First Read Tonight – January 11, 2018

WEATHER: Mostly cloudy in New York City, a chance of rain in Albany and rain in Buffalo. New York City, low 49; Albany, low 47; Buffalo, low 46.

 

FROM CITY & STATE:

* State Sen. Jeffrey Klein’s primary opponents are capitalizing on the sexual misconduct allegation made against Klein by a former staffer, issuing statements on Twitter condemning Klein and demanding accountability.

* Klein isn’t the first elected official in Albany to be accused of sexual misconduct. Here’s a rundown of a dozen state officials who have been ensnared in sex scandals, and how those scandals played out.

 

NEW THIS AFTERNOON:

* Erica Vladimer, the former state Senate staffer who accused Bronx state Sen. Jeffrey Klein of forcibly kissing her, said Albany’s “insidious” culture of sexual harassment kept her from reporting the incident, the Daily News writes.

* State Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan and state Sen. Elaine Phillips, the chairwoman of the state Senate Ethics Committee, said the Senate had no jurisdiction to conduct an investigation into the sexual misconduct complaint against Klein, Politico New York writes.

* State Senate Deputy Majority Leader John DeFrancisco said there should be an investigation into the sexual misconduct allegation made against Klein, though he cautioned that the allegation could become a political vehicle in the fractured chamber, the Times Union writes.

* New York City Council Speaker Corey Johnson doled out key committee posts to allies of the county Democratic leaders who helped elect him, with City Councilman Daniel Dromm leading the finance committee and City Councilman Rafael Salamanca Jr. as land use chairman, the Daily News writes.

* New York City Councilmen Jumaane Williams and Ydanis Rodriguez were among nearly 20 people arrested in lower Manhattan while protesting the detention of an immigrant rights activist who’s battling deportation, the New York Post reports.

* More news below …

 

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* Opioid deaths increased slightly in Erie County last year, part of a continuing nationwide trend that U.S. Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer hopes to stem by insisting on more federal funding to combat the epidemic in a spending bill that must be finalized by the end of next week, The Buffalo News writes.

* The mother of the child blamed for the Bronx fire that killed 13 people last month was “a person known to authorities” and child welfare workers, and New York City failed to supervise her, according to court documents that pave the way for a $110 million lawsuit against the city, the Post writes.

* Erie County Legislator Lynne Dixon sent a letter to County Executive Mark Poloncarz asking the administration to release and detail all of the harassment settlements in Erie County government that have been paid for by taxpayers over the past five years, The Buffalo News reports.

* The state budget faces a number of looming challenges, including faltering tax revenue, increasing costs for Medicaid and education and the capping of state and local tax deductions by Congress, according to credit rating agency Moody’s, State of Politics writes.

* Retail food stores – which includes grocery stores, health food stores and even drugstores – in New York will receive letter grades to reflect the results of their most recent health inspection, the Times Union writes.

Got inside info? Email us: tips@cityandstateny.com.

 

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NATIONAL POLITICS:

* The House of Representatives voted to extend the National Security Agency’s warrantless surveillance program for six years with minimal changes, rejecting a yearslong effort by a bipartisan group of lawmakers to impose significant new privacy limits, The New York Times writes.

* A bipartisan group of senators working to resolve the status of young undocumented immigrants, border security and restrictions on legal migration programs has offered an opening bid on an immigration agreement and is seeking signoff from the White House, The Washington Post reports.

* Millions of Americans will need to use a new Internal Revenue Service online calculator to ensure their new paychecks are accurate, Trump administration officials said Thursday as they issued guidelines for implementing the recently passed tax law, The Washington Post reports.

 

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Join NYN Media for Nonprofit BoardCon on January 24th at the Museum of Jewish Heritage for a day of informational session on the collaboration between boards and staff. We will have executive leaders of New York’s nonprofits and board members engage in lively discussions ranging from: Responsibilities, Governance, Diversity, Recruitment and Retention and more. For more details and ticketing please click here.

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IN DEPTH:

* During the New York City Council speaker race, Corey Johnson promised to have a diverse senior leadership team and central staff, but on his council staff and his re-election campaign, he has seemingly surrounded himself with almost exclusively other white men, Gotham Gazette writes.

* Achievement First, a charter school network serving primarily low-income black and Hispanic students, has set about designing a new school model that leaders hope can maintain high expectations and strict rules, while letting students develop independence and a sense of identity, the Times writes.

* The de Blasio administration’s first Bronx rezoning is quickly moving through the approval process, and CityLimits produced a video tour with resident Frank Amato to offer a local perspective.

 

CORRECTION: Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s op-ed about how to end the opioid crisis that was included in First Read on Thursday morning was written for Bloomberg View.

 

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Join City & State NY for the P3 Summit & Awards on January 31 at New York University for a day-long, dynamic program of candid discussion and thought-provoking presentations on the complexities of public-private partnerships and the ways to successfully execute and manage P3s. Hear from top leaders and experts like Patrick Foye, President of MTA and Robert Galvin, Chief Technology Officer of The Port Authority of New York & New Jersey. For more details on programming and tickets please click here.

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TONIGHT’S SHOWS:

7 p.m. and 10 p.m. – “Inside City Hall” features Erica Vladimer, a former staffer to state Sen. Jeffrey Klein who accused him of sexual misconduct, NY1.

8 p.m. and 11 p.m. – “Capital Tonight” features state Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner Basil Seggos, Spectrum News.

 

TOMORROW’S SKED:

9 a.m. – Rep. Adriano Espaillat hosts his annual Martin Luther King Jr. Day policy breakfast, Adam Clayton Powell Jr. State Office Building, 163 W. 125th St., Manhattan.

10 a.m. – The Assembly Insurance Committee holds a public hearing for the examination of recent title insurance regulations in the state, Legislative Office Building, second floor, Hamilton Hearing Room B, Albany.

10 a.m. – “The Brian Lehrer Show” features New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, WNYC.

10 a.m. – Rep. Dan Donovan meets with his Brooklyn Veterans Roundtable, 1305 86th St., Brooklyn.

10:30 a.m. – Hoosick Falls residents and advocates demand a new source of clean drinking water, state Capitol, outside the state Senate Chambers, Albany.

11 a.m. – “The Capitol Pressroom” features City & State Editor-in-Chief Jon Lentz, Syracuse Mayor Ben Walsh and state Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner Basil Seggos, WCNY.

12 p.m. – The Long Island Association is holding its annual State of the Region Report with state Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan, Nassau County Executive Laura Curran and Suffolk County Executive Steven Bellone, Crest Hollow Country Club, 8325 Jericho Turnpike, Woodbury.

2 p.m. – Donovan holds a press conference to discuss his amendment that would require the U.S. Department of Defense to reanalyze its housing assistance formula for Staten Island veterans who are attending school, College of Staten Island, 2800 Victory Blvd., Building 1P, Room 116, Staten Island.

4:30 p.m. – Rep. Nita Lowey delivers remarks at vigil for eighth anniversary of Haiti earthquake, Konbit Neg Lakay Community Center, 16 E. Church St., Spring Valley.

 

TOP TWEET: I just asked @AndyKingNYC whether he was surprised he got a commitee because of sexual harassment investigation. He then walked away.

-Courtney Gross @courtneycgross