Monday, February 21, 2011

SOS: Albany Back to Its Old Games

Skelos and Silver sabotaging gov's cuts

The leaders of the Legislature are up to their old political tricks, privately opposing Gov. Cuomo's efforts to cut spending while publicly proclaiming the opposite, key legislative insiders have told The Post.(NYP). Skelos signaling he'll delay passage of the budget beyond the April 1 due date rather than vote for the governor's proposed cuts in funding for Long Island schools.  Silver is privately insisting on renewing the Cuomo-opposed $5 billion-over-two-years tax on those making over $200,000 and signaling that he, too, will hold up the budget beyond April 1.

True News PM New Update 
News Since the Morning Papers

Groceries, Clothing Will Soon Cost You More Money(WCBS TV)

Rangel: "Keep Political Redistricting"
Rangel also weighed in on the question of independent redistricting, which is something the governor is pushing via the program bill he sent to the Legislature last week. Not surprisingly, the congressman seems to think the current system of drawing legislative and congressional lines words just fine, thank you very much.Rangel On The Power of Legislators, Meaning of Independence

No Courage/ No Albany Change
Budgeting NYS: “The bottom line is that neither Skelos nor Silver has the political courage to do what the state needs,” says “a source close to the budget negotiations.” (NYP)
In normal times the games played by legislators, some would call it negations would be settled the last minute by the three men in the room with a financial gimmick putting the states financial health in worst shape.  This year the state is on the edge of bankruptcy and our new governor entire reputation is on the line.  There is some much pressure on Cuomo to win with this budget that if he does the old Albany two step and makes a deal he will surely join the fail governors club of Spitzer and Paterson.  The talks over ethics reform drag on in Albany. * Cuomo Seeks to Curb Aid to Schools Sharing Tasks (NYT) * State Sen. Malcolm Smith says Cuomo's communication skills leave room for improvement. * Budgeting NYS: “The bottom line is that neither Skelos nor Silver has the political courage to do what the state needs,” says “a source close to the budget negotiations.” (New York Post)

 Barron Attacks Cuomo on his Refusal to Keep Tax on the Rich

“How are you tonight, Charles [Barron]?…I can’t see who it is, but I know who it is,” said Cuomo.

A.M. Roundup: Caucus weekend and Cuomo (TU)Gov. Cuomo speech drowned out with yells of 'Tax the rich!'(DN) * 'Tax the rich' pol disrupts gov's speech (DN) * Barron leads ‘shame on you’ chant against Cuomo (TU) *  Cuomo Disrupted, Pressured At Caucus Gala (YNN) * A Caucus surprise for Gov. Cuomo courtesty of Charles Barron (DN)* New Jersey TV Station Is Accused of Failing Its Audience (NYT) *  Cuomo Seeks to Curb Aid to Schools Sharing Tasks (NYT) * (NY1) * City Councilman Robert Jackson led a similar chant earlier in the day. * Cuomo Digs In (Video) * Charles Barron Explains Interruption(NYO)

Barron Attacks Cuomo Unions Attack Bloomberg UFT Ad Attacks Bloomberg on School "Cuts"


"You have to be living in a vacuum to not understand that . . . the expenditures in this state have to be cut."

Judge Lippman's budget vacuum(NYP Ed)

Pension Waste Not Covered by the Press

While the NYP and DN goes after fireman and other city employees pensions they never write about the connected who waste millions of the pension funds with consultant and Wall Street fees not to mention bad investments.  Instead of going to jail for pay to play corruption the connected pay a fine.  Happily sometimes the fine a the legal fees is enough.  Feds lien on lobbyist: Leading Albany outfit run by ex-Silver aide owes $720G The missed payroll tax payments are said to stem from nearly $2 million in legal and other costs Lynch incurred fending off a probe by then-Attorney General Andrew Cuomo. Cuomo accused Lynch of trying to curry favor by arranging big campaign donations to then-Controller Alan Hevesi, who faces up to four years in prison after pleading guilty to overseeing a massive kickback scheme.Cuomo also found that Lynch had "preferred access" to the controller and high-level staff, and twice tried to get the state pension fund to approve investments proposed by her lobbying clients. The firm agreed in December to pay the state $500,000 to settle the matter, but did not admit to any wrongdoing. (DN)




Manhattan DA’s Suit against Indy Party




Cuts to Police, Fire and Hospitals Cause Death

Union links fire death to $$ cuts (NYP)

Brooklyn Woman Dies as Blaze Displaces 100 (NYT)

UFA: Engine Co. Reductions Hindered Response To Fatal Brooklyn Fire (NY1)



Silver Lawyer Cost Assembly Democrats Voting Supermajority 

Dem Frank Skartados doomed by vague election law crafted by his own lawyer State election law doesn't - and in races as close as the one for this Hudson Valley seat, it could make all the difference. "New York law offers very little guidance as to when a full recount is required," elections law expert Jerry Goldfeder said. "The law needs to be clarified." Skartados lost by 15 votes with no recount. With Skartados Silver loss veto-proof, Democratic supermajority.

Snow way to run the subways: MTA is flaky on new equipment

An MTA planning document from February 2008 stated that the authority should spend $9.5 million to buy eight new and powerful snow thrower cars "in order to ensure the tracks are kept clear, and service is not compromised in winter storms." It still hasn't purchased the big rigs. (DN)


NYS Lost 1.5 Million Middle Class During the Last Decade

Rising Property Taxes Overwhelm Many Who Are Living on the Edge (NYT) *NY Taxes: “The New York Times recently interviewed four families who said that rising property taxes were sending them over the edge of financial stability.” (The New York Times)



 Albany Micromanages Education Failure

LIFO rule will undo the math The "last in, first out" law requiring that teachers be laid off based on seniority over merit could put a bull's-eye on the newer staffs at more than 200 small city schools opened in recent years to bolster student achievement.(NYP) Is There A Difference? The Post moves its crusade against “last in, first out” from the editorial to the news pages.(YNN) * The Times urges the Legislature to act with caution on proposals to alter the GED testing system.* The long and costly process of disciplining tenured teachers is getting in the way of budget cuts, which will have many fired. * Funding Cuomo: As he calls for school consolidation, Cuomo lowers reimbursement rate for schools that actually do. (The New York Times)


San Gennaro is Italian Pride

A line in the 'San' Gennaro-cuts fury(NYP)



School Safety agents: It was hop-in-sack or get sacked (NYP)





Are the Mets Owners Hiding Something

Mets’ Owners Guarded an Investment Pipeline Among those referred by the Mets’ owners, one had to agree to odd and puzzling terms that restricted direct contact with or questioning of Mr. Madoff. Sterling Equities, the family company that owns the Mets, would administer all the referred accounts and handle the transactions between the investors and Mr. Madoff’s firm. (NYT)


Promising A Guest Who ‘Everyone Will Want To Watch’ Piers Morgan Books Larry King



NYC's future well-being requires that mammoth water filtering plant in Bronx be only one of its kind (DN Ed) * Watering NYC: “city must do all in its power to maintain the Catskill/Delaware watershed” or risk spending $30 billion on constructing 80 acres worth of filtration, in 2017. (

Green Hypocrisy: Bike advocacy group wastes paper. (New York Post)

Map of Gun Ownership in NYC

Law and Order ‘GoodFella’ wants to be a good fella (NYP)Promising teen was led astray, Rev. Calvin Butts says Described Afrika Owes as a promising student who was lured into the ranks of a Harlem street gang. (DN) * Cops suppressed evidence while teen spent three years in jail: suit (DN) * 'Rip-offs' by Con Ed impostor (NYP) * 16-year-old gunned down in the Bronx (NYP)

Terrorism  The FBI is tracking sales of hydrogen peroxide, but not because it suspects blonds have more fun (DN Ed)



Unsettling New Details Emerge From Lara Logan Attack In Tahrir Square (Mediaite)


Wisconsin Puts Obama Between Competing Desires (DN) * Moderate Republicans Offer Deal in Wisconsin(WSJ) * The battle over public employees in Wisconsin has put President Obama in a difficult position.* The NJ gov declined to weigh in on the Wisconsin battle, even though he campaigned for fellow GOP Gov. Scott Walker.* Almost $250,000 raised by the netroots for WI Senate Dems.. that's an amazing number