Stringer’s solution is the commuter tax, but his problem is Albany

Briefing: Stringer. (Jackie Weisberg via flickr)
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In a speech this morning, Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer will call for the reinstatement of the commuter tax. 

Michael Grynbaum at the Times offers a healthy dose of skepticism about whether the plan could ever actually get approved by legislators in Albany, where the old commuter tax died an ignominious death.

Stringer told Grace Rauh he could get the legislation passed if he were elected mayor, and pointed to Michael Bloomberg and Andrew Cuomo, who accomplished things people said they couldn't.

The examples he cited were Bloomberg winning mayoral control of schools and Cuomo getting budgets on time.

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Neither of those would be directly analogous to Stringer's situation with reinstatement of the commuter tax. Bloomberg has reliable allies in the Senate Republicans, who he heavily funds. Cuomo has the constitutional power to put budget cuts in emergency spending bills if legislators want to go down that route.

Getting the commuter tax would require convincing suburban legislators to approve a tax on their constituents for services they take for granted.

In 2005, when Democratic mayoral candidate Fernando Ferrer announced his support for a commuter-tax plan, Michael Bloomberg's campaign immediately sent out a list of elected officials who had endorsed Ferrer and had voted to get rid of the commuter tax. And that was the story. 

UPDATE: A spokesperson for Stringer called to say, "Scott is willing to take on the big fights for the middle class, even when the nay-sayers say it can't be done."

Some Links:

2012

Robert De Niro likes the Buffett Rule, and doesn't like "preposterous things being said by the Republicans especially." [Frances Martel]

The failure to pass the Buffett Rule in the Senate foreshadows the debate we'll see on the campaign trail. [Associated Press]

2013

Stringer calls for reinstating the commuter tax. The problem is that Albany needs to pass it. [Michael Grynbaum]

Stringer is optimistic he get get it approved in Albany, since Cuomo and Bloomberg have defied odds there. [Grace Rauh]

More on Koch hoping for Ray Kelly to enter the mayor's race. [John Del Signore]

NY-08

Jeffries' ascension is the latest in the "generally peaceful changing of the guard in African-American politics in New York." [Andrew Grossman]

Brooklyn Democratic Party leader Vito Lopez sees Towns' retirement as a sign of the county organization's strength. [Celeste Katz]

NY-24 

Rep. Anne Marie Buerkle got endorsed by the Independence Party. She got more than 6,000 votes on it when she won in 2010 by 648 votes. [Mark Weiner]

The Liz Benjamin Dossier

"The Cuomo administration was in damage-control mode…" [Thomas Kaplan]

One writer isn't so surprised at the whole thing. [Garth Johnston]

Education

"[I]t’s as if the department channeled the most troubled students to the most troubled schools." [Michael Powell]

Democrats in the State Senate got $85,000 from the teachers union after skipping a vote to rollback union pensions. [Erik Kriss]

Pulitzer Surveillance

"Let the AP toast an ill-gotten prize that actually says more about mainstream journalism than about the NYPD." [New York Post]