Cuomo’s LIPA investigation and Cuomo’s LIPA role

Briefing: Cuomo and Silver. (New York Now, via flickr)
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Andrew Cuomo has organized an investigation into how and why the Long Island Power Authority failed in its response to Hurricane Sandy.

There's plenty for the investigators to look at, given how much is wrong with LIPA, including, significantly, the role of Cuomo himself in allowing the state-run utility to exist in such a shambolic state until now.  

The governor is "blatantly pointing them in the wrong direction," warns columnist Nicole Gelinas, by drawing attention to National Grid, the contracted entity that provides the services, rather than to LIPA itself. National Grid, she notes, is an easy target, since it's going to be replaced soon anyway.

Some blame lies with Cuomo, Gelinas argues, because he did not push for changes earlier, and because he allowed LIPA to continue to shoulder debt that lawmakers wanted to hide from the public.

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Cuomo's sole appointee to fill one of the "slew" of vacancies on LIPA's board isn't an energy expert, but rather a big contributor to his campaign.

As the Times editorial page puts it today, "allowing such managerial ineptitude to fester [at LIPA] was bound to lead to disaster."

Quote

"Big winner is Stringer - lots of free press for bid. As for mayoral contenders, he was polling at 6%. Enough said." — David Greenfield

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Obama reportedly urged Cuomo to work with as many neighboring states as possible in order to make his request for federal aid palatable to more members of Congress. [Ken Lovett]

Cuomo "is blatantly pointing them in the wrong direction" by referring to National Grid, which doesn't set investment or debt policy, whenever LIPA is mentioned. Also, Cuomo's sole appointment to LIPA is not an energy expert at all. [Nicole Gelinas]

Scandal-scarred assemblyman Vito Lopez has a better chance of winning a City Council seat, now that his house has been moved into the district represented by Diana Reyna. The change was approved by the Redistricting Commission, perhaps with the support of Council Speaker Christine Quinn. Will she vote for the plan? [Sally Goldenberg]

Scarlett Johansson didn't think Stringer would ever drop out of the mayor's race. [Jill Colvin]

The Democrats' new line, pushed by Cuomo, Quinn and others, is to accept global warming as the new normal, rather than necessarily doing anything to change it. [Evan Thies]

From Capital

Susan Rice-themed Sunday shows become a forum for theories about the Benghazi talking points. [Reid Pillifant]

Why Scott Stringer dropped out: there was no room for a candidate of his description. [Azi Paybarah]

He says he's "stepping up." [Azi Paybarah]

For the first time in 35 years, a Manhattan borough president is running for an office other than mayor. [Azi Paybarah]

Rupert Murdoch sort of apologizes. [Azi Paybarah]

How the violence in Israel and Gaza is playing out, very differently, on front pages around the world. [Azi Paybarah]

Events

"Governor Andrew M. Cuomo is in Albany."

11:30 a.m. Public Advocate Bill de Blaso thanks school custodians for their work after the hurricane, at I.S. 211, at 1001 100th Street, in Brooklyn.

12:30 p.m. Bloomberg has a Q&A after re-opening P.S. 43, a school damaged by the hurricane, at 160 Beach 29thth Street, in Queens.

6:45 p.m. Bloomberg speaks at a "Life Without Lupus" gala, at the American Museum of Natural History, 200 Central Park West, in Manhattan.

7:30 p.m. Bloomberg presents the Female Race of the Year Award at the 2012 Gold Goggles Awards event, at the Mariot Marquis Hotel, 6th floor, at 1535 Broadway, in Manhattan.

2013 / City Hall

The mayoral candidates spin Stringer's decision. [David Chen]

Stringer's departure essentially makes it a three-way Democratic primary between Quinn, de Blasio and Thompson. [Michael Howard Saul]

The Democratic primary is still a race to 40 percent to avoid a run-off. [Andrew Hawkins]

Stringer's decision confirms long-held rumors about him dropping out. [Erin Durkin]

The comptroller race has its own "complicated political dynamics," since the incumbent, John Liu, is expected to run for mayor, but a fund-raising scandal could derail those plans and he could seek re-election. [AP]

Stringer announced endorsements from Rep. Jerry Nadler, Ed Koch and UFT president Michael Mulgrew. [Jill Colvin]

The district changes in Bushwick could help deliver Quinn Hispanic voters in Brooklyn, if it's seen as a favor to Councilman Erik Dilan. [Sally Goldenberg]

Advocates had a mixed reaction to the new district lines. [David Chen]

Bloomberg reportedly cursed out State Senator Malcolm Smith for asking for the National Guard to patrol his neighborhood following Hurricane Sandy. "Someone even tried to break into my car with me in it," Smith said, while Bloomberg's spokesman denied he cursed. [David Seifman]

Liu should pay his fine for illegal postering. [New York Post]

New York can learn from Newark, which just struck a new deal with its teacher's union. [Daily News]

A woman claims an elderly Rockaway man drowned during Hurricane Sandy after she couldn't get help from calling 911 or 311 because operators were unreachable, unprepared and unable to dispatch fire or medical assistance. [Kirstan Conley and Chuck Bennett]

Albany

Cuomo doesn't think there needs to be a special session of the legislature in order to deal with the fiscal impact of Hurricane Sandy, until a decision is made about federal aid the state will receive. [Ken Lovett]

Cuomo's $30 billion request for federal aid is not credible, since there's no clear picture of what's broken, and a huge surge in post-disaster spending could lead to waste, like it did after 9/11, says an editorial page. [New York Post]

"[A]llowing such managerial ineptitude to fester [at LIPA] was bound to lead to disaster," an editorial page argues. [New York Times]

An editorial page says Cuomo should permit fracking because of its role in "slowing global warming, saving money, boosting the economy and improving national security." [Daily News]

Cuomo decided not to call the legislature back for a special session, nixing the chance of a pay hike, according to a Cuomo source. [Fred Dicker]

Washington

National Republicans are trying to figure out how to prevent more Todd Akins. [Manu Raju]

Paul Ryan is still seen as a force on the Hill, at least on fiscal matters, and returned to Washington backing John Boehner, in a departure from last year. [Jennifer Steinhauer]

Nine former members of Congress won their seats back this year, including Dan Maffei, one of five Democrats to beat Tea Party freshmen. [Ed O'Keefe]

Israeli ambassador Michael Oren deleted a tweet suggesting Israel would be willing to sit down with Hamas. [Andrew Kaczynski]

President Obama visited democracy activist Aung San Suu Kyi in Burma. [Josh Gerstein]

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