First Read - August 26, 2016

WEATHER: Mostly sunny in Western New York. Scattered showers and thunderstorms in the rest of the state. New York City, high 93; Albany, high 88; Buffalo, high 82.



* Autumn is right around the corner, and with it the onset of the election season. So while you still can, take a cue from Mayor Bill de Blasio: Schedule some time off, kick back and help us decide who were the biggest Winners & Losers.

* If City Council members like Jimmy Van Bramer and Ydanis Rodriguez want to celebrate the concept of affordable housing and oppose it in practice, they will only get more unaffordable residential developments in their districts, Ross Barkan writes.

* City Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer explains why he is opposing Phipps Housing’s proposed housing development in Sunnyside and the reasons for the lack of community support.



* In a ruling that appears to bolster Sheldon Silver’s appeal of his public-corruption conviction, a federal judge said that the former Assembly speaker can stay out of prison at least until Oct. 27 while he awaits a decision, The Wall Street Journal reports.

* One day after signing his fourth ethics bill into law since taking office as governor, Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who is facing criticism from both sides, said there's still more work that's needed to be done, Time Warner Cable News reports.

* The Coalition for the Homeless found a shortage of supportive housing has helped drive homelessness for single adults to record highs and blames Cuomo for his failure to follow through on a pledge to create 20,000 such units, the Daily News writes.

* If New York regulators fail to approve the recently announced sale of the FitzPatrick nuclear plant by Nov. 18, the state will owe plant owner Entergy Corp. a termination fee of $35 million, the Syracuse Post-Standard reports.

* State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman will unveil a new policy that affirms the right of any employee in his office “to openly be who you are” and maps out a process for staff and supervisors to follow in dealing with gender transition, the Daily News reports.

* More news below …



We want to hear from you! City & State is compiling a list of the 50 most influential people in the five boroughs. Our Staten Island list is now out. But you can still nominate people for Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens and the Bronx.  The person CANNOT be an elected official and they must live in the borough. Click here to nominate.



* Citing a clause in a 40-year-old law, the NYPD has suddenly decided to keep records regarding the discipline of officers under lock and key — and will no longer release the information to the public, the Daily News reports.

* The Times and The Marshall Project traveled the state to report on the prison system and examines how many reforms that were promised back in the 1970s after a four-day rebellion at Attica Correctional Facility were never made or have been rolled back.

* As Uber and other app-driven car services chip away at the taxi industry’s control of the market, a new study of whether Uber was contributing to congestion in New York indicates taxi-utilization rates have fallen, making it easier to find a cab, the Journal writes.

* At the same time, crashes involving Uber and other app-driven car services have tripled over the past two years, which is the only major jump in numbers involving TLC-licensed automobiles during the same period, the Post reports.

* According to a new $20 million lawsuit, a longtime investigator is calling out Brooklyn District Attorney Ken Thompson for firing her because she’s a close ally of his predecessor and claims she was demoted and replaced by someone who worked on his campaign, the Post writes.  



ORGANIZED LABOR Issue Spotlight:  Promote your union’s profile to NY’s public officials in this focused government relations messaging venue – coming out right before Labor Day!  City & State magazine’s comprehensive special section features: Public Officials Q&A with: Roberta Reardon; I. Daneek Miller; Jack Martins; Editorial Coverage: Unions & Elections; Construction Safety; Labor Strikes; The ad deadline is Aug. 25 and the issue date is Aug. 29.  For further information, please contact




* The Community Service Society’s David Jones joins New York Nonprofit Media’s CEO Corner podcast to affordable transportation, summer jobs for students, rent hikes, reducing the cost of college and a host of other issues.



Are your friends, clients, or colleagues New York City rising stars? Every year, City & State honors 40 exceptional individuals under the age of 40 working in NYC government, advocacy, media, and more! Who will be in the class of 2016 New York City Rising Stars? Click here to nominate!




* The Times’ Lawrence Downes knocks Silver’s successor for his Assembly seat, Alice Cancel, and writes the quality of new candidates running in the September primary have an opportunity to move beyond Silver’s legacy and bring real change and reform to the district.

* The Daily News writes that Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association President Pat Lynch made an abhorrent choice in tapping as the union’s Person of the Year Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke Jr., arguing he has escalated a war between police and reformers.  

* The Post commends the city Department of Education’s move to extend its contract with Pearson to provide entry exams into the city’s specialized schools and writes de Blasio has succeeded in seeing more qualified, well-prepared minority students earning admission to elite high schools.



* Donald Trump’s mixed signals about easing his plan to deport all illegal immigrants are dividing his closest allies and prompting warnings he could lose core supporters if he abandons the signature issue of his campaign, the Journal reports.

* A series of racially charged accusations dominated the presidential campaign Thursday, with Hillary Clinton accusing Trump of “taking hate groups mainstream,” while Trump repeatedly called Clinton a “bigot” toward African Americans, The Washington Post writes.

* Clinton has opened up a 10-point national lead over Trump in a new Quinnipiac University poll of likely voters, the latest sign of the Democratic nominee's momentum as Trump wades through self-inflicted controversies, Politico reports.

* Stephen K. Bannon, the new CEO of the Trump campaign, allegedly roughed up and threatened his wife during their marriage, she claimed in court documents obtained by the Post.

* Despite Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr.'s decision to boycott Trump's golf course in Throgs Neck over his comments on Mexicans and Muslims, his campaign said it could not return a donation that Trump had made to Diaz in 2012, DNAinfo reports.



Get a dose of health care! City & State’s State of NY Health forum presented by Heritage Network Provider will take place on October 27th at the New York Academy of Medicine. This forum will explore advances in healthcare treatment for at-risk communities, how government is embracing new technology to improve everything from basic health services to complex medical issues, and what New York City and state is doing to combat it’s biggest health risks, such as the Zika virus. Dr. Howard A. Zucker, Commissioner of Health for New York State and Jason Helgerson from the New York State Department of Health will each deliver keynote remarks at this event. Come hear from our panel of experts including Dr. Ram Raju from NYC Health and Hospitals Corporation. Click here to RSVP!



HAPPY BIRTHDAY: Today, to Assemblyman Fred Thiele … to Arthur Cheliotes, president of CWA 1180 … to Paul Steely White, Transportation Alternatives' executive director … to Frank Sobrino, deputy director of communications for Gov. Andrew Cuomo … to Nicole Garcia, borough commissioner for the New York City Department of Transportation … and to Karen Boykin Towns, vice president of corporate affairs at Pfizer .. on Saturday, to Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul … to Assemblyman J. Gary Pretlow … to Bob Kerrey, client projects leader at the Carmen Group ...  to co-founder of TheSkimm Danielle Weisberg … to former New York City Councilman Archie Spigner … to Alexander Rias, former director of the Black, Latino, and Asian Caucus at the New York City Council … to Carol Robles Roman, Legal Momentum's president and CEO … to Saleem Cheeks, counsellor of public affairs for Eric Mower and Associates … to Martha Ayon, community and political organizer for NYSNA … and to Matt Hynes, former assistant to the Nassau County Democratic Elections Commissioner … on Sunday, to Kay Sarlin, executive vice president of public affairs and strategic initiatives at Empire State Development Corporation … to Mark Lieberman, director of research, New York City Vicinity Carpenters Labor- Management Corp … former Board of Regents Chancellor Merryl Tisch … and to Natalia Salgado, director of advocacy for state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman.



CITY & STATE CAREERS – WHO’S HIRING: To advertise your employment opportunities with City & State, email or call 646-442-1617. Visit www.CityandState.Careers to view all jobs.

Account Manager, Kirtzman Strategies

Kirtzman Strategies, a growing communications firm, is looking for a mid-to senior-level strategist to oversee accounts. We’re looking for a great writer with excellent client management skills, a superior media sense and a deep understanding of government and politics. Must thrive in a fast-paced, campaign-style work environment. Agency experience preferred.




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

Mayor Bill de Blasio, first lady Chirlane McCray, and Chiara and Dante de Blasio left New York City on Sunday for family engagements in Vermont, Massachusetts, Rhode Island and Connecticut and will return to New York City on Sunday, Aug. 28. They have no public schedule.

9:30 a.m. – U.S. Rep. Carolyn Maloney, Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul and Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer attend the opening bell ringing of the New York Stock Exchange in recognition of Women’s Equality Day, 2 Broad St., Manhattan.

10 a.m. – State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman speaks at the New York State Fair’s Rainbow Flag Raising, 581 State Fair Blvd., Syracuse.

10 a.m. - Assemblyman Ron Castorina Jr. announces plans to introduce legislation seeking to standardize yellow light signals to shine for four seconds throughout New York, corner of Huguenot Avenue and Woodrow Road, Staten Island.

10 a.m. – “The Brian Lehrer Show” features Rutgers University’s Carlos Ball on LGBT Beyond Marriage Rights where the LGBT movement goes next, The New Yorker’s Jennifer Gonnerman on prison reform, and more, WNYC.

10:30 a.m. – New York City Schools Chancellor Carmen Farina visits Excellence Girls Uncommon Charter Elementary School, 794 Monroe St., Brooklyn.

11 a.m. - Brewer, New York City Public Advocate Letitia James, Rep. Carolyn Maloney, state Sens. Liz Krueger and Roxanne Persaud, Assembly members Rebecca Seawright, Linda Rosenthal, Carmen Arroyo, Annette Robinson, Nily Rozic, and Jo Anne Simon, and New York City Councilwoman Darlene Mealy hold Women’s Equality Day rally and press conference, , City Hall steps, Manhattan.

11 a.m. – New York City Councilman Ritchie Torres, the Belmont BID and Community Board 6 announce an Italian Disaster Relief Fund and efforts to help the victims of the Italian earthquake, Belmont Library, 610 E. 186th St., Bronx.

12 p.m. – Schneiderman speaks at the New York State Fair’s Fallen Officers Memorial, 581 State Fair Blvd., Syracuse.

1 p.m. - Hochul and other women leaders launch NYS Women’s Suffrage 100th Anniversary Commission and celebrate Women’s Equality Day, Redbury New York, 29 E. 29th St., Manhattan.

1 p.m. – State Senate Candidate Marisol Alcántara unveils her housing agenda on NYCHA repairs, rent regulation, Mitchell-Lama and more, 3333 Broadway, Manhattan.

6 p.m. - Assemblyman Michael Blake interviews with PBS 13 “Metrofocus,”

7 p.m. and 10 p.m. – “Inside City Hall” features Jay Newton-Small, author of “Broad Influence,” and The Friday Reporters Roundtable with Politico New York’s Laura Nahmias, WNYC’s Brigid Bergin, The Daily Beast’s Harry Siegel and MSNBC’s Beth Fouhy, Time Warner Cable News NY1.

7:15 p.m. - Hochul delivers remarks during Lackawanna Community Days celebration, Lucarelli’s, 1830 Abbott Road, Lackawanna.

8 p.m. – Brewer attends Unity in the Community Basketball Showcase, Samuel Bennerson Playground, West 64th Street between Amsterdam and West End avenues, Manhattan.


KICKER: “All I said was, ‘Hey Big Bird, I’m coming for you.’ Then he waved to me like, ‘c’mon.’ I said, ‘New York needs a change from your nonsense and you’re going to get thrown out because I’m running against you.’” – Former NYPD detective Bo Dietl recounting how he told Mayor Bill de Blasio he would run against him in a Democratic primary, via the Post.