First Read

Latest News
Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie said that his chamber will not be taking up a gestational surrogacy bill that would allow a woman to be compensated for carrying a baby after concerns were raised by a number of lawmakers.
Slot Number: 
A bill that would expand the prevailing wage to any construction project that is partially funded with public money has been held up by “regional” issues according to Heastie.
Cuomo said the state will face litigation over a law allowing undocumented immigrants to obtain driver’s licenses, but he doesn’t know how it will turn out, saying its fate rests with state Attorney General Letitia James and Solicitor General Barbara Underwood.
Some upstate New York county clerks – those from Erie, Rensselaer, Niagara and Allegany counties – are saying they won’t adhere to the state’s controversial new law granting driver’s licenses to undocumented immigrants.
In the final hours of the state legislative session, lawmakers are racing to pass a key update to the freshly minted rent regulation law that would fix a provision that could have the unintended consequence of dissuading developers from building affordable housing units.
Top New York City officials have reached an agreement to overhaul the way the police department operates in schools for the first time since Mayor Rudy Giuliani was in office by limiting police involvement for low-level offenses.
New data from New York City Comptroller Scott Stringer gives a snapshot of the city’s deepening affordability crisis as New Yorkers strain under rising rents and costs of living through an online “affordability index.”
When a new district attorney takes office in Queens next year, he or she will find something unusual: some $80 million in the bank from what are known as asset forfeiture funds, a rare windfall for an outer-borough prosecutor’s office.
Slot Number: 
Community groups battling development across New York City brought their fight to the doorstep of the Department of City Planning, where they demanded a halt to upzonings and an investigation into planning commissioners’ potential conflicts of interests.
Both houses of the state Legislature passed legislation to give farmworkers labor rights akin to those other hourly employees have, such as overtime, a day of rest and the right to unionize, ending decades of debate on the subject.
Slot Number: 
State lawmakers crossed party lines to approve a sweeping new set of reforms to the state’s sexual harassment laws that are designed to offer new protections for victims, both in the workplace and when they report inappropriate behavior.
Slot Number: 
Gov. Andrew Cuomo and state lawmakers brought to an end what had been called the “gay and trans panic” defense, extended the statute of limitations for rape and instituted a host of other measures to protect members of the LGBT community.
Cuomo’s budget director, Robert Mujica, is expected to join the Metropolitan Transportation Authority board despite concerns over his upstate residency and potential conflicts of interest.
State legislators spent most of the morning and afternoon flying through bills at a rapid-fire pace, completing the passage of several major issues but still having a significant volume of work left to do before wrapping up for the year.
The New York City Council adopted a $92.8 billion budget for 2020 less than a week after reaching a deal with Mayor Bill de Blasio that includes millions of dollars in extra funding for parks and libraries, and 285 more social workers for public schools.
De Blasio said Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez was wrong to describe the Trump administration’s migrant detention facilities as “concentration camps,” saying you can’t compare what the Nazis did with what’s happening now.
Rep. Gregory Meeks slammed U.S. Sens. Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren for their endorsement of insurgent candidate Tiffany Cabán in the race for Queens district attorney.
New York City Councilman Robert Holden has reported a top city Department of Education official to an ethics tribunal and the agency that investigates misconduct in public schools for urging underlings to attend a rally supporting schools Chancellor Richard Carranza.
Bronx residents are suing New York City to force four jails set to replace Rikers Island to go through separate land use review processes, the first in a cadre of threatened lawsuits to stymie plans for a new jail in every borough except Staten Island.
Editorial Pages
In some respects, the state’s wildly aggressive new climate change law is exciting, but there is also much to worry about in the legislation, particularly for upstate and its already struggling economy.
State lawmakers acted in the best interest of public health last week when they approved a measure to end the practice of some parents citing religious beliefs as a justification for failing to vaccinate their children.
Incoming NYCHA Chairman Gregory Russ looks solid on paper, but NYCHA’s problems are written in lead paint, in black mold, in fat rats, in stinking garbage, in leaking roofs and broken elevators and broken promises, so he has a lot to prove.
The New York City Council took up the next bid to kill the Central Park horse carriage industry, and it’s outrageous that hardworking drivers have to take off work to defend themselves and their horses.
From City & State
In Depth
In past years, Cuomo was the chief driver of every significant negotiation in Albany, but the recent passage of rent laws reflect the new reality that if the two Democratic chambers want to work together, there is little need to involve the governor at all.
Exactly one year after Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez upended New York’s political establishment and became a national liberal phenomenon, voters will head to the polls June 25 for another rollicking Queens race with similar overtones.
Last year, Ocasio-Cortez changed the game of politics with her historic election, and now public defender Tiffany Cabán is trying to follow as she runs on a similar momentum in the Queens district attorney race.
Marijuana legalization in New York in 2019 died Wednesday, and the cause was opposition from a group of downstate Democratic state senators who received vehement opposition from constituents, law enforcement and local school officials.
The sweeping climate plan that New York lawmakers passed sets the country’s most ambitious goals for eliminating greenhouse gas emissions, so the Times lays out what that may mean for the average New Yorker.
National Politics
President Donald Trump blamed someone “loose and stupid” in Iran for shooting down a U.S. surveillance drone, and in bellicose comments warned that “this country will not stand for it, that I can tell you.”
Slot Number: 
Roy Moore, the controversial Republican judge who lost a 2017 Senate race in Alabama, is running again to unseat Democratic U.S. Sen. Doug Jones in 2020, which could be a major roadblock in the GOP’s path to retaking a critical Senate seat.
Hundreds of mostly black spectators descended on Capitol Hill for a historic hearing on a bill that would create a commission to develop proposals to address the lingering effects of slavery and consider a “national apology” for the harm it caused.
Congressional leaders and the Trump administration left a critical meeting with no budget agreement, deadlocked over how much to raise domestic spending to avoid a fiscal calamity.