by their landlords, they are turning to hiring outside contractors to check their math.

There was outrage last spring when just seven black students were offered admission to Stuyvesant High School. But as middle schoolers prepare to take the entry exam for Stuyvesant and seven other elite public high schools, Schools Chancellor Richard Carranza warns little is likely to change.

Mayor de Blasio’s administration is pushing a rule that would require new hotels in Union Square to hire unionized workers.

New York City is suing e-cigarette vendors, accusing them of marketing their products to kids.

Nassau County Executive Laura Gillen is calling for an investigation after secret recordings show sanitation workers alleging they offer bribes for better routes.

Rep. Kathleen Rice says she wants tougher gun control laws meant to make it harder for domestic abusers to buy firearms.

Gov. Cuomo says the State of New York is suing the International Joint Commission over its regulation of the level of Lake Ontario.

In a visit to Rochester Wednesday, Gov. Cuomo called for legal action to address the fiscal health of Rochester City Schools.

On Wednesday in Albany, about a dozen poll workers gathered at the county board of elections to learn about how voting is changing in New York.

Rensselaer County Executive Steve McLaughlin and GOP operatives worked to pressure Republican Troy mayoral candidate Tom Reale into dropping his bid.

New legislation by Sen. Alessandra Biaggi would work to preserve beehives in New York.

Parents in Saratoga County who work nights and need to sleep during the day may soon be eligible for childcare subsidies.

New York businesses that have filed to complete sexual harassment training are out of compliance with a new state law.

More than 400 jobs will be available in Syracuse, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced. Thanks to a health care group– and a tech group.

Ahead of the November election, Monroe County Executive Cheryl Dinolfo and her opponent Adam Bello discussed an issue that many are calling a crisis in the county: Early childhood intervention.

Albany Police Chief Eric Hawkins says the biggest challenge the department currently faces is staffing. The department is budgeted for 342 officers, and currently they are short 47.

Police officers are in Kingston are working to adapt to the city’s growing Spanish-language population.

A small group, mostly unknown to each other, all came for a singular purpose: To provide a dignified farewell to a stranger who recently died alone — former Army Specialist Ambrose Jacob.

In New York’s 27th Congressional District, current Republican state Senator Chris Jacobs is leading the way in fundraising. Although the latest federal reports aren’t out yet, Jacobs said he’s raised more than $1 million and has $850,000 cash on hand.

Former Rochester City Councilmember Adam McFadden has pleaded guilty to one count of federal wire fraud.

A federal judge has denied several parties attempts to get involved in ongoing litigation regarding the legality of New York’s new Green Light Law.

Cost overruns at the George Washington Bridge bus terminal are putting retail space up for grabs.

M. Stanley Whittingham, a Binghamton University professor, is a co-winner of the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for his development of the lithium-ion battery.

Actor Cuba Gooding Jr. will begin his trial in a New York court for allegedly groping a woman at a bar.

In national news:

Former Vice President Joe Biden for the first time backed an impeachment drive against President Donald Trump.

Planned Parenthood has amassed a $45 million war chest as part of an effort to flip the Senate and oust President Trump in 2020.

An anti-Trump group is launching $1 million in pro-impeachment ads that will appear in swing states.

Former Rep. Trey Gowdy is joining President Trump’s legal defense team. He led investigations of prominent Democrats, including Hillary Clinton, while in office.

Turkey is now in its second day of an offensive in Syria, a development the president called a “bad idea” after he backed the withdrawal of U.S. troops there.

Trump also downplayed the U.S.’s longstanding alliance with the Kurds, saying they didn’t help us win World War II.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo insisted the U.S. did not give Turkey a green light to invade Syria.

Northern California is facing massive power outages as the utility PG&E tries to stem wildfire risks.

From the editorial pages:

The Daily News writes there are deadly gasp in mental health services that led to the deaths of four homeless men in a murder spree.

The New York Post criticized both Mayor de Blasio and his wife Chirlane McCray for not accepting criticism of the ThriveNYC program.

The Times Union says the return of brook trout to the Adirondacks is a case study in why a carbon tax should be introduced.

Newsday writes President Trump should cooperate with an impeachment probe being launched by House Democrats.

From the sports pages:

The Buffalo Sabres edged the Montreal Canadiens, 5-4, in overtime.

The Nats shocked the Dodgers.

The Cards blew out the Braves.

New Student Loan Advisory Board Created As Regulations Take Effect For Loan Industry

New York’s top financial and banking regulator announced Wednesday the formation of an advisory board to tackle student debt issues.

The Department of Financial Services is creating a Student Debt Advisory Board, which will consider issues like consumer protection, student financial products and services as well as the issues facing communities affected by the burden of student debt.

Members will be appointed by Superintendent Linda Lacewell for a three-year term.

“DFS is proud to be part of New York’s commitment to protecting New York students and their families, and this newly created board will ensure borrowers are incorporated into every step DFS takes, from community outreach to policy and enforcement,” Lacewell said.

“This diverse group of experts will be a significant source of market intelligence and expertise as DFS continues to respond to the concerns of student loan borrowers and ensure consumers’ interests are placed first above industry’s statewide.”

Meanwhile, new legislation is taking effect today that will require companies that service loans held by New Yorkers to adhere to standards similar regulations that govern mortgages and other lending products.

Senate Republicans Report $282K After Primary

Updated: A previous version of this post reported a prior campaign financing cash on hand total.

The campaign arm of the state Senate Republicans have $282,247 in cash on hand, according to a finance report made available following a state Senate primary in western New York to replace former Sen. Cathy Young.

The conference reported $72,121 in July for its housekeeping account, where contributions are unlimited, but spending is restricted to office-related functions.

The cash on hand total for the Senate GOP comes roughly a year before the party mounts a push to regain control of the state Senate, now firmly controlled by Senate Democrats.

The primary that triggered the release of the fundraising report for the Senate GOP was to replace Young, who is suing the campaign committee over a $100,000 payment.

Senate Democrats, who gained the majority last year for the first time in a decade, report $1.7 million in cash on hand in July. Senate Democratic spokesman Mike Murphy said the current cash on hand total is more than $3 million.

Gripper Takes Leadership Post At AQE

Jasmine Gripper has been tapped to become the new executive director of the public education advocacy group Alliance for Quality Education, the organization on Wednesday announced.

Billy Easton, a longtime fixture in education policy debates in New York, will be stepping down from his current executive director role he’s held since 2005.

Gripper is the group’s legislative director.

“The future has so much in store for AQE with Jasmine Gripper at the helm, and with all the parents, educators and students that make this work possible,” said Natasha Capers, co-vice board chair of AQE & Director for the NYC Coalition for Educational Justice.

“Together we will continue to empower Black, Brown and low income families to build the schools New York’s children need and deserve. Many thanks to Billy Easton for his years of service to AQE and his commitment to the fight for educational justice.”

The group has been at the forefront of the some of the most hotly debated education issues over the last decade ranging from funding and charter school debates, often being at odds with Gov. Andrew Cuomo.

“With Billy Easton’s leadership, the Alliance for Quality Education has established itself as a leader in the state, bringing the voices of parents and students to the forefront to demand that every child has an excellent education no matter their race or zip code,” said Rosemary Rivera, board chair and Co-Executive Director Citizen Action of New York.

“I know that Jasmine Gripper is a visionary leader who has the ability to maintain the culture of the organization to achieve success. She is strategic and her leadership style demands high expectations not only from those who work with her, but also those with the power to create the necessary changes to meet the goals of the organization,”

National Urban League Backs Sands For Downstate Casino

From the Morning Memo:

The National Urban League is joining the push to have the Las Vegas Sands gain a potentially lucrative license to operate a casino in the New York City area.

The casino company has sought to frame its effort to enter the New York City market as part of a jobs creating project, recruiting former Gov. David Paterson as a public face for the push, as well as prominent figures like NAACP New York Conference President Hazel Dukes.

“I look forward to working with Sands to make an impact on the communities that have far too often been left out of the progress and opportunities in this state,” said Marc Morial, the president and CEO of the National Urban League. “The expansion of downstate gaming will not only bring much needed revenue to the state to fund critical services, but it will provide thousands of new jobs and training programs to New York.”

Casino firms this year sought unsuccessfully to speed up the sunset date for upstate exclusivity in casino licenses. The state licenses four commercial casinos with table-top gaming in the Finger Lakes, Schenectady, Hudson Valley and Southern Tier.

Casino operators can have access to the New York City market by 2023 based on an enabling law that dovetailed with a constitutional amendment allowing table-top gaming in the state.

The push from casino operators including Sands and Genting have led to public efforts to position themselves as potential recipients.

“The National Urban League has a strong reputation of success in establishing business relationships around the country, and we look forward to partnering together in New York,” said Paterson, a senior advisor to Las Vegas Sands.

“Our main focus is to provide equal and unparalleled opportunity for all New Yorkers, and through this partnership and the expert knowledge of the National Urban League, I am fully confident that we are putting forth our best team to get the job done.”

But the struggles of some of the upstate casinos, along with what experts have said is a glut in the northeast market of gambling options, have led to complications for operators. Several casinos, both commercial and those run by Native American tribes, have introduced sports books in recent months to take advantage of new laws and regulations allowing bets on sporting events.

Meanwhile, Michael Levoff, formerly a top lobbyist for Genting and a corporate development executive for the company in the United States is joining Las Vegas Sands, the company said.

He was most recently the chairman of the New York Gaming Association.

Levoff led Genting’s push to work with Nassau OTB as well as the ongoing expansion of Aqueduct racino to include a 400-room hotel as well as secure slot machines for the company in Orange County at Woodbury.