8:31 am Feb. 8, 2013
Whenever there are elections in New York City, there are complaints about the people running them. The lines are too long, the words on the ballots are too small, the names of registered voters are missing.
Mayor Michael Bloomberg, a particularly vocal critic, has argued that the New York City Board of Elections needs to be turned into a mayoral agency, while the board maintains it is independent from the executive and legislative branches for a reason. (Republican and Democratic party leaders make appointments that are vetted by the City Council).
Now change is coming, but it's not structural, and it's really only happening because of a technicality.
Jimmy Oddo, the Republican leader of City Council, is leading an effort to fill accidentally created vacancies on the board after county party leaders missed a regular deadline for formally renominating the sitting board members.
The board will essentially be swapping out Republican appointees for other Republican appointees. But "Mr. Oddo is painting his efforts as an unexpected opportunity to reform New York City’s patronage-laden elections system," as Chris Bragg wrote in Crain's.
Oddo told him, "[Maybe] this will give us the ability to put more energetic members on the board and change the system."
"Democrats kick puppies. No, really. Look what they just did to Ed Cox…" — Bob McManus
Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer outlined plans he said will help mitigate damage from future storms and floods. [Jill Colvin]
Republican City Council members scored a coup when "the Brooklyn and Queens Republican party leaders missed a deadline for filling the election board" vacancies. [Celeste Katz]
Councilman Jimmy Oddo said this could lead to reform at the Board. [Chris Bragg]
One newspaper editorial page wants the death penalty for the Staten Island man who killed two NYPD officers. [Daily News]
More on Assemblyman William Boyland possibly forfeiting $67,000 for falsifying travel records. [Thomas Kaplan]
Governor Andrew Cuomo is "pleased" with accolades he's receiving from MSNBC hosts. [Reid Pillifant]
Bloomberg takes baby Asprin every day, and doctors say it helps reduce the risk of heart attacks and strokes. [Dana Rubinstein]
An Arab-American activist appreciates Bloomberg's comments about Brooklyn College, but said the NYPD's spying on Muslims is a bigger problem. [Azi Paybarah]
Bloomberg explained the benefits of banning styrofoam containers by noting that "landfills cost us a lot of money." [Dana Rubinstein]
It's hard to look away from John Catsimatidis. [Azi Paybarah]
Video: Letitia James called the city's planning commissioner "Robert Moses in a skirt." [Azi Paybarah]
Looking at the "T" magazine revamp. [Joe Pompeo]
"Governor Andrew M. Cuomo is in New York City. "
Noon. Al Appleton, a former New York City Commissioner of Environmental protection and others opponents of franking protest outside Cuomo's midtown office, 633 Third Avenue. @SCnycGroup @3ParksDems @NYPIRG @NYAgainstFrack #DontFrackNY
Noon to 2 p.m. Council members Melissa Mark-Viverito, Margaret Chin, New York City Comptroller John Liu and others celebrate Chinese New Year, at the Union Settlement Association, 237 East 104th Street, in Manhattan. @mmViverito @CM_MargaretChin @JohncLiu #YearOfTheSnake
7 p.m. On "The Road to City Hal": Chief Judge Jonathan Lippman, and Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer. [NY1] @RoadToCityHall @ScottMStringer #nyc2013 #NYcourts
At the first forum featuring all the candidates for Public Advocate, Reshma Saujani said, "I get stuff done," while Dan Squadron criticized the Board of Elections. [Jill Colvin]
Video from that forum featuring the public advocate's forum. [John Kenny]
In seeking a seventh term in office, Brooklyn D.A. Charles Hynes told his supporters "We're not done." [Mosi Secret]
Democrats want the state attorney general to investigate Republican Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano for how he solicited and spent campaign funds. [Kieran Crowley]
City Hall / City Council
Mayor Michael Bloomberg is building a massive headquarters and expanding his social influence in London. [Michael Grynbaum]
Maybe a foot of snow for the city. [David Seifman and Andy Soltis]
The new City Council district lines were approved. [Jill Colvin]
After the New York City comptroller's office rejected a contract for a homeless shelter, deputy mayor Linda Gibbs said it was "an irresponsible and blatant attempt to advance his political ambitions." [Tina Moore]
Headline: "Elmhurst worker fired for single sick day." [Alexa Altman]
Anthony Weiner and Eliot Spitzer ran into each other at a restaurant. [Page Six]
There were about three dozen pro-Israel protesters at the lecture. [Lia Eustachewich]
Police in front of the building where the lecture was held searched bags and checked attendees' IDs against a list of confirmed guests. [Vivian Yee]
A professor said, "tonight should be remembered as one of Brooklyn College’s finest moments." [Corey Robin]
One editorial board is convinced Cuomo's repeated delays in announcing a final decision on fracking is, in fact, his final decision. [New York Post]
Yoko Ono's anti-fracking message for Cuomo. [Glenn Blain]
New York State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman spoke to Al Sharpton about the need for federal gun control laws. [Politics Nation]
Schneiderman secured a $2.3 million settlement with St. Lukes-Roosevelt Hospital and Continuum Health Partners for improperly billing Medicaid and Medicare. [Molly Gamble]
Schneiderman also announced the arrest of a Brooklyn psychiatrist who allegedly falsified $230,000 worth of bills to Medicaid. [Josh Saul]
More on Schneiderman's probe of Standard & Poor's Rating. [Jeannette Neumann]
John Brennan got grilled by the Senate Intelligence Committee about the administration's use of drones. [Mark Mazzetti and Scott Shane]
Rudy Giuliani says drone strikes have to be done "very carefully." [Piers Morgan]
Chris Christie is still trying to figure out the politics of his weight. [Maggie Haberman]
House Democrats have at least a little more sway in the new Congress. [Jeremy Peters]