Eric Adams’ first 100 days
Public safety and homelessness were among the key issues Adams focused on in his first three months in office.
Sunday marks the 100th day of the Eric Adams mayoral administration, and in his first three months in office, tackling crime and homelessness have emerged as key priorities. From early morning press appearances to late night outings, Adams has been keeping what appears to be a nonstop schedule in the first few months of his term – or as he puts it, he’s been out with the boys at night and up with the men in the morning. And while public safety appears to be a primary focus, Adams has also spent his first 100 days rolling back some of the city's COVID-19 rules and championing New York City as a hub for technology, tourism and tolerance.
Here’s a look back at City & State’s coverage of Adams’ first 100 days.
Police officer mayor’s first day on the job. From his first day on the job on Jan. 1, Adams centered on public safety. Amid a long tour around the city accompanied by reporters, Adams called 9-1-1 to report an assault that he witnessed on a subway platform. Earlier in the day, he encountered individuals sleeping on the subway – an issue he’d bring even more attention to a few days later. Despite taking questions on public safety and policing outside a precinct, Adams told City & State that “This was not a police-focused day.”
Adams raises concerns about non-citizen voting but allows it to become law.The New York City Council passed non-citizen voting in late 2021, and Adams – who had publicly supported the new law – started to raise questions about it early in his term. He specifically questioned whether people residing in New York City for a minimum of only 30 days should be included. “I understand the importance of local elections, but to give that power to someone that’s here for 30 days, I think that’s a problem,” he said. Nevertheless, Adams allowed the bill to pass into law.
Adams deals with historic fire at Bronx apartment complex: Just nine days into Adams’ term, the city saw its deadliest fire in more than 30 years at the Twin Parks apartment complex in the Bronx. Seventeen people, including eight children, were killed. In the wake of the tragedy – what was called Adams’ first big test – his real estate ties were called into question, as one of the part-owners of Twin Parks is a member of his transition team.
Hochul and Adams take tag-team approach to subway homelessness.One of Gov. Kathy Hochul and Adams’ earlier joint press conference appearances – but far from their last – was on Jan. 6 to announce a joint approach to tackling homelessness on the subway. The plan included increasing police presence and visibility on trains, and new teams of social workers and medical professionals devoted to homeless outreach. Advocates for people experiencing homelessness expressed early doubts about the plan. The Daily News reported last month that the outreach teams engage a daily average of over 650 people on platforms, in cars and at end-of-line stations.
Adams hires his brother.Adams made the first of a string of controversial appointments in hiring his brother, Bernard Adams. Thanks to a waiver obtained by the city’s Conflict of Interest Board, Bernard Adams is able to serve as senior adviser for mayoral security on a salary of $1 a year. Here’s a look at Adams’ other appointments so far.
Adams orders consolidation of city tech agencies under one authority.Adams has big ambitions for revamping how the city uses technology, and in mid-January he took a step many experts said would be needed to realize those ambitions, by ordering the reorganization and consolidation of the city’s tech offices under one authority. New York City Chief Technology Officer Matt Fraser now oversees the new Office of Technology and Innovation and additional city offices like the Mayor’s Office of Data Analytics and 311.
Adams converts his first paycheck into cryptocurrency.This one speaks for itself. Battling to become the crypto capital of the world, Adams put his money where his mouth is and converted his first paycheck to Bitcoin and Ethereum.
Adams releases his Blueprint to End Gun Violence.Adams released his most significant policy agenda in late January, unveiling a multi-faceted approach to tackling gun crimes in the city. The plan included launching modified versions of the controversial NYPD plainclothes anti-crime units, something Adams now dubs “Neighborhood Safety Teams.” He also called for rollbacks to the state’s bail reforms, but didn’t quite get all of the changes he asked for as the controversial issue was negotiated in the state budget. The first few months of 2022 have been marked by a wave of high-profile killings and hate crimes, including the killings of Michelle Go and Christina Yuna Lee, and the killings of two police officers.
Adams meets with President Joe Biden:Biden’s visit to New York in February similarly focused on gun violence – which Adams has said is an issue that needs to be tackled at all levels, including with the coordination of the state and federal government. It was at this meeting that Adams called for a “9/11-type response” to gun violence in the city.
Adams presents his $98.5 million budget:Adams followed through on his promised 3% across-the-board cuts to city agencies, unveiling a preliminary budget in February that would do just that. The city’s budget process is far from over though, and the City Council has plenty of requested changes to Adams’ plan.
Adams advocates for city control of schools, traffic enforcement: Adams has continued his predecessor’s push to wrestle control of the city’s traffic enforcement cameras from Albany. He’s also advocated for extending mayoral control of city schools. Regarding traffic enforcement, Adams has sought to “manage the city’s camera enforcement programs in addition to empowering cities to control speed limits on their streets,” including jurisdiction over red-light and speed cameras. Currently, the city must seek permission from the state legislature to install red-light and speed cameras. As for schools, Hochul proposed giving Adams a four-year extension of mayoral control that would last for the duration of his term. It’s set to expire at the end of June. The suggestion was left out of both the State Senate’s and Assembly’s one-house budgets.
Adams retools city’s vaccine mandates:In March, the mayor lifted the vaccine mandate for performers and athletes, while the directive for public and private employees remains in effect. The move was part of Adams’ push to revitalize nightlife and entertainment, and bring back tourists, after the pandemic decimated the industries. Labor unions and unvaccinated workers who have lost their jobs for refusing to comply with the mandates criticized the announcement as unfair, especially to the workers who staff the venues where unvaccinated performers and athletes also work. Also last month, Adams lifted the “Key to NYC” vaccine requirement for most indoor businesses, following Hochul’s decision to lift the state’s mask mandate for schools.
Adams dismantles homeless encampments:Adams in March ordered city workers to take down makeshift campsites set up by homeless individuals, and so far, at least 200 have been removed. In making the controversial directive, the mayor initially said that the city was not throwing out individual’s belongings, only to say the next day that items were being tossed if they were “soiled.” Advocates and news outlets have captured video that shows garbage trucks arriving at the sites and crushing unhoused people’s belongings. As of March 30, only five people whose campsites were targeted have accepted shelter.
Adams meets with questionable characters:Adams reportedly dined with Andrew Cuomo this week, at least his second public sit down with the disgraced ex-governor in a matter of months. He’s also been spotted repeatedly with Bitcoin billionaire Brock Pierce and met with anti-vaxxers, part of a concerted effort to face his critics head-on.
Adams clashes with press corps:Adams on March 31 reportedly issued a directive to all city agencies that every public communication – as minute as blooming cherry blossoms – must be run through his City Hall team before it’s released to the press. “We’re dealing with a very aggressive press corps,” he told 50-some city officials in a Zoom meeting, Politico reported, citing a recording of the meeting that was ironically leaked to a journalist. Anyone who defies the directive will be fired, Adams reportedly said. The meeting follows several tense moments with City Hall reporters in his short time in office, including a rant in February about a lack of diversity among the city’s press corps over what he deemed as unfair coverage of a visit to Albany.
Adams launches counter campaign to Florida’s billboard war:Cryptocurrency isn’t the only issue Adams is going head-to-head with Florida over. Adams issued a warm welcome to Floridians turned off by their state’s “Don’t Say Gay” law, which bans schools from teaching about sexual orientation or gender identity. Despite Adams’ harsh words over what he called a “shameful measure,” the mayor has also received criticism over his appointments with anti-gay pasts. Adams removed one of those picks – an appointee to the Panel for Educational Policy – after backlash from the LGBTQ community.
“Vegan” mayor admits he eats fish:Adams has made his plant-based diet a major part of his persona, and in February that unraveled a bit when an employee at Osteria La Baia in Midtown reportedly told Politico he sometimes eats fish. The rumor, dubbed “Fishgate” by national media, became real after a day of media frenzy that forced Adams to admit he occasionally cheats on his diet.
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