Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Dysfunction BOE Whose Only Passing Grade is in Corruption Comes Up With Rube Goldberg to Count the Runoff

Board of Election Plan B

BOE Math Failure and Nobody in A City of 8 Million Notices
The BOE which took over three months to count just the paper ballots in the 2012 elections. Now has a plan to count all the votes in a citywide runoff, which will have hundreds of thousands more votes, in less than 2 weeks.  It is one thing to count the 2012 results where nobody but the BOE cares about to cover their asses and get the job done.  It is quite another standard to count a primary which if close will end up in court. A court ordered recount will take weeks if not months, as candidates fight over the meaning of each ballot.

120 Days After the 2012 Election the BOE Found More Votes

There are only 14 days between the mayoral primary and runoff The New York City Board of Elections approved a contingency plan for potential runoff elections in the three citywide primary races, with plans to use new electronic voting machines but also print ballots before the results are official Board Of Elections Approves Contingency Plan For Potential Mayoral Primary Runoff Election(NY1)

Political Corruption

 Carrión's Illegal Cash Money
While serving as Bronx borough president, New York City mayoral candidate Adolfo Carrión created a political fund that regularly made large cash disbursements without specifying what the money was for, a violation of state election law
Adolfo Carrion's mayoral campaign hits new snag as improprieties with borough president war chest discovered(NYDN) Money from Carrion's campaign fund during his days as Bronx borough president have expenditures that are unaccounted for, the News has learned.
City Board of Elections spokesman says BXNY PAC may have violated laws that forbid political committees from distributing more than $100 in cash and for not detailing the purpose of spending over $50. Records show there were $15,800 in unspecificed cash payments.  The existence of the political committee, BXNY PAC, was not widely known until now. It received $172,000 in contributions, mostly from developers and other business interests with dealings in the Bronx, records show. Carrion’s committee made cash payments of $500 — $15,800 in all — but didn’t specify what the money was for, records obtained by The News show.

Asked Adolfo Carrion if I could ask him about Daily News article. Reply:" "You cannot."


Albany's Secret Ethics Dance
 How to Cover the Speaker Ass and Get Vito Lopez for  Hush Fund Scandal
The Assembly Ethics Committee spent two hours in a closed-door meeting yesterday morning, with committee members refusing to say what was discussed, though speculation is that it involved Vito Lopez’s sexual harassment investigation, the Times-Union reports:

Campaign 2013

MCDONALD’S LONG SHOT CHALLENGE (City and State) Mayoral candidate George McDonald’s challenge to New York City’s campaign finance laws is not strong, but the potential consequences are serious, writes attorney Janos Marton: 

Catsimatidis Puts on A Play
Billionaire GOP mayoral hopeful John Catsimatidis is paying for 10 performances of Tony Lo Bianco’s acclaimed one-man show about former Mayor Fiorello LaGuardia — and giving away the tickets for free.* NYC Republican Mayoral Hopeful John Catsimatidis Spending Big On "The Little Flower"(NYDN)

“Listen, I once made a landing by myself, with one engine out. I was alone. I don’t like being alone. But I don’t sweat. Other candidates did 10 times worse things than I’ve done. Make my day. Let them go after me,” the latest mayoral hopeful, John Catsimatidis, said during his session with the New York Post‘s Cindy Adams. “I’ve never said no to anybody. I’m 64. A New York Republicrat who wants the next century’s kids to believe in heroes again.” 

County Leaders Might Stay Out of the Mayor's Race In Public
Behind the closed doors they are cutting deals with almost all of them
Gaming out the Dem chairs in mayor's race(CrainsNY)"District leaders were once the most [powerful] controllers of all political activity and patronage in their geographic areas," he said via email. "Now they are important in smaller races and as votes to keep county leaders in power. Thus, allowing district leaders to [make] their own decisions makes dissension and actions of rebellion against county leaders less likely."

Crains Mayoral Debate
: I'd hire to negotiate with the unions. Allon: Concurs with McDonald that public workers should contribute to insurance, Also mentions looking at pension contributions & attrition *Lhota: Opposed to retroactive pay in labor negotiations... But he did (because, he said, contracts required it) leave the MTA having had .... blames living wage bill for killing Kingsbridge, which he says he'd "left on a golden platter."Catsimatidis, answering a question on economic equality, trailed off mid-sentence. "Sorry, lost my train of thought."*  “: . touts the fact that he's created jobs for lower class and minority indiuduals”  

Gristedes kingpin turned mayoral candidate Catsimatidis says he would rip out bike lanes if elected. Gets big applause from the GOP audience * Someone has to say it: This Crain's debate is one big lightning round. * says ed is solution to inequality, opposes paid sick leave: it's not the role of city govt to determine HR policies * . says inequality is a problem everywhere, but role of city govt is not to mandate paid sick leave. * says he supports making sure people get a living a wage but not a clear statement that supports Council bill . asks about inequality. He stammers for a few minutes and admits he "lost his train of thought"  Tom Allon pleased to be on panel with other businessmen. 

Says listening to Dems talk about raising taxes "made my stomach turn."Catsimatidis: Reverse of standard stump line? Says he's ok with larger classes -- if the teachers are more qualified.. calls NYC teacher evaluation impasse "embarrassing" "testing has replaced learning in this city" * tours charter schools, wants more science & foreign language , reduce testing, need teacher retention. .: charter schools meant to be "laboratories for reform". Can supplement public school system * Lhota says Finance Dept is told how much in prop taxes they need to collect and then hit that #. Commissioner has denied that that happens.* 
 . says property tax system in NYC is broken. Biggest difference in last 25 yrs is lack of transparency w/ dept. of finance * The way property assessments are done is opaque and backwards, Lhota says. It shouldn't be basically the equivalent of reaching a quota. * "We're not going to get a commuters tax... Firget about it."-- cc . notes his home is famous "because it's always in the newspaper." (Taking a page from the playbook?)* supports East midtown rezoning and would continue it if Mayor * Tom Allon said it's "long overdue" for city to address unfairness in NYC real estate tax code. McDonald goes on to say he'd push for 75000 new "microunits" of housing. Also says there are older people who have more space than needed.

. says he's a union man and used to negotiate "sitting in smoke-filled rooms 2 work things out." * George McDonald, a newly minted Republican, said he has clearly separated himself from Democratic Party. He voted for Romney. RT: : Lhota -- who is a longtime Republican -- upbraids moderator for having called Rudy Giuliani, his former boss, "a jerk.". calls himself a "social progressive" & "northeast Republican." but he skipped friendly parade * Adolfo Carrion, who voted for President Obama, calls himself a "northeastern Republican. The mass incarceration of African American men may have made us safer, but it leaves...broken families": Mayoral candidate George McDonald 
 GOP mayoral forum moderator calls Rudy Giuliani a 'jerk'(NYP)
"I believe there should be competition: charter schools, close bad performing schools, evaluations, etc. * George McDonald said he opposes Bill de Blasio proposal to raise taxes to bolster pre-k."we need to have merit pay"--. cc: * . is in favor of merit pay for teachers. Says longevity should not determine when they get a raise. talks up vocational ed, . says teachers should get merit pay. * Lhota: NYC spends $19K per student now and has mayoral control. But test scores haven't improved dramatically.* Cats raises his wealth as competitive advantage. Says he has money to win Bloomberg never did that.McDonald: NYC funding 'right' to shelter: "We cannot afford to do that any longer... We have to have work" as the central focus of pol...Doe Fund founder and GOP mayoral candidate takes hard line against city's homeless shelter policy.Tom Allon, another new Republican, said he believes in nonpartisan elections. He won't disclose his choice in 2012 presidential race.* Carrion nodding as Allon talks about third-way candidacy. * Instant poll of audience by text shows Lhota won debate with Catsimatidis in 2nd. Carrion aide says candidate will talk to reporters after debate but then they tried to duck out quickly. He said he hadn't read DN story.* Bevy Of Stances In First GOP Mayoral Debate(NY1)

5 GOP Candidates?

NYGOP says of in statement: "All 5 of our candidates" addressed needs of 's people... Is that a Wilson-Pakula hint?

Candidate For Bronx Council Seat Makes Case(NY1)

Old Media's Coverage of the Campaigns

A campaign for Brooklyn BP with no real opponent is about to 1) get examined by main stream media 2) covered up 3) lightly examined with consultant spin explanations for Adams past (Choose 1)

 Another NY1 Puff Interview of Adams

NY1 Online: Adams Touts Record For Brooklyn B.P.(NY1)
“My focus is quality of life,” Eric Adams said. “I believe in that concept. So we can’t merely focus on building tall buildings and stadiums without building the people and giving people the resources.” Nevertheless, he added, “What I would like to do with the office is continue what Marty Markowitz has done.”

A Blogger Very Different View of Adams Past

Gatemouth dropped a large amount of opposition research against State Senator Eric Adams, who is campaigning for Brooklyn borough president. Among the items chronicled are  Mr. Adams’ racially-charged, Nation of Islam-backed campaign for Congress, his criticism of Hispanic politician for marrying a non-Hispanic wife, a sojourn into the Republican Party and, more recently, his defense of former  Senator Hiram Monserrate when he was accused of assaulting his girlfriend.
More to Come
City Council Redistricting

We Will Never Know All the Council Redistricting Deals Made By Team Quinn With Party Leaders, Candidates and Ethnic Groups to Gain Support for Her Mayoral Campaign

City Submits Plan for Redistricting(WSJ)The New York City Districting Commission submitted on Tuesday a final plan to the city clerk to redraw the 51 council districts following the 2010 census, three months after withdrawing its first attempt following criticism that it was politically motivated, unfair to minority voters, and, in one case, beneficial to a Brooklyn assemblyman accused of sexually harassing staff members. The U.S. Department of Justice must still review the plan to ensure it adheres with the Voting Rights Act. If approved, the newly drawn districts will be used for the first time in the September municipal primary.


Lobbying blitz: Businesses spent $62 million - a record - to influence NYC government last year

The soccer league spent a total of $1.7 million through five lobbying firms, according to the city clerk’s office. Major League Soccer paid $1.1 million to HR&A Advisors, $307,800 to the Global Strategy Group, $190,804 to Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP, $67,500 to Bolton-St. Johns and $37,500 to Beaudoin & Company.

City Sells 2 Building to Loses Millions

The city in under contract obligations to rent expensive offices in the Rebuilt WTC

Bloomberg Who is the 13th Richest Man In the World the Feds and State for the Homeless - It Just Does Not Sound Right
Homeless Blame Game(WSJ) Bloomberg on Tuesday blamed the state and advocates for the poor for a disturbing rise in people sleeping at New York City homeless shelters. * Bloomberg Blasts Advocacy Group Report About City's Efforts To Help Homeless(NY1) * Bloomberg blamed the state and advocates for the poor for lobbying to end the Advantage program, which subsidized rent for people to move from shelters to permanent housing, and has resulted in a record shelter population, The Wall Street Journal reports:  * NYC Mayor Bloomberg now 13th-richest man in the world(Wash Times) * Homeless population grew 61% since Bloomberg took office: Report(AM NY) * Mayor Bloomberg blamed the state and advocates for the poor for a disturbing rise in people sleeping at New York City homeless shelters, saying Albany killed a rent subsidy that helped pay for permanent homes.

Bloomberg Nanny Spins Continues

Bloomberg has already cracked down on smoking, junk food, trans fats, salt and super-sized drinks. Now he’s warning about the dangers of listening to loud music with ear buds.
Bloomberg's new health crusade: loud earbuds(NYP)Health officials for the Bloomberg administration are planning a $250,000 social media campaign to warn young people about the risk of losing their hearing from listening to music at high levels on personal MP3 players * Mayor Bloomberg Has Lost the Will to Ban Things(NY Mag) * Michael Goodwin praises Bloomberg for a public service campaign tackling the controversial problem of out-of-wedlock teen pregnancies. * The differences between Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Mayor Bloomberg are clearly defined by their respective Instagram accounts.


 Judge Blocks City Hall From Cutting $260M From DOE Budget(WSJ) A Manhattan judge ordered New York City to hold off on making $260 million school cuts until he considers a lawsuit from parents who sued to block the state cuts, while city officials say they disagreed with the ruling
NYC sued over ed funding law(NYDN)* Judge Rules To Temporarily Halt New York City School Budget Cuts(CBS)

On top of 35% cut over last 5 yrs RT : If doesn't restore 66million, 37000 after school slots will be cut

In the Post, Carrie Remis, a member of Cuomo’s Education Reform Commission, and Allen Williams, founding president of the New York Center for Educational Justice, argue that the state needs to get more value from its education spending

In the Daily News, Robert Pondiscio, executive director of the nonprofit civic education organization CitizenshipFirst, touts new education curricula embraced by New York City that focuses on reading comprehension:

MTA Debt

 Debt $oar point for the MTA (NYP) ALBANY — New York’s public authorities — including the MTA — are nearing the $250 billion mark in debt. The staggering benchmark is the result of years of “back-door borrowing” by the quasi-independent authorities, state Comptroller Tom DiNapoli.
F train express unlikely in B'klyn(NYDN)

NYS Government

Assembly Passes $9 Minimum Wage Skelos Calls it A One House Bill
Assembly votes to raise minimum wage to $9 an hour(NYDN) Assembly Democrats passed a bill yesterday that would raise the state’s minimum wage from $7.25 to $9, although its passage was interpreted as a political statement because the bill’s fate rests with the state Senate, the Times-Union writes:
A report issued by state Comptroller Tom DiNapoli showed that New York’s public authorities have amassed $244 billion in debt, including $58 billion in bonds issued on behalf of the state government, the Times-Union writes: * The Assembly passed a one-house bill to raise the minimum wage that was more of a political statement than anything else, since it’s DOA in the Senate. (Senate GOP Leader Dean Skelos called the measure “counterproductive”).* Assembly passes minimum wage hike, but Sen. Dean Skelos worried about hurting young workers(City and State)

Assembly Democrats are expected to pass a two-year moratorium on hydraulic fracturing natural gas drilling today, similar to a bill passed by the Assembly last year, though this bill specifically bans drilling in the Utica and Marcellus shale, the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle reports: * Today, the Assembly Democrats are expected to pass a two-year hydrofracking moratorium – the second time in two years that the chamber has sought to block the controversial drilling practice. The bill specifically would prohibit the state from issuing permits to drill in the Utica and Marcellus. The IDC put forth a proposal yesterday that would ban fracking until three key public health impact studies are complete. A Food & Water Watch organizer and Citizen Action official write: “Democrats across the country are watching to see what Cuomo will do. By rejecting fracking in New York, Cuomo would be seen as an undaunted progressive leader, distinguishing himself from many Democrats who submit to the whims of the oil and gas industry.”Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver and other Democrats say they will pass a fracking moratorium today*  Assembly approves two year ban on hydrofracking(YNN) * The Assembly Fracking Ban Vote(YNN) * “If Albany decided today to move forward with natural gas development, would rigs leave Pennsylvania, Ohio, Texas, North Dakota? Not likely.”

School Tax Relief
Newsday writes that a proposal to bring back the School Tax Relief program is not based in reality because the state cannot afford a rebate program with a $1.35 billion budget gap:

Get Ready For An Even Earlier Early Budget Deal (NYDN) 

Study warns of debt pileup - Times Union

More local government resolutions passed in opposition to the SAFE Act.

Medical Pot
Sheldon Silver: MMA will be legal in New York -- eventually (NYP)

Gambling Saturation

Aqueduct bet pays off (NYP) The Aqueduct gambling parlor is on a roll, and its success appears to be coming at the expense of Pennsylvania and Atlantic City casinos. Net revenues at Aqueduct’s Resorts World NY casino shot up 11 percent for the first two months of 2013 compared with the same period last year.   In contrast, slot-machine revenue plummeted 9 percent at Pennsylvania’s 11 casinos in January and February.  Atlantic City gambling revenue slumped 13 percent in January.

NYC's Noisiest Neighborhood

The East Village is the noisiest neighborhood in New York City(AMNY)

Handicapped Taxes

Taxi And Limousine Commission Head Says City Needs More Wheelchair-Accessible Taxis(NY1) * TLC indicates support for handicap accessible fleet(NYDN)


 Hurricane Sandy prompts changes to planned New York Wheel on Staten Island(SI Advance)
Buyouts and Good-byes on Staten Island(NY Mag)  *Hurricane Sandy's Biggest Victim(Huff post)
grand re-opening of the Broad Channel branch
Neighbors Fear Two Homes Battered By Sandy Will Collapse With Next Storm(DNAINFO)

Brooklyn Navy Yard

Building 77
New Project Brings Anchor To Navy Yard(WSJ) Once the barren symbol of a lost age, the Brooklyn Navy Yard has been at the center of the city's efforts to revive its dying manufacturing sector. Now, the 10-year undertaking has reached a milestone.


Dominican Judge Calls for Menendez to Appear at a Court Hearing(NYT)
CPAC Has Become a Defender of the Status Quo - Craig Shirley, Townhall
America's Gun Culture Needs to Change - Robert Dallek, USA Today
The Human Toll Behind Out-of-Wedlock Births - Michael Goodwin, NY Post
Coburn's Lonely Fight Against Govt Waste - Margaret Carlson, Bloomberg
Hugo Chavez Dead at 58: Good Riddance! - Michael Moynihan, Daily Beast
What Fidel Taught Hugo - Francisco Toro, The New Republic
Thug Chavez Was No Friend to the Poor - Nick Gillespie, Reason
It's "I Told You So" on ObamaCare - Jonah Goldberg, Los Angeles Times
A Smart Way to End Stupidity of Sequestration - Ezra Klein, Bloomberg
Sequester: Not Even a Cut - John Stossel, FOX Business
Larger Spending Cuts Would Help the Economy - Michael Boskin, WSJ
Is Racism Worse in the South? - Chuck Thompson, The New Republic
Jeb Bush is Back & Thinking 2016 - Wallsten & Nakamura, Washington Post
Journalists as Ring Wraiths - Victor Davis Hanson, Hoover Institution
The Professors' Big Stage - Thomas Friedman, New York Times
Humanity Is Not a Plague Upon the Earth - Alex Berezow, USA Today
How Obama Fumbled Afghanistan - Michael Hirsh, National Journal
Paul Ryan gets a call from Obama(Wash Post)
Obama's Have-and-Have-Not Economy - New York Daily News
Mass. Needs an ObamaCare Waiver for Small-Businesses - Boston Globe
More Pension Alarms Sounding - Orange County Register
Obama's dinner dates tonight: 11 Senate Republicans(NYT)
Hugo Chavez Leaves a Legacy of Ruin - Bloomberg
House approves GOP short-term spending bill to avoid government shutdown later this month 267-151. Moves on to Senate.
white house Cutting Where It Counts: The White House Is Now Ending Tours To Save Money
Federal Budget Cuts Will Hit J.F.K. Passengers, Home Security Secretary Warns(NYT)

Stewart Mocks Opposition To Voting Rights Act: Why Not Go Back To ‘Discriminating First, Stopping It Later?’

Rahm *&#!ing furious at Rangel(NYP) Rangel really got under the skin of top Obama adviser Rahm Emmanuel when the ethically challenged lawmaker delivered a tirade before Congress, according to a new account. Two years later, Obama would say he hoped Rangel would “end his career with dignity,” and the House eventually voted to censure the longtime lawmaker.

Washington Afternoon Update
Senator Rand Paul is filibustering John Brennan's nomination to lead the C.I.A.(NYT)
Obama's Plan B: Engage with the GOP
Moving First on Budget, House Passes Funding Bill(NYT)
Holder: Obama Can Order Drone Strike Inside U.S. - Josh Gerstein, Politico
Rand Paul's Mr. Smith Goes to Washington Moment - Ed Morrissey, HotAir
U.S. Economic Malaise and Gadget Lust - George Packer, The New Yorker
Red-Light Cameras: Lucrative But Corrupt - Holman Jenkins, WSJ
Republicans Won a Battle, But Not the War - Jonathan Chait, NY Magazine
Obama Has a Big Problem in Spending Fight - Chris Stirewalt, FOX News
Mitt Romney: Still Clueless About ObamaCare - Philip Klein, DC Examiner
Back on the Trail With Mark Sanford - Jason Zengerle, New York Magazine
Don't Cry for Hugo - John Fund, National Review Online
Chavez Was a Complicated Leader - Howard Friedman, Huffington Post
Liberals, Free Speech and Radical Islam - Dennis Prager, Townhall
WATCH LIVE: Senator Paul Filibusters Over Obama Drone Policy
Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani called it “absurd” and a “joke” for the  White House to shut down tours because of the sequester. 


Law and Order

Update 5:40PM NYPD got him! RT @ NBCNewYork : confirms to that Julio Acevedo is in custody in Pennsylvania
Driver: I ‘was scared’ when I hit car & family died(NYP) * More than fantasy: The ‘Cannibal Cop’ & the Web(NYP) * Police Wait After Pledge to Surrender in Fatal Crash(NYT) * Man Sought In Deadly Brooklyn Hit-And-Run To Surrender(NY1) * Driver Julio Acevedo talks of death crash(NYDN)* Will Suspect In Fatal Brooklyn Hit-And-Run Crash Surren(WCBS)
* Community Calls For Improved Safety Measures At Brooklyn Intersection(NY1)

A Bronx cheer(NYP Ed) The Bronx has got to be the absolute best place in the city to live — if you’re a criminal.Takia Walker must surely be glad she lives there. Walker was nabbed for insurance fraud Sunday. Cops had hoped her arrest would spur her to help them find Julio Acevedo; he’s the guy who drove the BMW in the crash Sunday that took the lives of Nachman and Raizel Glauber and, a day later, their baby son — who was born as his mother was dying. Cops say she registered the car. Yet, within a day, Bronx DA Robert Johnson dropped the case, “deferring” prosecution against Walker and demanding more evidence. Quick as a wink, Walker was on the street. Great for Walker.

New York State has arrested 2,500 crooks using scans of DMV pictures(NYDN) The Cuomo administration revealed on Tuesday that the facial recognition technology has been in use since 2010. So far, it's caught identity thieves and individuals from the terrorism watch list.

Video Shows Cop Apparently Punching Woman in Face(NBC)

Bound, gagged bodies found burning in NYC park when firefighters show up to put out brush fire(NYDN) * 2 bound-and-gagged bodies found after 'cover up' fire set in Queens marsh(NYP) * Two Bodies Found After a Brush Fire in Queens(NYT)

There are simply no words: 'Cannibal cop' won't testify in defense(NYP) * Officer Won’t Testify, Ending Defense Side in Cannibal Case(NYT) * Jurors Hear From Founder of Fetish Site(WSJ) * Defense Argues "Cannibal Cop" Did Not Want To Kill, Eat Women In Real Life(NY1) * 'Cannibal cop' bawls as defense rests, jury prepares for(NYDN)

Monster gets 50 to life for strangling pregnant ex-girlfriend, leaving boy to die in fire(NYP)

Potential jurors in meat-cleaver murder probed on their own mental health(NYP)
Pregnant cop-killer's guard a coker, too(NYP)
Thieves use flat tire scheme to rob Queens drivers(WSJ)
 Police Search For Trio Of Flat Fix Thieves(NY1)
Off-duty cop stops Staten Island bank heist(NYDN)

B'klyn 'pimp' cleared after prosecutors learn alleged victim still turning tricks(NYP)

ex-trafficking vic revealed to be advertised escort(NYDN)

Hazing Arrests Prompt a Debate Over Student Conduct at Bronx Science(NYT) * Bronx Science athletic director, 2 coaches in hazing scandal(NYDN) * Bronx Science Athletic Director, Track Coaches Suspended (WCBS) * Athletic director, coaches suspended in Bronx Science hazing (Fox 5) * Bx Science Athletic Director, Track Coaches Suspended(NBC)