Forest City Ratner: Plausible Deniability or Victim
While the Feds says Forest City Ratner company has not broken the law, they say the lobbyists hired to get government favors have. If you believe that Ratner who won $750 million for his Atlantic Terminal Nets Stadium project in Brooklyn did not know what his lobbyists were doing you should apply for a job as a reporter in New York.
Deep Throat Said Follow the Money, So Why is Nobody Following Where Ratner's Lobbyist Got Their Bribe $$$ . . . Maybe They Donated It?
$$$ For Love or Bribery A couple of months ago another lobbyists for Ratner Richard Lipsky pleaded guilty to bribing Carl Kruger $250,000. It has not been answered where Lipsky who was paid $3,500 a month got the half of million he paid to bribe Kruger. Federal prosecutors claimed in court yesterday that former chairman of the Yonkers' GOP Zhey Jereis paid former Yonkers' Councilwoman Sandy Annabi $175,000 to change her negative vote that was blocking a mega development. Zhey was a lobbyist hired by Forest City Ratner at $60,000 a year to get the Rose Hill project approved in Yonkers. Zhey lawyer explained his client’s payments to Ms. Annabi as resulting from his romantic feelings for her. Prosecutor Tells How Ex-Yonkers Councilwoman Got Secret Payments(NYT) * Ridge Hill trial opens, but mystery persists regarding Forest City Ratner's role in compensating accused consultant who paid accused Council Member(Atlantic Yards Report)
Permanent Government Using Lobbyists for the Dirty Work to Shield Themselves From Corruption
How Bruce Ratner Wins Approval for his Projects Using Lobbyists (True News)
Nice work, except for felons(TU) The Times Union calls for the loophole allowing ex-Sen. Nick Spano to continue serving as a gambling lobbyist, despite his plea on felony tax evasion charges, to be closed. The Times Union wants to ban convicted felons from lobbying.
The teacher evaluation deal struck Thursday will bring approximately $1 billion in federal funding to the state
State officials, union reach agreement on teacher evaluation system (NYP) Historic deal on teacher grades * N.Y. Officials and Union Agree on Teacher Evaluations(NYT) * A Sound Deal on Teacher Evaluations(NYT Ed) * Teacher Evaluation Deal Reached(WSJ) * State, Teachers Union Agree To New Evaluation System(NY1)* Governor Cuomo grownup in teacher evalution appeals(NYDN) * Deal Done, Mayor Still Plans to Close Struggling Schools(NYT) * Bloomberg said the agreement resolved “the lion’s share of issues,” between himself and the UFT, but the union isn’t happy he’s pushing forward with plans to close and reopen NYC 33 schools while firing half their teachers. * Observers Get Key Role in Teacher Evaluations(NYT)
What Editorial Says About the Teacher Deal
It’s a deal! (NYP Ed)The Post gives the deal a generally positive review, but says it’s problematic that the agreement relies on the United Federation of Teachers to implement its terms in good faith
A Sound Deal on Teacher Evaluations(NYT Ed) The Times cheers the teacher evaluation deal brokered by Cuomo, saying it will improve instruction of students across the state
Cuomo’s teacher evaluation deal is a big win for schoolchildren (NYDN Ed) The Daily News says the “friction” remaining between Bloomberg and the teachers union over specifics won’t be enough to derail the deal
Teacher eval plan gets teeth (Newsday Ed) Newsday says the teacher evaluation deal “is actually where then-Gov. David Paterson and those unions pretended to be two years ago”
DiNapoli Objects Often
Gov rips union man DiNap on pensions(NYP) * DiNapoli Opposes Cuomo On Gambling, Silver On Member Items(YNN)
Another Cuomo 11th Hour Deal Coming on Redistricting
Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s three requirements to avoid his veto of LATFOR’s maps: “A constitutional amendment, a law that would make a change, and better lines…fairer, less hyper political lines.” *
Liu Fundraiser Pleads Not Guilty To Wire Fraud Charges (NY1) * Fund-Raiser for Liu Pleads Not Guilty to Fraud Charges(NYT)
NYT Kicks Grimm Ass Again
Romney Campaign Distances Itself From Congressman(NYT) Michael Grimm – who had been one of Mitt Romney’s most prominent New York supporters – is now outs the outs with the Republican frontrunner
Evan Stavisky's Parkside Creates A Racial Fight in Buffalo
In 2010 Parkside got paid over $2 million dollars to run campaigns for Democratic Senate Campaign Committee. 5 days before the election Parkside placed ads in the Buffalo's papers try to smear Grisanti because his father a lawyer was appointed by the Buffalo courts to represent a murder. The day after the Parkside ads were placed over 250 democratic and republican lawyers placed their own ad blasting Parkside client Democratic Senate incumbent Antoine M. Thompson. A couple of days later Grisanti beat Thompson by less than 500 votes.
Blacks Attack GOP Grisanti News District
Senate redistricting proposal comes under fire Groups representing African-American voters in Buffalo slammed the district Republicans are attempting to create for politically vulnerable state Sen. Mark Grisanti, the Buffalo News. The way the DSCC has hired Parkside to regain the senate for them in 2012. Lots of luck. * Minority Groups Push Cuomo On Redistricting(YNN)
Albany Has Found A Way to print Money
Racino $2B sure thing (NYP) A report released by a pro-gambling group says the state’s nine racinos pumped $2 billion into the state economy and $1 billion into its coffers last year
Quinn Must Decided If Lobbyist Giske's KFC is Still Finger Licking Good
Did Quinn Block Sick Pay Bill to Help Her Lobbyists Friend?
Why is paid sick leave coming back as a political issue after being declared DOA by City Council Speaker Christine Quinn? Union insiders say part of the reason is that the political calendar is getting closer to New York City mayor’s race – and paid sick leave could well become a litmus test issue. Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer highlighted it his State of the Borough address, while the New York Times’ recent story about Quinn’s close ties with lobbyist Emily Giske noted that Giske represents the parent company of Kentucky Fried Chicken, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell. Giske’s firm, Bolton St. John, lobbied against the bill on behalf of Yum Brands, which could give opponents an opening to attack Quinn for shelving it. With more attention again being paid to the issue, supporters held a press conference yesterday to tout a study saying the city would save $28 million annually in emergency room costs if there were mandatory paid sick leave. (City and State)
Judge Grants Churches a Reprieve(NYT) * Churches at Schools Get a Reprieve(WSJ) * Appeals Court Upholds Ban on Worship in Public Schools(NYT)
Sharpton Drops the F Bomb As PA Police Repo His SUV
The Rev. Al Sharpton’s SUV was towed at La Guardia Airport due to what officials said was a “lack of insurance” despite his raising holy hell to prevent it. (Sharpton says he needs a driver because he doesn’t have a license).
Cornell Taps Dean for Tech Campus(WSJ) Cornell tapped Daniel Huttenlocher, currently dean of computing and information science, to oversee the development of its 2 million-square-foot tech campus on Roosevelt Island in NYC.
New York Times foreign correspondent Anthony Shadid survived shooting and kidnapping, only to be felled by an asthma attack in Syria at the age of 43. RIP.
President Obama raised $29 million in January, his campaign tweeted. * The Republican Jewish Coalition accused President Obama of wanting to “weaken” Israel. * Santorum & Romney are selling nostalgia in Michigan. * White House Stops Pretending It Has a Debt Plan - Philip Klein, Examiner * 3 Pieces of Advice Romney Should Ignore - Michael Crowley, Time * Romney Without a Cause - Michael Gerson, Washington Post * Key Super Tuesday Prizes: Georgia & Ohio - Erin McPike, RealClearPolitics * Santorum's Small Thinking - New York Times * Jack Lew holds Jewish outreach meeting in New York (Politico)
Law and Order
Congress Will Auction Public Airwaves to Pay for Benefits(NYT) * Win in Long Effort to Set Wireless Network for First-Responders(WSJ) * Payroll Tax Cut Deal Will Help Fund National Broadband Communications System
Bronx ‘Teflon rapist’(NYP) A Bronx man whose DNA was matched to three sex attacks is set to walk free thanks to a botched prosecution and a string of evidence problems * Bronx DA's office bungles rape case(NYDN) * New City Policy on School Workers' Pasts(NYP)* Chancellor Vows to Fire Those Guilty of Sexually Abusing Students(NYT)