First Read - May 29, 2015

WEATHER: Sunny. New York City, high 80; Albany, high 85; Buffalo, high 78.


WINNERS AND LOSERS: While his wife was in Italy, Bill de Blasio took a jaunt of his own—to Albany. He left empty-handed, but didn’t make our losers list because a) has he ever had any luck in the capital? and b) with all the actual crime in our losers list, there just wasn’t any room:

NOT JUST KIDS: The real workers in fast food restaurants are mothers supporting families living off public assistance who need the minimum wage to be raised to $15 an hourPublic Advocate Letitia James writes in City & State:



* The Nassau County district attorney is investigating whether state Sen. Carl Marcellino improperly billed taxpayers for $20,000 in car expenses his campaign also paid for between 2010 and 2013, NBC New York reports:

* Some black leaders upset with New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio’s policies are actively looking for a candidate—possibly U.S. Rep. Hakeem Jeffries—to challenge him in 2017, the Post reports:  

* Gov. Andrew Cuomo suggested de Blasio waited too long to engage in the Legislature’s negotiations on the extension of mayoral control of city schools and rent regulations, the Daily News reports:

* Despite spending months trying to understand Cuomo, de Blasio’s aides concluded little that can be done to improve their relationship because of “fundamental power dynamics,” The Wall Street Journal reports:

* Cuomo said 103 new guards would be hired at state prisons due to an increase in attacks on officers and reiterated his hope that sending minors to other facilities can reduce the inmate population, the Times Union reports:

* U.S. Rep. Charles Rangel attended a birthday celebration and fundraiser for Adam Clayton Powell IV and praised his former rival as a worthy candidate to replace him when he retires in 2016, the Post:

* Black NYPD fleet service staffers filed a racial discrimination lawsuit against the NYPD, alleging the city routinely denied them promotions for mechanic jobs that go to primarily white people, the Post reports:

* After backlash from New York City Council members, the de Blasio administration reversed plans to pull money from free youth summer programs and direct it to struggling schools, The New York Times reports:

* At a contentious hearing, New York City Taxi and Limousine Commissioner Meera Joshi scoffed at criticism that proposed rules for app-based car services could impede innovation, the Times reports:

* De Blasio’s support of the Boston Red Sox has complicated his reception in the city, yet his passion for baseball has informed his management philosophy, vocabulary and kept him awake beyond his bedtime, the Times reports: 



For too long, New Yorkers have lived with a broken housing system. Seventy years of rent control has not solved the housing shortage nor helped with affordability. New York needs new solutions, ones that support the operations and rehabilitation of apartments and ones that don’t subsidize the wealthy. Let’s Rethink Housing. Community Housing Improvement Program (CHIP): Housing Advocates Since 1966. Join our mailing list




* The Post writes that de Blasio’s cool reception in Albany shows making political speeches in Iowa and California and whining about New Yorkers not appreciating you is a poor way to get what you want from the state: 

* The Daily News writes that the New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission should recognize it has “no hope of ruling” an evolving market and should let customers vote with their smartphones:

* The Times Union writes that “it’s essential” that state and federal regulators examine the proposed merging of Time Warner Cable and Charter Communications and what it may mean for New Yorkers:

* In a response to an op-ed that ran earlier this week in City & State, Jolie Milstein of NYSAFAH argues that tying prevailing wage to the 421-a tax abatement will lead to less affordable housing:



Projects getting millions of dollars in tax breaks to build housing aren't ensuring that workers who build it earn a middle class wage. Irresponsible developers like L+M are using reckless contractors with track records of stealing workers’ wages.

People who work in this city should be able to afford to live in this city. Public funds come with public responsibilities. Tell Albany. It's time to fix 421a. Visit to learn more and take action.




* City & State and Up4NYC hosted a panel discussion on the 421-a tax break for developers and Mayor Bill de Blasio’s affordable housing plan. Watch it here:

* Watch City & State’s On Healthcare event, featuring state Medicaid Director Jason Helgerson, state Health Commissioner Howard Zucker, New York City Health Commissioner Mary Bassett, HHC’s Ram Raju and more:



WHO’S HIRING: To advertise your employment opportunities in City & State First Read, email or call 646-442-1662.  


Executive Assistant, Albany Lobbying Firm

Description: Albany-based lobbying firm seeks Executive Assistant comfortable working in fast-paced environment.  Successful candidate has administrative support experience and proficiency in Microsoft Office. Responsibilities: opening office, directing calls, monitoring daily news of interest, managing primary lobbyist’s schedule and call list, outgoing and incoming meeting requests, and general support for firm’s lobbyists.

Further Info: To receive more information about this opportunity, please send resume and any other qualifying documentation


Senior Advocacy Advisor for State Affairs, UJA-Federation of New York

Description: The Senior Advocacy Advisor for State Affairs will organize and execute activities that will deepen UJA-Federation’s relationships with government and community leaders, enhance the government resources available to UJA-Federation beneficiary agencies, and be UJA-Federation’s primary lobbyist in Albany. As appropriate, the Senior Advisor will work with lay representatives and senior professionals of the Financial Resources Division and the Department of Government and External Relations to develop appropriate public affairs programming and advocate efforts that enhance the ability of UJA-Federation agencies to serve the poor and vulnerable. This position will require significant travel to and time in Albany during the legislative session.

Further Info: To apply, please send resume and cover letter


Labor Relations Specialists – Long Island/Hudson Valley Region, CSEA

Salary: $54,587 w/ excellent benefits/career ladder

Description: Hudson Valley and Long Island Regions of New York State CSEA, New York's leading union, is seeking resumes for Labor Relations Specialists serving the Long Island areas of Nassau and Suffolk counties and the Hudson Valley areas of Ulster, Westchester, Sullivan, Orange, Rockland, Dutchess and Putnam counties. Requires knowledge of labor relations, ability to negotiate/administer contracts, resolve employer/employee conflicts. Operate independently & schedule workload. Drivers license/car for business use.

Further Info: To view the full job description and apply, please visit:


Executive Director, AfterSchool Works! NY: the New York State Afterschool Network

Description: ASW:NYSAN seeks a dynamic leader committed to educational equity, youth development and advancing opportunity for New York’s youth.  The Executive Director will help shape and implement strategies that strengthen the capacity and commitment of the state, communities, programs, and professionals to increasing access to high-quality programs beyond the traditional classroom.

To view the full listing:



HAPPY BIRTHDAY: To Dan Quart, Assemblyman … and toRobert Sweeney, former assemblyman.


MOVING ON: Brendan Landry is now U.S. Rep. Dan Donovan's district director … Adria Finch, an economic development specialist at the Downtown Committee of Syracuse, will join the Syracuse mayor’s Office of Innovation as project manager …Sam Edelstein, previously at the Syracuse University Office of Alumni Engagement, has been named analytics coordinator at the Syracuse mayor’s Office of Innovation … Addison Spears, a senior marketing associate at Tully Rinckey, PLLC, will work as the analytics coordinator at the Syracuse mayor’s Office of Innovation … Jonnell Robinson, director of the Syracuse Community Geography Program at Syracuse University, has been tapped to serve as the university fellow at the Syracuse mayor’s Office of Innovation … Erin McGill, education policy analyst at the Manhattan borough president’s office, is leaving for Glen Falls ... and Peter Ebright will join the New York Water Taxi as executive vice president.



With New York City facing an affordable housing crisis, the 421-a program, which is set to expire on June 15th, is critical to creating 80,000 affordable housing units. Nothing should get in the way of creating the affordable housing and local jobs we need. Learn more.




Mayor Bill de Blasio is in New York City with no public schedule.

8:30 a.m. - State Sen. James Sanders Jr. hosts a community clergy breakfast, New Haven Ministries, 130-05 101st Ave., Queens.

9:30 a.m. - PBA President Pat Lynch, UFA President Stephen Cassidy and hundreds of police officers and firefighters rally to condemn the mayor’s disability proposal for NYPD officers and firefighters injured in the line of duty, City Hall steps, Manhattan.

10 a.m. - The Brian Lehrer Show features New York Times sports columnist George Vescey, filmmaker Sebastian Junger, author Pumla Gobodo-Madikizela and film and theatre producer Eric Abraham, WNYC.

10 a.m. - The Assembly holds a public hearing to examine the availability of children’s mental health services in Western New York, Buffalo City Hall, Common Council, 13th floor, 65 Niagara Square, Buffalo.

10 a.m. - The New York City Council Committee on State and Federal Legislation meets, Committee Room, City Hall, Manhattan.

11 a.m. - Gov. Andrew Cuomo, New York City Public Advocate Letitia James and others make an announcement about nail salons, Library at The General Society of Mechanics and Tradesmen of the City of New York, 20 W. 44th St., Manhattan.

11 a.m. - U.S. Rep. Joseph Crowley holds a press conference to announce legislation to rename the Jackson Heights Post Office in honor of Queens LGBT heroes Jeanne and Jules Manford, Jackson Heights Post Office, 7802 37th Ave., Queens.

11 a.m. - State Sen. Jeff Klein and Madison Square Garden officials hold a basketball clinic with New York Knickerbockers alum Felipe Lopez, P.S. 107, 1695 Seward Ave., Bronx.

11 a.m. - Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul delivers remarks at the First Phase Launch of the IBM Buffalo Innovation Center, Key Center North Tower, 50 Fountain Plaza, Suite 400, Fourth Floor, Buffalo.

11 a.m. - The Capitol Pressroom features City & State reporter Ashley Hupfl for this week’s Winners and Losers, Daily News Albany Bureau Chief Ken Lovett, NRDC New York Legislative Director Richard Schrader, Rockefeller Institute of Government Deputy Director for Operations Robert Bullock, New York State Law Revision Commission Chair Peter Kiernan and Sierra Club President Aaron Mair, WCNY, listen here:

11:30 a.m. - The New York City Council Committee on Community Development, the Committee on Youth Services and the Committee on Finance holds executive budget hearing, Council Chambers, City Hall.

12 p.m. - James attends dedication service for Shirley Caldwell, DC37, 125 Barclay St., Manhattan.

12 p.m. - New York City Councilman Carlos Menchaca and advocates hold a press conference to call for the expansion of the Key to the City initiative, City Hall steps, Manhattan.

12 p.m. New York City Councilman Donovan Richards and NYCHA Deputy Director Brenda Allen announce the next phase of CCTV surveillance cameras is near completion at the Ocean Bay Houses, corner of B54th St., and Rockaway Beach Boulevard, Queens.

12:30 p.m. - Elected officials and Bronx Science alumni announce the co-naming of West 205th Street between Goulden and Paul avenues as “Bronx Science Boulevard,” The Bronx High School of Science, 75 W 205th St., Bronx.

12:30 p.m. - New York City Comptroller Scott Stringer attends state Sen. Bill Perkins third annual Senior Citizen Day, Adam Clayton Powell, Jr. State Office Building Plaza, 163 W. 125th St., Manhattan.

12:30 p.m. - Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz and other elected officials hold a press conference to announce the completion of rehabilitation work at a tax-delinquent property, 1745 Abbott Rd., Lackawanna.

1 p.m. - The New York City Council Committee on Higher Education holds executive budget hearing, Council Chambers, City Hall, Manhattan.

1 p.m. - Assembly Majority Leader Joe Morelle and FASNY representatives hold a press conference to announce the introduction of legislation requiring smoke alarms in the state be equipped with sealed 10-year batteries, Laurelton Fire Department, 405 Empire Blvd., Rochester.

1:30 p.m. - Stringer delivers remarks at the New York State Nurses Association Public Sector Conference, Sheraton New York Times Square Hotel, 811 7th Ave., Manhattan.

1:30 p.m. - Elected officials and Raise the Wage advocates hold a press conference to announce a major national push to rally women to support Cuomo’s wage board to raise the wages statewide for fast food workers, steps of City Hall, Manhattan.

1:45pm - James speaks at Women's Coalition Fight for $15 Rally, City Hall Steps, Manhattan.

5:30 p.m. - Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer joins New York City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito and Councilmember Rosie Mendez for “Follow Me Friday” tour of the East Village.

6 p.m. - James receives honor at the NYCOSH Annual Awards Celebration 52 Broadway, Manhattan.

6:45 p.m. - Brewer presents proclamation at West Side YMCA reception, West Side Y, Parkside Lounge, 5 W 63rd St., Manhattan.

7 p.m. - Hochul Delivers Remarks at Daemen College’s Distinguished Speaker Series on Buffalo’s Economic Renaissance, Daemen College, Alumni Lounge, First Floor, Wick Campus Center , 4380 Main Street, Amherst.

8 p.m. - Brewer speaks at Shakespeare in the Park’s Manhattan Borough Night, Delacorte Theater, Central Park, W 81st St., and Central Park West entrance, Manhattan.

7 p.m. and 10 p.m. - Inside City Hall features The FridayReporter's Roundtable with Capital's Terry Golway, WNYC's Andrea Bernstein and Mara Gay of the Wall Street Journal , Time Warner Cable News NY1.



Join the New Museum’s IDEAS CITY Festival, exploring questions of transparency and surveillance, expression and suppression, participation and dissent, and the enduring quest for visibility in the city. The conference features a Mayoral Panel and an address by The Honorable Julián Castro, Secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, who will be introduced by NYC Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito. The keynote is at 10 a.m. on Friday, May 29, at the Great Hall at the Cooper Union. FREE with RSVP.



KICKER: “I’ve waited over 20 years, almost my entire adult life, for a Democratic mayor. For him to be a Boston Red Sox fan? Come on.” – Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. on New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio’s favorite baseball team, via The New York Times.