Winners & Losers

This week’s biggest Winners & Losers

Who’s up and who’s down this week?

FYI: The airspace over New York City is now 100% up for grabs. Do you want to take a traditional helicopter tour that will rain dozens of decibels down upon lower Manhattan? Go for it! Do you think regular helicopters are tedious and prefer to pilot your own *checks notes* “personal electric vertical takeoff and landing” flight vehicle after a *checks notes* one-hour training course? Sure, that sounds super safe and functional for the whole community. Are you a giant corporation/afraid of heights? Perhaps you would prefer to send up hundreds of drones in a giant moving light display ad that millions will have no choice but to see! The sky is your oyster. (Unless Brad Hoylman can change that. Godspeed Brad.) 


Letitia James -

If state Attorney General Letitia James was looking for a shot of adrenaline into her campaign before Election Day, she may have gotten it. She announced a huge $30.5 million settlement with CBS and its former CEO Les Moonves in her sexual harassment and insider trading investigations. Moonves resigned in disgrace in 2018 when multiple women accused him of harassment and sexual assault. Nothing like a good, old fashioned #MeToo story to give James a little umph in the home stretch.

Phil Banks -

Security firm City Safe Partners has an awfully handy connection to Deputy Mayor for Public Safety Phil Banks. The security firm founded by one of Mayor Eric Adams’ top deputies received part of an MTA contract to guard subway turnstiles against farebeaters. While City Hall and the firm deny that Banks has had anything to do with the company he founded for years – and which he’s divested from – it still must be nice for Banks to see his brainchild moving up in the city alongside him.

Joseph Reiver -

Elizabeth Street Garden, a beautiful one-acre community garden in Manhattan’s Nolita neighborhood, will remain intact as will its executive director Joseph Reiver’s hopes of protecting it from a contentious rezoning plan - at least for now. After years of fighting, a state Supreme Court judge vacated and annulled the city’s declaration that a planned affordable housing project for seniors wouldn’t have a negative impact on the surrounding area’s environment. And while the garden’s future is far from secured, the ruling marked a significant win for its supporters. How does that saying go? One person’s loss is another’s gain? Eh. Maybe that would sound better if the ones losing here weren’t seniors in desperate need of affordable housing.


James Burke -

You know what they say: no good deed goes unpunished. After being on the job for 20 years, Manhattan Criminal Court Judge James Burke will not be reappointed at the end of his term. Two years ago, Burke presided over Harvey Weinstein’s criminal trial and sentenced him to 20 years. There’s been speculation that Burke upset a close ally of Frank Carone, chief of staff to New York City Mayor Adams. But, Carone and City Hall deny having any hand in the decision to give Burke the boot.

Kara Ahmed -

This may be preschool, but the United Federation of Teachers isn’t playing around. The teachers union is reportedly planning an apparently unprecedented vote of no confidence in Kara Ahmed, the deputy chancellor of early childhood education for New York City. City workers don’t like when their jobs are in limbo – as much as their kids might like playing the game – and the union thinks Ahmed is messing around with some 400 preschool staffers.

Eric Ulrich -

New York City Department of Buildings Commissioner Eric Ulrich was in the hot seat this week, and despite his alleged history with gambling, he couldn't handle the pressure. Days after the Manhattan district attorney's office seized his phone as part of an illegal gambling investigation, Ulrich resigned from his position as buildings commissioner. Written in a statement from City Hall's press secretary Fabien Levy, Ulrich resigned to avoid drawing "unnecessary distraction for the Adams administration."