First Read September 11, 2019

September 11, 2019
Latest News
The New York City Council Ethics Committee voted to investigate an unnamed council member for potentially breaking the city’s conflict-of-interest law, refusing to name the member until the allegations are substantiated.
State Sen. Shelley Mayer will announce a series of roundtables around the state, and a public hearing in New York City, that will give experts, parents and others a forum to highlight problems with the state’s much-critiqued "foundation aid" formula.
Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg is stepping into the campaign to combat vaping, announcing a $160 million push to ban flavored e-cigarettes in at least 20 cities and states.
The Working Families Party and its supporters used the Public Financing Commission’s first public hearing to make the case that the commission, which has the power to make legally binding changes to election law, should keep its hands off fusion voting.
An ambitious review of New York's gambling landscape will take longer than initially planned, which is already a month behind, as state officials restart their search for a firm to conduct the analysis.
Sean Spicer, President Donald Trump’s first press secretary, is providing strategic advice and doing direct mail for Republican Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis’ congressional campaign.
Plans to limit solitary confinement in New York City jails were pushed back again despite a wide-ranging push for an overhaul after the June death of 27-year-old Layleen Polanco, and now a plan won’t be presented until next month.
Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie said there’s no appetite within the state Legislature to combine the presidential primary with another primary election for congressional and state seats, despite a push to do so from Gov. Andrew Cuomo.
The state Department of Financial Services is pursuing legal action against some of the opioid industry's top players, including Johnson & Johnson and Purdue Pharma, accusing them of defrauding New Yorkers of $2 billion over a decade.
Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie said there’s no appetite within the state Legislature to combine the presidential primary with another primary election for congressional and state seats, despite a push to do so from Gov. Andrew Cuomo.
The state Department of Financial Services is pursuing legal action against some of the opioid industry's top players, including Johnson & Johnson and Purdue Pharma, accusing them of defrauding New Yorkers of $2 billion over a decade.
De Blasio will introduce a measure that will provide benefits to the families of city workers, like traffic agents and sanitation workers, who died as the result of 9/11-related illnesses after their work at and around Ground Zero.
Slot Number: 
2
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio campaigned on a promise to end income inequality, but a new report from the Manhattan Institute finds the city has only made modest gains in closing the gap between its richest and poorest residents.
Slot Number: 
1
Conservative Party attorney Ralph Lorigo said the plaintiffs in its and the Working Families Party’s lawsuits to protect fusion voting from a commission that could eliminate it had a “great deal of problems” serving the legal papers, delaying proceedings.
New York City would have to consider whether potential contractors demonstrated unresponsive, hostile or uncooperative behavior during City Council investigations before giving them business under a bill set to be introduced on Thursday.
Transportation Workers Union Local 100, which represents New York City transit workers, will release numbers showing that assaults against workers have “soared” from 61 in the first eight months of 2018 to 85 in the same time period this year.
In the wake of the suicides of nine police officers in New York City this year, the City Council will consider a bill aimed at boosting mental health services for cops across the city, the heart of which would require the NYPD to hire clinicians.
Cars belonging to Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie’s office have been caught speeding by traffic cameras seven times since 2016, including two times in 2019, and the drivers won’t face any consequences beyond a lecture from the speaker on safe driving.
State education officials have been bombarded with more than 140,000 public comments opposing a plan that would boost governmental control over private and religious schools.
The New York City Council is planning to repeal the ban on conversion therapy it passed with much fanfare just two years ago, an unusual maneuver designed to sidestep a lawsuit from an anti-LGBTQ hate group based in Arizona.
Slot Number: 
3
New York City Councilmen Mark Levine and Mark Treyger said that the city should conduct outreach for the thousands of students and school staffers exposed to dangerous conditions around Ground Zero following 9/11.
Slot Number: 
2
A bill meant to make it easier for state workers who volunteered at the World Trade Center site in the aftermath of the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks to file claims for sick leave was signed into law by Gov. Andrew Cuomo.
Slot Number: 
1
Once more, families gathered at Ground Zero, where nearly 3,000 people died 18 years ago, and took part in what is now an annual rite of remembrance that follows a familiar, somber script.
Editorial Pages
Public officials and the general public often dismiss the Orthodox Jewish community as irrelevant and insular, but not de Blasio, who identifies as a progressive, yet seemingly contradictorily, is a staunch supporter of Israel, Assemblyman Simcha Eichenstein writes.
As news stories multiply about the possible dangers of using e-cigarettes, Buffalo’s mayor has called a timeout on vaping and New York’s governor has begun to crack down, and both are welcome moves in light of the recent health scares.
A generation of young adults has a hazy understanding of Sept. 11, 2001, and in the years since, young men and women have gone overseas to fight America’s longest war, and a war barely connected to that terror threat but sold as an extension of it.
From City & State
National Politics
In Depth
In the past few years, population growth in the New York City and Los Angeles areas has stalled, and for the first time in decades, the nation’s two biggest metros are getting smaller at the same time.
Though it’s been a long road back for lower Manhattan since 9/11, the nearly two decades since the attacks have been transformative, and while the rebuilt World Trade Center complex isn’t quite finished, it’s getting closer and closer to completion.
At the root of the many problems the New York City Board of Elections has are partisanship, patronage and, as some put it, collusion between the two major parties in order to protect the politically powerful at the expense of regular voters.
20190920