Tuesday, February 22, 2011

State Legislators Running Away From Ethics Refroms

 If You Want Ethics Reforms Vote the Bums Out

Good Government groups, reforms, editorial boards and the business community have to understand that this group in Albany is stuck in incumbent protection mood.  They should have been pushing an entire package of election reforms and not limiting themselves to non partisan redistricting.  What congressman in this state supports non partisan redistricting.  At least Rangel has the guts to say so. * Cuomo: I’m An Impatient Governor * A CSEA spokesman said the possibility of a contract deal between the union and the Cuomo administration by April 1 “looks less and less likely with each passing day,” potentially leaving a $450 million hole in the executive budget.

True News PM News Update
News Since the Morning Papers
Daily News columnist Juan Gonzalez wins a Polk Award for his hard-hitting work on CityTime scandal (DN) * Thune Won’t Run for President ... S.D. senator leaves GOP field a little less crowded.  * PCB Leak Found At Bushwick Elementary School (NY1) * Mayor Bloomberg: Staffing Cuts Didn't Hamper Efforts At Major Brooklyn Fire  *  Gadhafi orders destruction of several oil pipelines, cutting off flow to sea ports - (TIME)* Boys and Girls High School hangs on -- barely -- as other school are closed.  * Grandparents Raising Kids Face Cuts (NYC News Service) * Judge rules NYPD must turn over shooting reports (NYP) * Bill Banning Smoking in Parks Signed Into Law(NYO) * Indiana House Dems Flee State(The Daily Beast) * Amazon Offers Streaming Videos * Democrats trigger Statehouse showdown | The Indianapolis Star | indystar.com  * Looking back at and behind the huge, and for Bloomberg very convenient, test score surge (Gotham Gazette) * “The governor’s office may be on expert on the governor’s office; the governor’s office is not an expert on the city,” said Mayor Bloomberg* The state pension fund is now worth $140.6 billion.* * More than 600,000 people were stopped and questioned by police last year - the highest number since the NYPD began releasing the data in 2002. (NYDN)* Nasdaq is exploring a joint bid for the parent company of the New York Stock Exchange* Rahm Emanuel Wins Chicago Mayoral Race * *Disgraced EMT accused of ignoring dying pregnant woman charged with shoplifting (NYP)

 Senate's Vermont Hideout?

The next big thing: Legislators fleeing their respective states. Would New York senators go to…New Jersey? Vermont? Massachusetts? Canada?(YNN)

Rangel: "Keep Political Redistricting" 
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 * Charlie Rangel has tax tips. Two whole newsletters worth. Enter irony here.  * Ed Koch is liking the looks of Cuomo's redistricting committee.

Teacher Attack

Cuomo Needs A "Time Out"

NYSUT Unleashes It’s First TV Ad, Says Cuomo Needs A ‘Time Out’ * Teachers' Union TV Ad Attacks Cuomo's Budget Cuts (NYT) * City Room: Teachers' Union TV Ad Attacks Cuomo's Budget Cuts  (NYT)

How Albany Handles Special Interests Contributors 

Poach Recipients Illegally

$100M Medicaid marketing furor (NYP HMOs are using the money to poach patients from rivals -- illegally (NYP)


Fire: Unions Blames Layoffs
City Says Dispatcher Made A Mistake 
Mix-up probed in fatal B'klyn fire A dispatching error delayed the response of a second engine company to Saturday's deadly five-alarm fire in Brooklyn, prompting the FDNY to launch an internal probe * Error Delayed Fire Dept. in Fatal Brooklyn Blaze(NYT) * FDNY reviews dispatching error at fatal fire(WSJ) * Firefighter's Association blaming this weekend's fatal Brooklyn fire on staffing cuts. * Fire Tragedy: How a firetruck was delayed “over a minute” to a blaze where one person died. (The New York Times) * Mayor Bloomberg: Staffing Cuts Didn't Hamper Efforts At Major Brooklyn Fire

NYT Loves Bloomberg's Budget
Seeking Changes to teacher seniority, pension reform and for the city to get its fair share in revenue sharing.

Great budget if your not a teacher, parent who sends their child to day care, senior who goes to a center to be closed and someone who uses city hospitals.  It a good budget to the NYT and their Wall Street buddies Mr. Bloomberg’s Not-So-Bad Budget Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s budget for the next fiscal year is less painful than expected. (NYT Ed) * “The City Council should soften some of these cuts, starting with child care, and, if necessary, find ways to squeeze that $30 million out of those rich New Yorkers who have recovered so nicely,” says the Times, which is also pleasantly surprised the mayor’s budget is less onerous than expected.


Bloomberg Just Plays Bad

Some of Bloomberg’s proposed budget cuts are just for show

Budgeting NYC: “The mayor’s just playing bad-guy,” says Nicole Gelinas (cityhallnews.com)




Security chief for key New York City agency investigated for helping pals exploit overtime, vacation (DN)

Markowitz Forgetsaboutit

Marty faces heat over bias-claim testimony Markowitz said in court on a sexual-discrimination lawsuit filed by his former communications director, Regina Weiss that he does not remember being called in the middle of the night at home and being left voice messages over the weekend.(NYP) * Brooklyn BP Marty Markowitz apparently gave contradictory testimony in a bias-claim case that alleges he runs his office like a “frat house.”

In 1988, Markowitz, indicted for campaign related felonies, pleaded guilty to misdemeanor charges of illegally hiding the sources of $25,000 in political contributions to his unsuccessful 1985 campaign for Brooklyn borough president. He was fined $7,500 and sentenced to perform 75 hours of community service.


Senate Democrats Party Days Over

Dems tighten purse strings 7 senators adjust to having smaller budget





 Snow Removal By the Inch?

What Quincy Can Teach New York City Pay contractors not by the hour but by the inch to remove snow in about one-fourth of the city. (NYT Ed)



Council Thumps Schools

The City Council has 10's of millions to rehab their council building but does not have enough money to remove the PCB from the lights in 3/4 of the school buildings. Officials Keep Pressure on City to Deal with PCBs in Schools Brooklyn Daily Eagle * NYC City Hall renovation

 Mob Union Bypassing Again?

 Contractors Try to Bypass Unions  Major construction contractors are gearing up to go around union chiefs and directly reach out to members to get them to agree to reductions in wages and benefits (WSJ) 



Redesigning Medicaid: It’s like “Tammany Hall” says the editors. (Wall Street Journal)




Results of Union Protection

City contractor pays 2.5M fine for stiffing 24 sewer workers; cheated employees will get wages back  (DN)




Unofficial Bronx “Mayor”  Protects and Cleans Up

Keeping a Watchful Eye on a Part of the Bronx(NYT)


New York 'political power couples' dole out advice on how to avoid sex scandals and more.

Slaughter’s Solution To NY’s Sex Scandal Problem

 So Goes Wisconsin . . .  So Will Go America . . . Epic Fight

What Wisconsin can teach N.Y.: Compared to Scott Walker, Andrew Cuomo almost looks timid (DN)Christie Ducks Questions on Wisconsin Union Battle (WSJ) * Political Fight Over Unions Escalates(WSJ) * Wisconsin vs New York: Cuomo seeks modest concessions; Walker seeking to “cripple” public employee unions, says Hammond. (DN) * Wisconsin-style bill hits Florida 


Meet The Amazonian Guard – Qaddafi’s All-Female Security Force (Mediaite)




Olbermann’s Job: “I’m the news director,” he tells Cindy Adams. (New York Post)

Keith Olbermann Re: Current TV: “I’m In Charge”



Stewart: How the Heck Is Wisconsin Like Egypt?




Jeter laughs off mansion comments made by Yankees owner






 It’s D-Day for Rahm Emanuel and his bid to become mayor of Chicago. 

The question now is whether he’ll win outright today or have to go to a runoff.