Sunday, May 4, 2014

True News Sunday Update

FBI Investigating Illegal Coordinating Between NYCLASS PAC and the de Blasio Campaign
EXCLUSIVE: FBI investigating donations to NYCLASS from men close to Mayor de Blasio that may have been used toward anti-Christine Quinn campaigners (NYDN) Two men with strong ties to Mayor de Blasio donated cash to the NYCLASS animal rights group leading the crusade to ban carriage horses. The animal rights group then donated identical amounts to anti-Christine Quinn campaigners. The transactions are now under FBI investigation. The mayoral race had not yet come to a boil, but Democrat Christine Quinn was already feeling the heat.A political action committee called New York City Is Not for Sale had spent most of April and May 2013 bashing Quinn in television ads. Her poll numbers were sliding, but the anti-Quinn campaign wanted to rough her up even more. That’s when a curious set of financial transactions quietly took place — transactions that are now being investigated by the FBI. On May 21, lawyer Jay Eisenhofer gave $50,000 to NYCLASS, the animal rights group leading the crusade to ban carriage horses. Ten days later, on May 31, NYCLASS gave an equal amount — $50,000, to the anti-Quinn group. On June 1, NYCLASS received another large donation, this time for $175,000. It came from UNITE HERE! — a labor union headed by John Wilhelm. Two days after that, on June 3, NYCLASS sent the same amount, $175,000, to the anti-Quinn campaign. Both Wilhelm and Eisenhofer have long-standing ties to Bill de Blasio, one of Quinn’s Democratic rivals in the mayoral campaign.

Wilhelm is de Blasio’s cousin — and a prolific fund-raiser for him. Wilhelm raised $6,950 for de Blasio’s 2009 race for public advocate and $80,000 for de Blasio’s successful campaign for mayor. And Eisenhofer is a top de Blasio fund-raiser as well. He and his law firm gave de Blasio’s public advocate campaign $18,000 in 2009. He also raised $82,250 for de Blasio’s mayoral run, making him one of the campaign’s top “intermediaries.”

Under the law, so-called independent committees like New York City Is Not for Sale are not allowed to coordinate or consult with the campaign of any candidate
Hid the Money
'Had UNITE HERE! and Eisenhofer contributed directly to the free-spending anti-Quinn effort, their involvement would have been made public within weeks because of disclosure rules. But because they contributed directly to NYCLASS, Wilhelm and Eisenhofer were able to enjoy anonymity for months. The trigger for disclosure did not take place until NYCLASS began its own campaign spending, an event that occurred on Sept. 7, three days before the Sept. 10 mayoral primary.

FBI investigation of NYCLASS role in Mayors race is important bc their spending played a major role in the campaign. It prevented a runoff

A Tale of Two Media Coverages
NYC's Stepford Wives Silence About Election Tampering . . . 

Media NY Pols We Don't Want to Know
Where the Call for An Investigation By the Media of HorseGate?
Where is the Outrage Over the Possible Attempt to Steal NY Democracy?
 De Blasio says he’s unfamiliar with investigation into NYCLASS(Capital) "I am not," the mayor said when two reporters asked him, on his way into City Hall Friday afternoon, if he is familiar with the cover story of Friday's Daily News, which first reported on the probe. Asked whether anyone in his administration or political campaign has been called, he simply answered.
Horse Carriage Politics * More on the Advance Groups Corruption  CrainsNY on the Advance Groups Double DippingThe Big 8 Lobbyists * Dark Pool Politics 

WFP and Progressives Starts A War for the Control of the State Senate  . . .     
Koppell to Run Against Klein, Winds of A Bigger Battle For Control of the State Senate

The Koppell race means that WFP who took over city hall in 2013 want to take over the NYS Senate in 2014.  The IDC leader Klein who Koppell is challenging is the linchpin in the coalition Cuomo set up including the GOP to help him deliver on time budget for the past 4 years, the grand slam as he calls it.  Does the Koppell challenge mean an all out war between Cuomo and the WFP progressive team? Or is a democratic state senate the deal the deal Cuomo has accepted to make piece with the party to gain their support and run on their ballot line? Stay tuned the next few days will be interesting. Will other challengers to IDC members like Liu against Avella appear? Will Cuomo agree to a democratic senate and weaken his ability to keep NY's taxes down? Will their be an be an all out war between the WFP and Cuomo forcing the governor to revive the Liberal Party line?

 Koppell to announce bid against Senate leader (CrainsNY) Two sources with direct knowledge of Mr. Koppell's plans told Crain's that he is finally ready to make official his plans to challenge the Senate co-leader, Bronx Democrat Jeffrey Klein. The race is set to be a high-profile affair because Mr. Klein's five-member Independent Democratic Conference shares control of the chamber with Senate Republicans. That has raised the ire of liberal activists, including the website the Daily Kos, who charge that the arrangement has bottled up progressive legislation such as campaign finance reform. If Mr. Klein were to be defeated, power in the chamber could swing back to Senate Democrats.* Former state AG Koppell to challenge Klein in Bronx(NYDN)

Daily Kos IDC's Kline Intervention Hint of A WFP Cuomo Deal?
Daily Kos Has Never Gotten Along With WFP Pusing A Fight with Klein's IDC
The progressive Daily Kos website, which has launched online petitions against conservatives and in support of liberal leaders, has started a petition seeking the political demise of state Senate Independent Democratic Conference Leader Jeff Klein, the Times Union reports:  
Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver thinks the Working Families Party should endorse Gov. Andrew Cuomo unless they want to help Republican challenger Rob Astorino. (CapNY) *  The NYC Working Families Party Scam UPDATED - Daily KosDaily Kos Elections Morning Digest: Working Families Party candidate would take a bite out of Cuomo * Progressive Democrats plan to push for reconciliation with the breakaway IDC at the party’s statewide convention on Long Island later this month. (SoP)
More About the IDC GOP Senate Coalition 

Team Left Puts Pressure On Cuomo to Reject the Independence Party
Progressives push Cuomo to reject Independence line(NYO)A group of progressive Democrats plans to circulate a petition at the party's upcoming convention urging Gov. Andrew Cuomo not to run on the Independence Party line this fall. At a meeting of several Democratic clubs in the West Village last night, state committeewoman Rachel Lavine announced the plan, and called the Independence Party “a sham.” Lavine, who chairs the state committee's Progressive Caucus, also said the Independence Party is “everything that’s corrupt and despicable about politics,” and accused it of being primarily focused on “pay-to-play” schemes.
The progressive call echoes a similar request from Nassau County's Democratic chairman, Jay Jacobs, who Shelly 2 Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver called on the Working Families Party to endorse Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s re-election bid, saying, “I don’t think there’s an alternative,” Capital New York reports: * The Working Families Party is reportedly putting “enormous” pressure on Cuomo to reject the state Independence Party’s endorsement.

Cop Arrested for Hate Crime  . . .     
Former Cop Arrested Hate Graffiti Boro Park

A former NYPD officer has been arrested for allegedly spray painting anti-semitic graffiti in Brooklyn(WNBC) UPDATED: person in custody has been identified as Michael Setiawan, 36, a former NYPD officer from the 69th precinct * Former NYPD cop questioned over anti-Semitic graffiti(NYP)Former NYPD Officer Questioned in Possible Brooklyn Hate Crime(NY1) * Ex-NYPD Officer Reportedly Questioned Over Anti-Semitic Graffiti Spree(NY Mag)
UPDATE: Former NYPD cop Michael Setiawan charged with spray-painting anti-Semitic graffiti in Borough Park, Brooklyn.(WCBS)
BREAKING: Former Cop Arrested In Boro Park Hate Graffiti Spree In Custody
Just heard from NYPD 66th Pct CO Inspector Deddo that they have the anti-Semitic graffiti suspect in custody this morning.
Former NYPD officer in custody over last night's hate crimes in Boro Park
Hate grafitti spray painted onto Brooklyn wall(NYP)
Swastikas and anti-Semitic graffiti spray-painted in multiple Brooklyn locations(WPIX)
Five people slashed by madman outside Bronx methadone clinic(NYP) * BORO PARK: U/D - A Child who saw the plate number informed his father & then called Shomrim, Cop was picked up early this morning in Queens.

Shocked at reports perp in anti-Semitic graffiti spree is former NYPD. Grateful that despite this, NYPD did everything to find & arrest him!

Education and the UFT Contract . . .     
Its Not About Countering Charters, Its was the Mission of Charter Schools to Pressure Public Schools to Change 

Bloomberg Won the Education War 
While the the UFT's Mulgrew was busy hugging DOE's Fariña for agreeing to a contract that the city fathers before the 1977 financial bankruptcy would be proud of. What was missed by media who covered the spin doctors love fest at city hall was that the biggest winner of this contract was Mayor Bloomberg for the inclusion of the Innovation’ Schools Plan included in the contract agreement. Bloomberg took a lot of heat on education, some of it deservedly so, some of it as a change agent on attacking the education bureaucracy with a lot of people feeding off of keeping the education gravy train the way it is. Bloomberg along with his Schools Chancellor Dennis Walcott fought Albany for control and won and pitch a school building by school building battle to create charter school to show examples of a better way to educate our school children.

Change Agent Role of Charters Forgotten By All

At city hall they celebrated the victor of Innovation School Plan not the change agent that made that deal possible. The reporters who covered the story have no understanding that charter schools were not created to take over the public schools system, but were created to put pressure on the public schools to change.  Even the well paid flack for the charters Stu Loeser did not understand the change role of the schools he represents.  

NYT Was Happy There Was No Snarling and Gave Bloomberg and Charters No Credit For the  Innovation’ Schools Plan
 A Teachers’ Contract for New York(NYT Ed) Though imperfect, the agreement is a good deal for the city and its students. NYT Said the raises were reasonable, but several missed opportunities and unanswered questions. NYT says instead of finding over a billion in health saving in the city's system a far better approach would have required union members to pay at least modestly more for health care premiums, on par with what workers pay under comparable public and private sector employers. Previous mayors have barely been able to touch benefits that were once considered sacrosanct, and Mr. de Blasio’s good will now gives him a chance to achieve significant savings, improvements in services and labor peace. * NYP Not Happy New York City can’t afford the teachers contract(NYP ED) * BIG SAVINGS AT BIG COST: Mayor de Blasio and teachers union plan achieving $3.4 billion in health care savings relies on tapping billion-dollar-reserve fund(NYDN)

Media Spin Doctors Often Control What the Public Reads in the News and Understands
Gadfly George Spitz created the Five Borough NYC Marathon, now the most successful sports event in the city and gets no credit for his invention. The credit is often given to the Rudin family which funds the even Yesterday the media led by the mayor's spin doctors gave the man who was not in the battle, but marched into town to declare victory for creating the Innovated Schools Plan. In Las Vegas there is not even a single plaque naming the man who invented the town mobster Bugsy Siegel. The Mayor of the City of New York should be big enough to name the Tweed Court House the Bloomberg Building. The building naming ceremony could be a good chance for them to catch up and compare notes.  De Blasio Counters Charters With His Own ‘Innovation’ Schools(NYO) New York City’s new teacher’s union contract includes a plan to create up to 200 “innovation” schools that can bypass usual Department of Education rules, similar to charter schools. Teachers Question Pay-for-Performance Element in Proposed Contract (NYT) Some say a new agreement that would pay extra to New York teachers who take on more work is too good to be true, while others welcome the raises.* I think we got a fair deal, but the devil is in the details:' Teachers cautiously optimistic on new city contract(NYDN) * Mulgrew: Education contract is a good deal, especially for kids(NYDN) * Teachers' unions are planning an onslaught of online advertising to protest the pro-charter conference (Capital)
Fieldston and University Heights are in the same borough but worlds apart. How much understanding between their students can a well-told story bring? (NYT) Rich City, Poor City: How it feels to have and have not in NYC 
Easy to Open New Charters  New state law changes makes opening charter schools in New York City easier than any other in nation (NYDN) * Schools Chancellor, City's First Lady Participate in Citywide Parent Conference(NY1) * Unions plan pop-up ads for pro-charter conference(Capital)

de Blasio Wins Single Buyer Health Care Saving From the Unions
Still Work Ahead for Other Contract Agreements
Labor leaders back de Blasio health-care overhaul(NYP)The Municipal Labor Council’s steering committee approved the measure, 20 to 2, with only the heads of the detectives and firefighters unions dissenting. The health-care changes — which include centralizing purchases of prescription drugs and medical tests — is expected to save the city $1.3 billion in the new city contract with the teachers union. But opponents say they were rushed into the deal. *Labor Union Council Approves de Blasio's Health Care Savings Deal (DNAINFO) * Labor Leaders Say Mayor Still Has Work Ahead With Settling Contracts(NY1) *NYPD Union Blasts de Blasio Offer of No Retroactive Raises Despite UFT Deal(DNAINFO)Patrolmen's Benevolent Association president Pat Lynch blasted the city's offer of no raises.* Two no votes for de Blasio’s health care deal(Capital) * De Blasio gives away the store in teachers contract(Goodwin, NYP) You don’t have to be a cynic to worry that the bonhomie between the union and the union-backed mayor was sealed with hugs, as de Blasio and Fariña each shared an embrace with Michael Mulgrew, boss of the United Federation of Teachers. But while raises are certain, concessions are elusive. More than $1 billion in savings to the city are claimed through vague changes to health-care programs, but teachers won’t pay anything more toward their premiums, a foolish giveaway on de Blasio’s part that will hobble the budget forever. hat gets to the big problem. Nothing in the contract, and nothing the mayor and Fariña say about it, gives any reason to hope that student performance will improve. That’s no incidental omission. At the same time, they say schools are in a state of “crisis” because so few of the 65 percent of students who get a diploma are prepared for college or a career. To take them at their rhetoric, they are committed to solving that crisis.This contract does not keep faith with that commitment. It doesn’t even try.* Michelle Rhee says the reforms in the deal struck by de Blasio with the UFT aren’t all they’re cracked up to be.
More Details of the Teacher Union Agreement

Principal probed over sex in school during class hours(NYP)

The possibly catastrophic new contract with NYC’s teachers(NYP)The principals ducked on the particulars Thursday, including how much the pact will truly cost, how those costs are to be covered and whether some highly imprecise claims concerning classroom practices, teacher productivity and workforce discipline have any real-world relevance. Indeed, de Blasio essentially asked New York to assume his good faith and to accept the $4 billion deal (or could it be $5.5 billion?) on its face, no questions asked. Terming the deal a “landmark agreement” achieved on an “historic day” (does anybody see a trend here?), the mayor explained that it won’t work without more than a $1 billion in health-insurance savings — but, even so, that it would require no appreciable reductions in health-care services for UFT members. Not to belabor the point, but this also makes no practical sense, either. It simply doesn’t work on its face — especially given that first-quarter health-care spending nationally is up an astounding 9.9% from a year ago, mostly driven by demand-pull inflation.* Sunday Update Kids will run show at parent-teacher conferences: Farina(NYP) * Chirlane McCray praises teachers contract(NYDN)

Child Abuse Death   . . .  
Another Child Dies While Under ACS Care 

What we owe Juan(NYDN Ed) Another child dead who was under the city’s watch. Four-year-old Juan Sanchez is the latest child to die right under the nose of the Administration for Children’s Services. He must be the last. The sordid details are painful even to recount. The little boy died on April 28, apparently after swallowing rat poison while playing unsupervised in a stairwell in his building.As seen by police after his death, Juan’s family apartment was squalid even for a rat. Empty drug bags were strewn across the floor. There was no food in the kitchen save for a box of pancake mix and a few packets of ketchup. Tempting as it is to solely blame Juan’s prime caregiver, who seems to hold primary accountability for neglect, the city’s neglect appears equally infuriating.His mother, Migdalia Morales, had been investigated by ACS a whopping 11 times since 2003 — and six since Juan was born in 2009.

Independent News' Future   . . .   
True News Battles News by Spin
In a Daily News op-ed, 3 former Moreland Commission members keep up the fight for campaign finance reform Moreland is gone; its cause lives on
Tell those Moreland commissioners to talk to the AG about the Rapfogel matching fund scandal or Advance mixing PACs and CFB $$

Top Topics In Depth In the News
1. Sandy  HUD May Make NYC Compete for Sandy Aid 
2. Gambling  A proposed casino development is in Tuxedo — only 41 miles away from NYC
3. Gov Race  Republican Rob Astorino rips Gov. Cuomo over attack ads
4. Affordable-Housing   Unions offer pay cuts for jobs in affordable-housing plan
5. NYPD Supreme Court Hears Cases Involving Police Searches of Cellphones During Arrests(NY1)
6. NYC Poverty  NYC poverty rate hit 21.4% in 2012: study(NYDN)
7. NYFD Discrimination Payouts start flowing in FDNY discrimination suit

Trending Topics in the News and In Depth
 Charter Schools  City parents jump to get kids in charter schools(NYDN)
 How NYC is Losing Its Middle Class Law meant to lower NY auto insurance made it surge: study

The New Journalism Supported by Lobbyists
From Capital NY Morning Email Today Sponsored by 21st Century Consumers A Lobby Group Pushing Online Wine Shoping in NY
**A message from 21st Century Consumers: 70% of consumers prefer to shop online. Wine shouldn’t be an exception. That’s why 21st Century Consumers, urges the State Liquor Authority to approve pending applications for online wine sales. Visit and tell the state that you support online wine sales. **
Online alcohol sales fueling underage drinking - Chicago Tribune * Underage Drinkers Buy Alcohol Online With Few Barriers ...(Bloomberg News) * Buying alcohol online? It's not hard for underage drinkers ...(LA Times)


Gambling Lobbyists Hit Jackpot  . . .    
NYT Names Gambling Lobbyist Connected to Cuomo . . . What About the Lobbyists Connect to Silver and others?
Silver's Genting's Lobbyists Genting’s lobbyists in New York, according to state lobbying records, include Patricia Lynch, a former top aide to the Democratic Assembly speaker, Sheldon Silver, and Nicholas A. Spano, a former Republican state senator and ex-state Senate staffer John Cordo and racing maven Brian Meara. The company has also hired Knickerbocker SKD Jennifer Cunningham, a close friend of Mr. Cuomo’s, to do public relations work and Bradley Tusk, who was Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg’s campaign manager in 2009, to assist with planning. Genting even created an advocacy group called the New York Gaming Association, which is led by another prominent lobbyist, James Featherstonhaugh. Delaware North, which runs two tracks and racinos in the upstate Finger Lakes region, paid $360,000 to three lobbying firms, including Lynch’s and Meara’s. The horse-racing industry also has its stable of lobbyists. The New York Thoroughbred Horsemen’s Association pays Featherstonhaugh $108,000 to represent its interests.* The 22 entities vying to build casinos in New York appear to have one thing in common: a willingness to use whatever political, financial and public-relations muscle they can to win a casino license in a process that is moving at a speedy pace.

The politically-connected gravy train flow$$$$$$: Bidders Lining Up Lobbyists in Fight for New York Casinos 

NYT Lobbyists Connected to Cuomo
Bidders Lining Up Lobbyists in Fight for New York Casinos(NYT) A casino license, particularly within a leisurely drive of New York City, could be a golden ticket to billions in profits in one of the last underdeveloped gambling markets in the nation. In the first two months of this year, the 22 bidders and the New York Gaming Association, a trade group for the nine racetracks that already have video lottery terminals, spent a total of about $400,000 on hiring prominent lobbyists, according to an analysis by the New York Public Interest Research Group. That spending came on top of $6 million in lobbying by the same interests in 2012 and 2013, leading up to the statewide referendum last November that authorized up to seven new casinos. 

Team Cuomo Knows How to Do Pay to Play Gambling Legally, Not the AEG Gang
Mr. Cuomo, a Democrat who is seeking a second term this fall, received $55,000 in donations from bidders or entities controlled by bidders, according to the analysis. Rob Astorino, his likely Republican opponent, received $43,500 toward his re-election last year as Westchester County executive.  Patrick E. Brown, who worked in the administration of Mr. Cuomo’s father, Gov. Mario M. Cuomo, is representing the Wilmorite, a developer that wants to build a casino near Syracuse, and another entity working on a project in the Catskills. 

At the Time of the Smith Trial in June Expect Movement in the AEG Gambling Investigation
Others representing clients in the hunt include another longtime Cuomo family retainer, Tonio Burgos; the firm founded by Dan Klores, a close friend of the governor’s; and the firm headed by former Senator Alfonse M. D’Amato, a Republican who has become a major fund-raiser for Mr. Cuomo. Nowhere is the competition more intense than in the Catskills and the Hudson Valley, the area closest to New York City, where 11 bidders include the casino giant Caesars Entertainment and Genting Group, a Malaysian company with a popular video lottery outpost at the Aqueduct racetrack, in Queens.Still, like its rivals, Greenetrack is gearing up fast: Its representatives include Park Strategies, Mr. D’Amato’s lobbying firm, and Charlie King, a former executive director of the State Democratic Party and a longtime friend of Mr. Cuomo’s. Flashback Behind an Army of Lobbyists, an Instant Force in Gambling(NYT)GamblingIndustry Bets Big on NYS, Has Spent $50M on Lobbying and Campaign ContributionsSince 2005 (Common Cause)  * Lobby dollars and a dream - Times UnionOneida Indian Nation spent the most in NY on gambling ...Lobbyists cash in on racinos' big bet | New York Post * Interests Spent Big for NY Casino Lobbying | * Is Cuomo's Gambling Plan a Win for Lobbyists? - New York Mag * NY Times: Casino Referendum Hot Target for Lobbyists(NYT)
Gambling Industry Bets Big on NYS, Has Spent $50M on Lobbying and Campaign Contributions Since 2005   - See more at:
 More About Gambling and Lobbyists
More on the AEG Gambling Investigation

Richard Ravitch  . . .    
The Education of a Public Man(NYT)
Richard Ravitch’s “So Much to Do: A Full Life of Business, Politics and Confronting Fiscal Crises” synthesizes a memoir, a citizen’s manual into making government work and an “ode to democracy.”

Jail Shake Up By New Commish . . . 
Two city jail officials out as commish shakes things up(NYP)

Subway Accident   . . .  
Cut Backs In Rail Fixes Caused Derailment
Update Rail that caused NYC subway derailment was brand new(NYP) * MTA Releases Info on Rail Section Involved in Queens Derailment(NY1)

'THIS CANNOT BE TOLERATED': Track in F train derailment was in 'critical rail break' zone and slated to be replaced in 2015(NYDN)



Closing Moreland Updates   . . .     

Defunct Anti-Corruption Commission Member says There is Plenty of Criminal Dirt to Dig Up
Ex-ethics commission member says there are cases of potential government corruption that need review(NYDN) Makau Mutua, a former member of Gov. Cuomo's defunct anti-corruption commission, said the commission found potential criminality on the part of 10 to 12 lawmakers. This comes as a federal probe into state government corruption heats up. There’s more than a few cases that required further scrutiny,” said Mutua, the law school dean at SUNY Buffalo. He didn’t offer specifics, but said “they’re the kind of things for which folks have been indicted or convicted before.” He cited “ethical lapses” involving the outside income of lawmakers and the possible misuse of campaign money.* "Why does this act of trivilization by Cuomo so engage me? Because Sherman Moreland is my grandfather .."

What Happen to Moreland  “Dossiers On Persons of Interest"?
Read The Cuomo Administration’s Contract With K2 Intelligence(YNN) Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s office last year entered into a contract with K2 Intelligence in order to provide detailed data analytic services for the Moreland Commission on Public Corruption which includes a requirement for the creation of “dossiers on persons of interest.” The $175,000 contract, which ran through December, lays out the requirements for the company to help the anti-corruption panel find “pertinent links and patterns” in a huge swath of data.
The contract shows K2 was charged with helping to “develop and execute a strategy for acquiring data” from the Joint Commission on Public Ethics including financial disclosure and lobbying records, Senate and Assembly legislation, campaign finance records and data made available on the Project Sunlight website.
The company’s contract stipulates the information would be used to help “create dossiers on persons of interest” along with organizations and companies as well. K2 was also required to create visual data maps and help analyze events over time. The agreement was obtained by Capital Tonight from the state comptroller’s office through a Freedom of Information Law request.

Bharara: Media Need to Investigate Corruption

"Rather than just covering the cases that my office and other offices are already bringing, figure out ways to break new ground and to cover new stories" Bharara

When it comes to investigative journalism reporters and newspapers become "Vinny the Chin" ignoring the issues while pretending not to know what is going on. Today's reporters operating in very weak media economy and with lack of experience or historical understand think good journalism is reporting first what the mayor or any pol said, now what is really going on. * U.S. Lost 30% of its Paid Journalists in 6 Years
More on US Attorney Preet Bharara
More on the Moreland Investigation Updates or Media Cover-Up

FOIL Bishop Email?  . . .    
FOIL: NYPD Bishop Emails Documents Exempt or They Do Not Exist?

Gothamist appealed the Bill de Blasio administration’s non-response to their FOIL request for documents associated with the Bishop Orlando Findlayter controversy. The publication found that the administration is now arguing those documents are exempt: “Their claim: none of the records exist, except that they do, but we can’t have them. Confused? So are we.” Mr. Findlayter appeared in court yesterday to argue that he was arrested in error back in February, the Wall Street Journal reports: “On Thursday, defense attorney Mark Pollard rejected an offer from Brooklyn prosecutors that the bishop pay a $75 fine to resolve that case. Mr. Pollard outside court said he would … present evidence that his client’s license was suspended in error.”*What We Have Here is A Failure to Communicate Bishop sprung after de Blasio call: It was all a misunderstanding(NYP)

Lobbyists Puppet Council Speaker  . . .     
Top Speaker Lobbyists Puts A Man Inside
Council speaker puts connected lobbyist on payroll(CrainsNY) Melissa Mark-Viverito quietly handed a $130,000-a-year staff position to a lobbyist from the firm that helped propel her to the City Council speakership, payroll records show. In late March, Carlos Beato, who was a lobbyist at the firm Pitta Bishop Del Giorno & Giblin, joined the City Council payroll as a deputy general counsel. The move came not long after the lobbying shop—which has long served as Ms. Mark-Viverito’s campaign compliance consultant—quarterbacked her council speaker bid. The firm’s Jon Del Giorno set up an “appointments committee” for Ms. Mark-Viverito to vet applicants for the council staff. The firm lobbied Ms. Mark-Viverito as her speaker bid was ongoing, and has continued to do so since her ascension to the city's second-most powerful post. The close ties have drawn scrutiny and a call from the Daily News for Ms. Mark-Viverito to sever ties with the firm and its clients. In an unprecedented and clever move, the Pitta Bishop set up a 2017 campaign account to facilitate Ms. Mark-Viverito’s speaker run. That allowed her to raise $100,000, with more than $20,000 coming from the lobbying firm’s clients. The good-government group Common Cause accused Ms. Mark-Viverito of exploiting loopholes in state election law. Pitta Bishop's clients also reportedly funded much of her $27,000 inauguration party.

Cuomo 2014 Re-Election   . . .  
NYT Giving Astorino the Christie Treatment
Fair-Housing Collision in Westchester(NYT Ed) The county executive has dragged his feet in complying with a court order to end deeply embedded segregation patterns. The New York Times writes that it’s likely that some local communities and legislators in Westchester County are eager to undo the damage caused by County Executive Rob Astorino’s defiance of an agreement with HUD, and there is no time like now to prove it In his State of the County address, Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino proposed setting up a community development grant program to replace money being withheld by HUD over the county’s compliance with a fair housing settlement, which state Democrats are targeting with two attack ads, the Journal News writes: * New York Times: It’s true that not everyone in Westchester shares the vehemence of the county executive. It’s also quite likely that some local communities and legislators are eager to find a solution to uphold the rule of law, preserve vital government financing and undo the damage done by Mr. Astorino’s defiance. If so, there is no time like now to prove it.

 Expanding Citi Bikes   . . .

Alta Bicycle Share, which runs Citi Bike, and an affiliate of a major real-estate developer are in advanced talks about an investment that would fuel expansion of the bike-sharing program, The Wall Street Journal reports * Alta Bicycle Share Inc. of Portland, Ore., which runs Citi Bike, has been negotiating a deal with REQX Ventures, an investment firm formed by the upscale fitness center chain Equinox and its parent, Related Cos. … Both parties have signed a term sheet outlining a deal to inject capital to help bring the Citi Bike program to more neighborhoods in New York City.”
More on Citi Bikes


Pushing Out New Yorkers  . . .
Escape From New York

Push Out
High costs of living seems to have replaced crime for people leaving
A new Gallup Poll found that 41 percent of New Yorkers would move out if given the chance, which was actually a three-way tie with New Jersey and Massachusetts for sixth-worst. Illinois and Connecticut led the way. (TU) One of the Reasons for the Escape High taxes make NYers wait longer to earn financial ‘freedom’Congratulations, New Yorkers: You can now keep your own money for the rest of the year.
A study by the Tax Foundation, an independent tax-policy research group, shows that this Sunday is Tax Freedom Day — the day state residents make enough to pay off their total taxes for the year.Because of the Empire State’s high tax burden, the report found New Yorkers are behind only New Jersey and Connecticut in the time it takes to earn its financial “freedom” — or enough money to collectively cover all local, state and federal taxes.
More on How NYC is Losing the Middle Class
More on Gentrification

Fake Council Reform  . . . 

True News Called the Council's Member Items Reforms Bull Shit Before the Daily News

TN Wags the DN
Today's Daily News -  Reform the reform (NYDN Ed) It took a new mindset and a new regime at the City Council to produce a series of badly needed reforms. Credit goes to Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito and Rules Committee Chair Brad Lander for delivering a package worthy of passage. . .  Putting unilateral power to disburse public money in the hands of elected officials eager to spread magic dust and win the gratitude of their constituents (and reelection) invites corruption. Ex-members Larry Seabrook, Miguel Martinez and Hiram Monserrate are all behind bars for stealing member items. Dan Halloran’s trial starts next month.
Which explains why a former councilman named Bill de Blasio, who smelled the stench of the slush up close, wants all $400 million in yearly member items banned. That, of course, is a no-go with the Council, which would rather get a round of applause for reform while continuing to tap a huge kitty of cash. Besides wrongly wanting to keep the slush funds, Mark-Viverito also punted on the extra cash payments, called lulus, that she hands out to members for running committees and holding leadership posts. Though a majority supports a ban, the speaker went only so far as to recommend that an advisory commission due to be appointed next year take up the matter. That’s a dodge. Ban lulus. Ban member items. Go the distance on reform.

Yesterday's True News
Changing How Funds Are Distributed Does Not Fix Corruption of Member Items System

Lipstick on So Called Progressive Pigs Power Grab
All of the corruption connected to member items has come from who the council members have distributed the funds to, not how many dollars in funds the speaker gave members. It is a power grab by member disguised as reform.  Councilman Larry Seabrook was convicted of orchestrating a broad corruption scheme to funnel hundreds of thousands of dollars in city money to his relatives, friends and a girlfriend through a network of nonprofit organizations that he controlled. Councilman Miguel Martinez was convicted of misappropriating $55,000 meant for two nonprofit groups in his district, the Washington Heights Art Center and the Upper Manhattan Council Assisting Neighbors.

 The so called reforms that the PR staff of the council is banging the drums about will do nothing to stop councilmember who give money to none profits who function as political machines for the member.  Councilwoman Julissa Ferreras because she represents a poor district will get more funds from a system she once managed corruptly. Ferreras was director of a none profit which send former Councilman Hiram Monserrate to jail after he was convicted of using LIBRE member items funds on a petition drive to get Monserrate on the ballot, to register voters on his behalf and to pay employees to work on Monserrate's campaign. Does of other council members have gotten away with member item corruption like Ferreras.  Here are a couple dozen council members who got away with member item corruption.  Mayor de Blasio, a former council member himself, has recently called for abolishing the member items.  The legislation would need approval by de Blasio, unless the so called progressive council has enough votes to override a potential veto to complete their power grab from the speaker New York City Council Backs Altering How Discretionary Money Is Doled Out and Bills Are Written(NYT) If the changes are adopted, the speaker would be stripped of the authority to decide how much each council member is given to pay out to local groups and projects.* ‘Long overdue’: Mark-Viverito introduces new rules(Capital) New proposals would act as a check on the powers of the speaker *Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito to Introduce Power-Sharing Reforms(DNAINFO) The proposals, first suggested last year, would share more power with the City Council membership.
City Council 2014, Progressives
 City Council Member Items Slush Fund

 LICH Deal All Politics Now  . . .     

LICH Plan B: Less of A Full Scale Hospital 
Was BHP Designed to Fail?  So Real Estate Can Get the Land

Saturday First, do no harm(NYDN Ed) Long Island College Hospital plans are falling apart
Friday LICH could temporarily close as part of settlement(Capital)A provision of a settlement reached by SUNY, labor unions and community groups, appears to allow state officials to close Long Island College Hospital if a deal to sell it cannot be reached within 90 days.  The settlement, due to be released in court this afternoon, allows SUNY to "exit operations ... without interference" in May, according to a statement from Governor Andrew Cuomo.

amNewYork writes that Mayor Bill de Blasio is right to ask SUNY to choose a different bidder for Long Island College hospital because what that section of Brooklyn needs is a smartly downsized LICH:* SUNY letter outlines problems with B.H.P. bid(Capital) SUNY says it is unclear who will run the hospital * LICH bidder Peebles wants to buy Clippers too  via * Would-be developer of LICH sues SUNY, via * Winning LICH bidder sues SUNY(Capital) *SUNY letter outlines problems with B.H.P. bid(Capital)

Wednesday Update
De Blasio, state officials and two healthcare unions all but acknowledged that Brooklyn Health Partners has little ability to follow through on its pledge to maintain a hospital at the Long Island College Hospital site in Brooklyn, the Daily News writes:  * The Daily News writes that the planned buyout of Long Island College Hospital by Brooklyn Health Partners turns out to be every bit as shaky as it appeared: * Saving LICH is a ‘fantasyland’: state source(NYDN) * Brooklyn Health Partners: Despite mayor's concerns, LICH rescue plan will succeed (NYDN) * \Saving LICH is a ‘fantasyland’: state source(NYDN) * De Blasio: ‘Real concerns’ about winning LICH bid(Capital) * Latest Plan to Save LICH Reportedly in Jeopardy(NY1) * A deal flatlines (NYDN Ed) Unsurprisingly, the unrealistic rescue plan for Long Island College Hospital is unraveling
More About Closing Hospitals, LICH

Real Estate Company: Too Big to Fail  . . .    
For the Big and Connected Defrauding Clients Out of Millions is Not Stealing From Them
How Does A Construction Company Guilty of Stealing $55 Million Escape Being Tried for A Crime Ask the Manhattan DA and the Biggest Flack in New York
This New York Times correction during the midnight hours says it all about the DA and Flacks who allow those who corrupt in this town to know they will only be slapped on the wrist if caught rend handed "The article described incorrectly what Structure Tone admitted to in a corruption case. "The company acknowledged it had defrauded clients out of tens of millions of dollars; it did not say it had stolen from them." The DA who allow Structure Tone to get off without jail is Cyrus R. Vance, the flack who changed the wording in the NYT and may have had a hand in the kid glove treatment is Suri Kasirer who runs the giant Kasirer Consulting LLC lobbying firm. Building Firm Pleads Guilty to Defrauding Its Customers(NYT) Structure Tone, one of the nation’s largest construction firms, pleaded guilty to corruption charges and agreed to forfeit $55 million.  The company arranged for electrical, plumbing, drywall and other subcontractors to falsely inflate their bills for Structure Tone’s clients, investigators say, adding millions of dollars to the cost of building office space for Bank of America; Moody’s; Bloomberg; Proskauer Rose, a law firm; and other major customers between 2005 and 2009.  The plea is part of the latest scandal to erupt in the largely hidden but vastly lucrative business of designing and building the walls and guts of corporate towers in New York City, an industry in which corruption often adds to the already high cost for developers, law enforcement officials say. The continuing investigation by the Manhattan district attorney’s office has resulted in guilty pleas or convictions against six other companies and at least half a dozen executives.

No Jobs NYC  . . .     
Unemployment Up in NYC to 7.9%
NYC Elected Officials Have Done Nothing to Reduce the City's High Unemployment Rate 
You Wonder Why the NYC's Poverty Rate is Rising

THE 99% -- “Poverty Rate Continues to Climb Among NYC's Working Adults, Study Finds,” by DNAinfo’s Colby Hamilton: “The number of full-time working adults living in poverty in NYC has continued to rise in the past five years, even as the economy improved, according to a report released Wednesday by Mayor Bill de Blasio’s office. The poverty rate for full-time working adults in the city rose 1.8 percent between 2008 and 2012, the most recent year for which statistics were available, according to the report, issued annually for the mayor’s office by the New York City Center for Economic Opportunity (CEO). …Nearly 30 percent of Asians …were…living in poverty in 2012…Hispanics…[at] 25.7 percent, followed by blacks at 22.5 percent, while whites…had the lowest poverty rate at 14 percent”.
More on the Unemployed
NYC's Elected Officials Have Not Created Jobs

Airbnb and Thier Lobbyists  . . .    

NYT/NYP Flacks for Airbnb Because Everyone Who Works Their Can Afford NY's High Rents

Airbnb Host Welcomes Travelers From All Over(NYT) A Queens resident with a spare bedroom has rented it out over the past 10 months to scores of guests, taking in almost $18,000. * How Airbnb saved my home (NYP) A lifelong New Yorker and resident of Fort Greene for 15 years, I care deeply about our city. About three years ago, I became an Airbnb host, renting our garden apartment for short-term stays. It has allowed us to keep our own housing “affordable,” and helped us share the magic of our neighborhood with guests who might never leave Manhattan (or never make it to the city) if their only choice was a hotel.

Today's NYT Recognizes A Supply Problem
Did True News Wag the NYT Again
The Dark Side of the Sharing Economy(NYT Ed)Websites like Airbnb that offer short-term rentals are making housing less affordable in big cities by restricting supply.

Tenants Push to the Street and Out of Town
Out of Sight 
Out of Mind
Very excited RT : EXCLUSIVE: spokesman joins , reptsIDC spokesman Soufer joins Risa Heller(Capital) Soufer, 29, will join Risa Heller Communications, which draws its name from the former spokeswoman for Chuck Schumer and David Paterson. He starts next week, and will assist the firm's work on behalf of Airbnb and the New York City F.C., a budding Major League Soccer franchise in the five boroughs.Affordable Housing Vanishing NYC affordable housing is vanishing as rents skyrocket, incomes decline: report (NYDN)
* Stuck by Rising Rent As rents rise, some stuck in affordable homes with moving too costly(NYP) * City’s rising rents are top in US as income lags(NYP) * New York City Housing Push Should Aim at Poorest, Report Says(NYT) * In light of a study commissioned by New York City Comptroller Scott Stringer’s office, which shows that the city’s median rent rose 75 percent from 2000 to 2012, Stringer is calling on de Blasio to prioritize affordable housing for low-income residents, the New York Observer writes:  * Landlord accused of trashing apartments to boot tenants hit with subpoena(NYDN) * De Blasio gets push to add cheaper apartments(NYDN) * Gov. Cuomo Announces Probe Of Jewish Landlord Joel Israel(WCBS)
More About Airbnb
More on Gentrification
How NYC is Losing the Middle Class

More Rev. Sharpton's Secrets  . . .   

Will Sharpton Nation Survive?
Donald Sterling blowup’s surprise: Al Sharpton’s diminished influence(Salon) The Rev is a timeless adapter, able to exploit every news moment to maximum effect. It didn't happen this time. Sharpton’s name appeared at the top of the Los Angeles NAACP dinner invitation, right above Sterling’s (before it was deleted), and Sharpton is still scheduled to receive his “Person of the Year” honors, amid awards to such civil rights giants as top Wal-Mart executives. Leon Jenkins, the head of the NAACP chapter in Los Angeles that picked Sterling, recently co-authored an Op-Ed on state budget cuts with the president of Sharpton’s local National Action Network. Maybe the Rev and the NAACP need to have a meeting of their own “to make sure” that the sale of civil rights honors “never happens again.” The Sharpton camera-grab on Sterling didn’t attract much support, an unfortunate surprise for the TV host, as insinuating himself into an overnight win-win situation could have counterbalanced one of his worst stretches in the media since his latest reinvention.* NO GOOD SAMARITAN: City & State columnist Alexis Grenell explores New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio’s “special treatment” for Rev. Al Sharpton despite the civil rights activist's shady past.
The Secret World of Rev. Sharpton

The WFP Nexus  . . .   
2009 WFP . . . Data and Field . . .  Wolfe . . .  
Connecting to 2013 Spending Limits

Investigator wants to speak with Mayor de Blasio aide Emma Wolfe in Working Families Party probe(NYDN) Roger Bennett Adler sent a letter in September to Emma Wolfe, de Blasio’s director of intergovernmental affairs, asking for a sitdown, according to sources. The investigation is examining whether the party’s now-dismantled for-profit arm, Data & Field Services, gave cut-rate prices to Working Families candidates, giving them an unfair advantage in elections. The investigation is examining whether the party’s now-dismantled for-profit arm, Data & Field Services, gave cut-rate prices to Working Families candidates, giving them an unfair advantage in elections.

Prosecutor investigating Working Families Party sought interview with de Blasio aide Emma Wolfe
A special prosecutor investigating the Working Families Party’s relationship with get-out-the-vote corporation Data & Field Services wants to interview Emma Wolfe, an aide to Mayor Bill de Blasio, The Wall Street Journal reports:  Since 2012, the prosecutor, Roger Bennett Adler, has been investigating the Working Families Party's relationship with Data & Field Services, a corporation formed by the left-leaning party to provide its candidates with get-out-the-vote staffing and expertise. Investigators are looking at whether the for-profit firm charged significantly lower fees than is typical for such service, potentially providing an unfair advantage to favored candidates. 

WFP Lawyering Up To Stop An Investigation
According to people familiar with the matter, Mr. Adler last fall sought an interview with Ms. Wolfe, who was then deputy manager and political director of Mr. de Blasio's mayoral campaign and is now his director of intergovernmental affairs. There were discussions with an attorney representing Ms. Wolfe to arrange the interview, but the interview has yet to take place, these people said. Ms. Wolfe was a key player in Mr. de Blasio's 2009 campaign for public advocate and served as his chief of staff when he was in that position. She previously worked as an organizing and field director for the Working Families Party. The party has said its support for candidates in 2009 was legal and is seeking to have Mr. Adler removed from the investigation, arguing in court papers that the process used to select him was unlawful. The Court of Appeals, the state's highest court, is slated to hear arguments in the case on Tuesday. The Manhattan U.S. attorney's office probed the party's ties to Data & Field Services in 2010, but that probe has ended. Dan Donovan, the district attorney in Staten Island, also began investigating and later recused himself from the probe. Mr. Donovan's request for a special prosecutor, which was granted, is under seal.  Joe Dinkin, a spokesman for the party, said the legal requirements for appointing the special prosecutor weren't followed."The appointment should be voided and the matter returned to the DA," he said.

 2009 : Bill de Blasio's campaign used political consulting firm Data & Field Services, which operated out of the same office of the labor-backed Working Families Party. (City & State) * 2011 : Scott Levenson has close ties to the Working Families Party (City & State) * No firewalls: Working Families Party straddles thin line between party, nonprofit (NYDN 2009) * ACORN sowed seeds for de Blasio - The Advance Group* Data and Field Services - New York Daily News * The NYC Working Families Party Scam UPDATED(Daily Kos, 2009)

More About WFP Data and Field 
WFP, Acorn 2.0 and the New Progressive Machine

Seniors and the NYCHA  . . .     
Williamsburg Hipsters' Plan For Seniors Being Priced Out of NYC

A Modest Proposal Prediction: 
Eat Them
Finding adequate housing for New York City’s older residents has become a challenge as the city’s affordable housing shortage has been harshest on older New Yorkers
Up in Years and All but Priced Out of New York(NYT)Finding adequate housing has become an all-consuming preoccupation for many aging residents, a group whose explosive growth and changing needs pose challenges for the city.  Finding adequate housing has become an all-consuming preoccupation for many older New Yorkers, a group whose explosive growth and changing housing needs pose new challenges for the city. As serious as New York’s affordable housing shortage has become, the squeeze has been perhaps harshest on older adults. The intensifying demand for housing for aging adults already overwhelms the existing offerings, especially for the poor, senior services providers say. And the city, they say, has no comprehensive housing plan to accommodate an aging population.
The Soylent Green Solution Det. Thorn: It's people. Soylent Green is made out of people. They're making our food out of people. Next thing they'll be breeding us like cattle for food. You've gotta tell them. You've gotta tell them!
More On Gentification

Taxi and Their Lobbyists  . . .

Dead Boys Mom Fights Taxi Lobbyists
Mom Of Boy Killed By A Taxi Fights to Suspend Cabbie's License if He Kills or Critically Hurts A Pedestrian 
Mom of boy killed by taxi lobbies for harsher legislation(NYP)The devastated mom of a 9-year-old boy killed by a taxi is set to push for harsher laws against rogue cab drivers at a City Council transportation super-hearing Wednesday. Dana Lerner, whose son, Cooper Stock, was killed on the Upper West Side in January, is slated to testify in favor the bill, which would suspend a cabbie’s license if he kills or critically hurts a pedestrian after failing to yield. “I want justice for [Cooper],” Lerner told The Post. * Quinn's Friendship With Lobbyist Giske May Pose Test in Mayor Bid (NYT)* Again, Christine Quinn Connection To Lobbyist Emily Giske ... * New York City Approves 30¢ Surcharge to Pay for Accessible Taxis(NYT)

Taxi Lobbyists Bolton St. Johns, Inc., Connelly McLaughlin; Davidoff Hutcher & Citron LLP;  Elser Moskowitz Edelman & Dicker, New York Taxi Workers Alliance, Inc., Connective Strategies LLC.

Taxi Industry Gets $$$ to Pay for Handicap and A Tip to Pocket From Mayor They Backed

Taxi fares getting $.30 hike to fund city’s handicap cab goal(NYP) All taxi passengers will begin paying a 30-cent surcharge next year to make half of the city’s cabs wheelchair accessible by 2020, according to new rules approved by the Taxi... The surcharge will start next January, and will be added on to yellow and green taxi trips, as well as livery car rides. Flashback the WHY The News says de Blasio's 30-cent surcharge on cab fares is a huge gift to a prosperous industry. The Daily News writes that the proposed 30-cent surcharge for taxi trips would create roughly $53 million per year in revenue—a huge amount of money to give to a prosperous industry: Flashback De Blasio Reaps Big Donations From Taxi Industry(NYT)De Blasio, a taxi-industry ally, will start by ditching Yassky(Capital*   Analysis: Cab industry donors going strong for de Blasio(Newsday)
More About the Taxi Industry

Union's Agree to Two Levels of Pay  . . .
Union, Developers and Lobbyists Affordable Housing Deal Makes Low Wages Legal
The Building and Construction Trades Council of Greater New York has proposed as much as 40 percent in cost savings for the city if the de Blasio administration includes union labor in its 10-year affordable housing building plan, the Post writes: * Mayor Bill de Blasio is set to unveil his affordable housing plan, and for it to be a real success, it should make New York City a great place to live for all income levels, Nancy Biberman writes in amNewYork: *Unions May Hire Low-Wage Workers for Mayor's Affordable ...(DNAINFO) City Hall and construction unions discuss a new labor tier with workers for affordable projects. * Unions offer pay cuts for jobs in affordable-housing plan(NYP)

Flashback Problem 
Affordable Housing Goes Hand With Low Wages and Cheating
On April 14th the Daily News Exposes the Under Belly of the Small Group of Developers Who Control Affordable Housing Construction

(NYDN) Mayor de Blasio promises to build more affordable apartments in New York City, but several contractors working on these projects have been cited for wage cheating and dangerous working conditions. These big players have paid out a total of $11.1 million in back wages in the last three years, records show. Their shady track record doesn’t keep them from working on new city projects. The mayor's campaign to build more affordable apartments has a dirty little underbelly: Many of the contractors who build cheaper units have been cited repeatedly for cheating workers out of a decent wage, a Daily News investigation has found.An affordable housing project a few blocks away, builder MDG Design and subcontractor F. Rizos, settled federal wage-cheating charges in April 2013 by agreeing to pay $960,000 in back wages. Just one month later, MDG was hit with more wage-cheating charges on another city project, this time for $4.5 million in back wages, a city record. Workers not included on certified employee lists are told to hide when inspectors show up. Contractors write checks at prevailing wage rates, then make workers kick back a percentage to keep their jobs. “Over and over again, HPD goes back to the same small group of contractors that it has done business with for years,” said Robert Bonanza, head of the 17,000-member Mason Tenders District Council. “Regardless of their status with other government agencies, and regardless of the crimes they have committed against workers, HPD continues to do business as it always has.” Domingo Reyes, 46, who also has four children, said he was “promoted” to foreman but continued to get the same paycheck as the workers he oversaw. His boss instructed him to hide the cheating from inspectors by keeping some workers off the “certified” sheet submitted to the city: “We are 30 people working and there are half of the people on the sheet. This happens every day at 3 o’clock.” To date, the biggest wage cheating case in the city involves MDG Design. The $4.5 million decision ordered by the U.S. Department of Labor found MDG owed back wages from work at an HPD-funded project called Grand Street Guild. MDG has contested the finding. Despite this black eye, HPD then announced MDG’s involvement in building 55 affordable units at a city-owned warehouse at 337 Berry St. in Williamsburg. On its application for this job, MDG did not mention the pending case involving the Grand Street Guild project. Developers Oppose Landmarking Older Buildings A bill proposed by Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer would allow for a 30-day landmarks preservation review for older buildings set to be demolished, to the chagrin of developers, construction unions and affordable housing advocates, the Post writes:
More About Affordable Housing Problems
Real Estate, Tax Breakes and Politics

Speed Cameras  . . .

More Traffic Cameras For Schools Crossings 
A bill that would allow the use of speed cameras in school zones has passed both chambers of the state Legislature and now sits on Cuomo's desk, the Legislative Gazette reports: * The state Senate approved a bill that would add 120 speed cameras to New York City, up from the current 20.*  State Backs More Cameras to Catch Speeders Near City’s Schools (NYT) * Charter schools in demand among NYC parents(NYP) * State Senate approves more speed enforcement cameras for NYC(NYDN) * State Backs More Cameras to Catch Speeders Near New York City’s Schools(NYT)

Grimm Arrest and Campaign  . . .

Is the GOP Looking to Dump Grimm

Geraldo, Grimm Rage Against Long Island Assembly Candidate(NYO)

Rep. Michael Grimm pleads case to GOP leader(NYDN)* Congressman Michael Grimm “got a chance to plead his case Wednesday” to House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, the Daily News reports: “A source said Cantor (R-Va.) did not demand Grimm’s resignation, despite GOP leaders’ decision to cut ties with Grimm. ‘We have a system that affords the congressman the presumption of innocence, Cantor said.”* And talk show host Geraldo Rivera gave another pro-Grimm speech yesterday on his radio show:* An assistant U.S. attorney working Rep. Michael Grimm’s corruption case is running for the state Assembly.
Grimm Race, NYC Congressional Delegation
Mr. Smith Go  . . .
Team Comrie Smell Smith's Blood

 Leroy Comrie to Challenge State Senator Malcolm Smith in Primary: NY1 has learned that former City Queens Deputy Borough President Leroy Comrie will run for the state Senate seat held by indicted Sen. Malcolm Smith, even if he has to run in a primary against the current senator, whose federal bribery trial is set for June, the Daily News reports:

Malcolm Smith Trial Starts June 5th

No Delay in Smith Trial
Judge Refuses to Delay Sen. Malcolm Smith's Trial - Hamodia WHITE PLAINS - A New York state senator accused of corruption won’t be able to delay his trial until after his primary, a federal judge said Monday, setting the trial for Malcolm Smith, a Queens Democrat, to June 2
Legislator Up for Re-election Wants to Delay Bribery Trial
(NYT) Senator Malcolm A. Smith, who has been charged in a plot to bribe his way onto the ballot to run for mayor of New York, says his trial would interfere with his re-election campaign. * No delay on Smith trial - Queens Chronicle: Editorials * Judge refuses to delay Malcolm Smith's NY trial - * Contenders for Malcom Smith Seat Undaunted by Comrie Candidacy(NYO)
More on the Malcolm Smith Investigations
More on the AEG Cover-Up

.Attorney General Campign  . . .
GOP Candidate for AG Almost Ready

Schneiderman Counter Punches Super PAC
Schneiderman makes fund-raising appeal to counter Super PAC(NYP)
John Cahill takes major step toward NY attorney general run by creating campaign committee(NYDN) A former top aide to ex-Gov. George Pataki has taken a major step toward announcing his candidacy by creating a campaign committee that allows him to begin accepting contributions. Cahill has never run for office. He currently heads an energy and environmental consulting firm with his former boss, The Pataki-Cahill Group.
Attorney General Schneiderman and His Re-Election

FDNY Suspends 4Works Following Deadly Fire

Why did the 911 system not default to another worker?
FDNY suspends four following deadly fire(Capital) Four members of the fire department have been suspended without pay for up to 30 days after an investigation found they were too slow to dispatch Emergency Medical Services during a fatal fire in Far Rockaway last weekend. The city Department of Investigation and Fire Department jointly issued a memo on Friday to Mayor Bill de Blasio announcing its ongoing probe found three Queens dispatchers and one supervisor were responsible for a seven-minute delay in notifying E.M.S. after firefighters at the scene requested emergency medical technicians. The two-page letter notes that "some of the four involved in this response" had previous "disciplinary issues … including prior documented instances related to mishandling of fire incidents and a prior documented instance of failure to supervise." But so far the evidence points to human error in the Saturday evening fire that killed two 4-year-old children, who had reportedly been playing with a lighter. "The notification to EMS was not promptly made," reads the background portion of the memo, which was released to the press around 4 p.m.* City Suspends Dispatchers Over Ambulance Delay in Fatal Fire(NYT) Department investigators focus on why dispatchers failed to send ambulances to a home in Far Rockaway when firefighters confirmed a fire. * Man caught on video firing at two others in broad daylight(NYP) * Four Emergency Personnel Disciplined in Fatal Fire(WSJ)

Empty Stories on East Side  . . .
The Upper East Side Economic Slump

The hidden proof the economy is still awful(NYP) Stand at the corner of Third Avenue and East 61st Street and behold the Manhattan retail wasteland. One block north of Bloomingdale’s, in the middle of one of the most wealthy neighborhoods in the nation, three of four corner stores stand empty. Large window signs tout their availability. “Rent me!” they fairly scream. “Please!”  The only one of the four stores that is not vacant is at the southwest corner: Italian restaurant Isle of Capri. The secret of its success? It’s owned by the same family that owns the building.
NYC Economic Troubles 


Sex and the Speaker   . . .
Repeated Sex Offenders Bill Stuck in Sheldon Silver's Assembly

The Daily News writes that a bill to correct a flaw in state law that allows repeat sex offenders to get slaps on the wrist is unaccountably stalled in the Assembly, though with Speaker Sheldon Silver looking to make nice with women as of late, fixing the flaw would be a small start* Curb the creeps A free pass for perverts must be revoked. Thanks to a glaring flaw in state law, doing time in prison can translate into a free pass for compulsive perverts to get slaps on the wrist for their crimes. Back in 2000, in a crackdown on recidivist flashers, grinders and other creeps, the Legislature created a new crime of “persistent sexual abuse.” Those convicted of two sexual misdemeanors in the previous 10 years would have their third offense upgraded to a felony. But lawmakers failed to specify — as they have for every other similar statute — that time spent behind bars should not count toward the 10 years.
Albany Hush Fund Cover Up, Press Containment Timeline

A Pol Who Got It in 1976 . . .  Does Anyone In NY Understand Economics in 2014?
Daniel Moynihan
"New York Does Not Get Its Fair Share of the Federal Budget" (1976)

39 Years Later We Have the 62 Mets As Our Elected Officials
In New York we have an analogous situation in our relationship with the federal government. For every dollar we send to Washington, we get about 75 cents in return. (Newsday)Yet New Yorkers as a whole send a delegation of representatives to Washington every two years, the majority of which philosophically advocates for a larger federal government. The late-Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan famously issued a report on this issue a generation ago, when New Yorkers were only losing 15 cents on the dollar. The Moynihan Report raised eyebrows at the time, but it had no lasting impact on many New York voters. We still cheer when a "grant" comes in from Washington, instead of asking how much this latest largesse cost us.It's worse in another way, too, since Moynihan's days. The federal government has now perfected the art of leveraging tax dollars against the very states providing them. In a type of bureaucratic judo, it's learned to get its claws into the mechanics of state and local governments using money provided by their own residents. Daniel Patrick Moynihan - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia * Republican consultant William O’Reilly writes in amNewYork that New York loses 25 cents for every dollar it sends to the federal government, and logically, New Yorkers should want the smallest federal government possible

The Greed is Good Lists Journalism Generation Forgot the Teachings of Their Predecessors

Breaking Bad New Journalism Culture
Today's news blogs compete with each other to celebrate power and greed. They praise the lobbyists who are the backbone of the corruption culture of New York and give praise to elected officials that have accomplished nothing but gain power. Wayne Barrett wrote in  the Village Voice in 2010. that campaign consultant lobbyist "Sheinkopf one of the worse consultant lobbyist, makes kings so he can then make deals with the kings he’s made."   It is now clear that cutback in the media is not the worst thing that has happen to journalism in New York, it is the change in their moral that should be worrying everyone.

Welcome to the New York Pottersville
In a short generation were have gone from reporters like Murray Kempton, Jimmy Breslin, Wayne Barrett and Jack Newfield who honored the fighters of the power elite and looked to help the average New Yorker, especially those who have been run over in life like the poor and sick. While nobody was better than the Voice's Barrett and Tom Robbins investigation and exposing government corruption, the late Jack Newfield always gave thanks to those in the city's trenches who have quietly gone about the tough, everyday work of remedying inequality, as well as those who have stood tall against abuses of power. Their deeds ennoble this city more than a trainload of the fatuous celebrities who soak up so much of the media's attentions. The Village Voice reporter began this Thanksgiving tradition in 1976, in the depths of the city's last fiscal crisis, a time when the powerbrokers were again working overtime to remake New York in their own image. Newfield called his honor roll an ode to "heroes and heroines, the sung, and the unsung. Newfield had many of his beloved of lists: "Worst Judges" and "Worst Landlords" were two of his creations. He even offered an end-of-year rundown dubbed "Remember the Greediest." But he started publishing what he called his "Honor Roll" on Thanksgiving week back in 1976. He said it was his favorite task and it's not hard to see why. As much as our chief duty may be to smoke out wrongdoing, the bigger reward is always found in hailing those who do right. Here are just a few of those who richly deserve a Thanksgiving toast.

Morality and Outrage Lost
It a shame that this generation of reporters pays little attention to the morality lessons Murray Kemptom and Pete Hamill wrote about.  On how government should treat its citizens and the everyman outrage at the bums who run this city that Jimmy Breslin gave us.  City and State's power list,   NY Observer power list. True News will reveal what those on the list are doing to our city and the people who live in the horror they have created for the average New Yorkers who the past generation of reporters felt it was their mission to protect.


Brooklyn DA Hynes  . . .    
DA Hynes Remembers Differently Each Day
Ex-prosecutor says DA Hynes’ counsel told her to lie: In a letter to a federal judge, Barbara Burke cla...

Hynes’s Lack of Curiosity May Come at a Cost(Powell, NYT)
Charles J. Hynes was the head of the Brooklyn district attorney’s office when Jabbar Collins was prosecuted and wrongly imprisoned.Tracking the explanations of the former Brooklyn district attorney, Charles J. Hynes, for his office’s malpractices is like hunting a rabbit: The prey keeps bouncing here and there before disappearing under a hedgerow. Mr. Richardson was present when I interviewed Mr. Hynes 15 months ago.

He had come to help his boss. I could not reach him this week, but George Arzt got on the telephone.Mr. Arzt had served as a spokesman for Mr. Hynes’s unsuccessful re-election bid and he had also sat in on my interview with the district attorney. I asked about his recollection of Mr. Hynes’s answer. “I think you asked if Jabbar Collins was guilty,” adding that Mr. Hynes “said he believed that he did it.”Mr. Hynes’s lack of curiosity was as remarkable as the cases themselves. Under oath, he said, he recognized there were “palpably egregious” violations in the Collins case.
Flashback both George Arzt and the Advance Group were worked for the 2013 Hynes' campaign in the primary 
More About DA Hynes

In 2013 George Artz Was Paid $75.00 By the Hynes Campaign

Another appalling tall tale by Brooklyn's graceless ex-DA, whose own spokesman agrees he lied.
George Arzt after he runs a losing campaign for Hynes throws him under the bus
More About Corrupt Lobbyist George Arzt 

Met Council's Rapfogel  . . .    
Rapfogel Plea Deal How Many Will Go
Philanthropist Admits Stealing More Than $1 Million From Charity(NYT) His wife, Judy, the longtime chief of staff to Mr. Silver, was not there; neither was Mr. Silver, who over the years has allocated millions of public dollars to Met Council. According to a plea agreement filed in court and an earlier criminal complaint, Mr. Rapfogel gave about $350,000 of the stolen funds to one of his three sons to buy a home. Neither Mr. Silver nor Ms. Rapfogel has been linked to the financial irregularities at the Met Council, and they have denied any knowledge of Mr. Rapfogel’s activities. The assembly speaker issued a terse statement about Mr. Rapfogel’s plea, saying simply: “I am deeply saddened by this entire episode.” Ms. Rapfogel declined to comment through a spokesman, Stu Loeser.* Nonprofit boss diverted $360K to fund luxe trips, shopping sprees Another None Profit (NYP) A fat-cat operator of a shady Bronx nonprofit copped a plea Thursday to diverting more than $360,000 in government funds earmarked for cancer screening so he could live large by splurging the cash on pricey overseas trips, gambling and shopping sprees.
More on Rapfogel's Non Profit Tax Shelters Connects to political payoffs


911 Scandal  . . .    
Update Mayor Distancing Himself from 911 Scandal, DOI To Investigate 911 Delay 
De Blasio demands answers for FDNY delay in fatal house fire(NYP) * City to probe response to fatal Rockaway fire(Capital) The city's Department of Investigation will launch a formal probe of the emergency response to a fire that killed two children in Far Rockaway late Saturday.  The city's emergency response system was also faulted in the death of Ariel Russo, a 4-year-old pedestrian killed when she was crossing the street with her grandmother last year, while the system was undergoing a $2 billion overhaul. In that case, D.O.I. found that human error was to blame for a four-minute delay in answering the call, which delayed the emergency response to the scene of the accident.
Another EMS Delay and Two Dead Children
Update Juan Gonzalez discovers another 911 breakdown — at Coney Island fire that killed NYPD Officer Dennis Guerrin

Official Says E.M.S. Response to Deadly Fire in the Rockaways Was Delayed(NYT) The New York City fire commissioner said on Monday that ambulances were not immediately dispatched when they should have been to a Queens fire that killed two 4-year-old children and injured three other people late Saturday night.* FDNY admits ambulances were delayed to fatal fire(NYP)

“When you have what we call a working fire, an ambulance should be dispatched,” Cassano said. “It wasn’t dispatched at that time.”*Ambulances Were Dispatched Late to Fatal Fire in Queens, Official Says(NYT) The cause of the 8-minute delay has yet to be determined, Fire Commissioner Salvatore J. Cassano said.  The delay appeared to stem from a breakdown in communications between firefighters at the two-story home on Bay 30th Street in Far Rockaway and emergency medical service dispatchers, who must be alerted by their Fire Department counterparts before sending an ambulance to a reported fire.* Delay in Emergency Response to Fatal Queens Fire(WSJ)

 de Blasio to Dump Fire Commission
 Fire Commissioner Sal Cassano will not stay on permanently under New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, although the mayor would not say why or when a new commissioner would be appointed, the Post reports * De Blasio, on fire chief, stresses ‘interim’(Capital) * De Blasio douses hopes of FDNY commissioner(NYDN)

More on the 911 Scandal

Higher MYA Fares Coming  . . .     
No Fare Hike Connected to New Contract? BS
"Cuomo’s election-year triumph will be very expensive for  riders and for city taxpayers, too" . . . 
* Budget experts say the MTA’s plan to pay for its new labor deal will shift its future costs and could lead to battles over fare increases and taxpayer subsidies down the road, the Journal writes: * amNewYork writes that the agreement between the MTA and TWU Local 100 is hardly ideal, but it does offer a decent tradeoff between the needs of workers and riders:* MTA raises funded by raiding retirees(NYP Ed) * Labor Pact Would Shift MTA Funds(WSJ)

New Labor Contract Will Cost M.T.A. $525 Million(NYT) The Metropolitan Transportation Authority said it would pay for raises by redirecting some money from pension and health care funds.* Documents show that the MTA estimates $411 million in added costs for the new tentative deal struck between the agency and TWU Local 100, the Journal reports:
More on the MTA


Queens Library Scandal  . . .     
What is the Queens Library Hiding?
Ask CM Jimmy Van Bramer Who is Also Hiding or Covering Up the Library Books

Open the library books(NYDN Ed) Queens Library must let controller audit. The Queens Library trustees have joined President Tom Galante in stonewalling scrutiny of the system’s financial records. The whole lot of them must be scared. Controller Scott Stringer has sought, so far without success, access to the library’s ledgers. In denying him, the trustees and Galante have once more asserted that, as a nonprofit organization, the library is beyond public accountability.
More About the Queens Library Cover-Up


Bad Schools Open, But Losing Students  . . .    .
Poor Schools Not Being Closed . . . But, Parents and Students Closing Them With Their Feet

Wasting Students
City’s worst high school has hundreds of empty seats(NYP)  The troubled Springfield Gardens school is the least popular in the entire city, Department of Education statistics show. It raises the question why August Martin is still in business, considering it had a dismal 39 percent graduation rate in 2013 and got an “F” in student performance and progress. “This school holds students back, especially the ones who are doing well,” one anonymous student posted online. “They treat us and talk to us as if we’re animals.” The school also has a reputation for violence. Students committed at least 72 offenses in the 2011-2012 school year, including eight assaults, two sex offenses and 19 instances of intimidation, state records show.
More On Education and Charter Schools
Schools Chancellor Carmen Fariña

As of Friday, it took 126 days on average to get a repair done that required skilled labor. That's two-and-a-half times what de Blasio said. - See more at:

Decreasing Voter Turnout  . . .
Afghanistan Women Facing Danger Shame New Yorkers' Low Voters Turn Outs

2013 Lowest Turnout Since Women Given Right to Vote, 200,000 Votes Less Than 2009. Below Afghanistan Woman Vote Defy Threats of Violence
KABUL, Afghanistan Vote
New York City Vote
A Little Over 1 Million NYC Voters Show Up At the Polls Yesterday 
Lowest turnout since women won the right to vote in 1918 
Only 1.7% of all the registered voters voted in the city voted for Bloomberg in 2009. The mayor received 585,000 out of the 4,657,516 New Yorkers Registered. 1.2 Million Voted. New York: Turnout Appears Headed for Record Low

Group Paid to Encourage Voters Turnout Earns Their $ By Reporting Turnout Stinks
NYC voter turnout stinks: report(NYDN) A new report from the city's Voter Assistance Advisory Commission finds that despite a range of enticements to get Gothamites to the polls, only a quarter of those eligible to vote in 2013's election of the first new mayor in a dozen years bothered to show up. Report found Campaign messages overwhelming non-partisan voter information; and
NY Decreasing Voter Turnout

Board of Election's Corruption   . . .    

de Blasio's DOI and Council Unexpectedly Going After BOE Corruption
City Councilman Ben Kallos rips Board of Elections for dodging blame after probe revealed problems(NYDN) Kallos slammed the Board of Elections on Wednesday for dodging blame when responding to a scathing Department of Investigation probe. Kallos had told the board to hand in a plan on how it would fix problems identified by the Department of Investigation. Instead, officials sent in a response that dismissed most of department’s recommendations as outdated.
More on Corruption at the BOE  More 

Corrupt Pols Waiting for Trial   . . .    

Bruno's Short Court Days
The federal judge in former state Senate Majority Leader Joe Bruno’s second corruption trial, due to start Monday, has agreed to Bruno’s request for shorter court days on the condition that Bruno doesn’t use the early dismissal time simply to chat with the press outside the courthouse. (TU) Tomorrow, former Senate Majority Leader Joe Bruno will return to U.S. District Court in Albany to face trial for the second time. The charges center on hundreds of thousands of dollars in “consulting fees” Bruno received from businessman Jared Abbruzzese, or companies controlled by him, between 2004 and 2006.
More on Albany Corruption

A Political Corruption Trial Legal Trick?
Federal prosecutors allege former Queens GOP Vice Chairman Vincent Tabone is violating conflict-of-interest laws by using a law firm whose lead partner is running for Congress for his trial for public corruption charges.
GOP operative could be violating conflict of interest laws: feds(NYP)A Queens Republican operative fighting public corruption charges is hurting his own defense — and potentially violating conflict-of-interest laws — by continuing to use a law firm whose lead partner is running for Congress, the feds allege in new court papers. Assistant US Attorney Justin Anderson asked Manhattan federal Judge Kenneth Karas on Monday to “conduct an inquiry” into the potential conflict over ex-Queens GOP Vice Chairman Vincent Tabone using a Mineola law firm partnered by Republican Grant Lally. The Post reported in February that Lally was raising eyebrows in political circles by telling people he’s running for Democrat Steve Israel’s Congressional seat on Long Island. In light of his campaign, Lally later handed over the assignment of representing Tabone — who is accused of pocketing $25,000 as part of a failed scheme to get state Sen. Malcolm Smith (D-Queens) on the 2012 GOP line for mayor — to other lawyers at his firm, including his wife Deborah Misir. “Under counsel’s reasoning, it might be the case that calling a particular witness would be helpful to Tabone’s defense but cast Mr. Lally’s political party or his interests in an unfavorable light,” he noted. “Under that scenario, the decision to call such a witness might be influenced — consciously or unconsciously — by Mr. Lally’s concern for his electoral interests.
More on the GOP Bottom Feeders and Corruption
Queens Brooklyn GOP Civil War
Ocean Hill-Brownsville Panel Discussion at Museum of the City of New York - See more at:
Ocean Hill-Brownsville Panel Discussion at Museum of the City of New York - See more at:

Media Update   . . .    
Veteran Journalists to Start Politics Site for Bloomberg(NYT) John Heilemann and Mark Halperin, political journalists known for their detailed, gossip-filled books on the past two presidential campaigns, will join Bloomberg in the coming days to start a new site that will focus on American politics and policy. The new project, Bloomberg Politics, is part of a broader strategy put in place by Justin B. Smith, who was appointed chief executive of Bloomberg Media Group last summer after serving as president of Atlantic Media.
President Obama made jokes about FOX News and Hillary Clinton at the White House Correspondents Dinner. Julia Louis-Dreyfus, who plays the VP on TV, teamed up with real life VP Joe Biden for a Correspondents Dinner video that features several VIP cameos.
Washington   . . .    
THE WALL STREET PRIMARY -- “Wall Street Republicans’ dark secret: Hillary 2016,” by Ben White and Maggie Haberman.: “Two dozen interviews about the 2016 race with unaligned GOP donors, financial executives and their Washington lobbyists turned up a consistent … consolation candidate if [Jeb] Bush demurs, … Chris Christie doesn’t recover politically and no other establishment favorite gets nominated: Hillary Clinton. Most donors and Wall Street titans have not lined up with any candidate yet, waiting for the field to take shape after the midterms. But if Bush doesn’t run, the list of Republican saviors could be short. Some donors fear Christie will never overcome the Bridgegate scandal. Rep. Paul Ryan … so far seems more inclined to stay in the House … And to varying degrees, … Florida Sen. Marco Rubio and Govs. Scott Walker of Wisconsin and John Kasich of Ohio … are either unknown or untrusted.”
 Last 100 Days in Washington Coverage

Crime Law and Order   . . .    

CATCHING A PREDATOR: How 2 victims of sex abuse caught the accused pedophile preying on children 30 years later(NYDN)
Five people slashed by madman outside Bronx methadone clinic(NYP)

BREAKING: Former Cop Arrested In Boro Park Hate Graffiti Spree In Custody
Just heard from NYPD 66th Pct CO Inspector Deddo that they have the anti-Semitic graffiti suspect in custody this morning.
Hate grafitti spray painted onto Brooklyn wall(NYP)
Swastikas and anti-Semitic graffiti spray-painted in multiple Brooklyn locations(WPIX)
Five people slashed by madman outside Bronx methadone clinic(NYP)
NYPD officer charged with firing a gun in Westchester during an argument:(WSJ)

Pack Heat or Die

Why Kahton Killed A 41 Year Old Angel Rojas, A Man He Never Met
Teen accused of killing bystander: ‘It’s war out here’(NYP)He said he needed to pack heat just to survive in New York City. A Brooklyn teen who fatally shot a hardworking father while aiming for a rival gang member on a crowded city bus had told cops, “It’s war out here,” and lamented the future he had flushed away “Who did I hit? Was it a rival or an innocent man? Why didn’t I just go home?” Kahton Anderson, 14 — who pleaded not guilty at his Brooklyn arraignment Friday — had said, according to court papers.“Yo am I gonna do life for this?”
Teenager Pleads Not Guilty in Killing on Bus(NYT)
In court documents, the suspect, Kahton Anderson, 14, asked investigators whom he had shot.
Life Sentence Is Imposed in ’08 Killing of Therapist
The sentencing of David Tarloff, a schizophrenic man convicted of murdering a therapist on the Upper East Side, ends a legal saga that demonstrated the complexities of the insanity defense.
Cabby guilty in 2008 rape of passenger(NYP)
NYPD has arrested nearly 100 subway break dancers so far this year

Terrorism   . . .    
Milder View of Suspect in U.S. Case on Terror(NYT)
Ahmed Abassi, who prosecutors in Manhattan once said had spoken of killing 100,000 people, was offered a plea bargain that could lead to a sentence of six months.
More on Terrorism