At a mayoral forum last night on the issue of poverty, Public Advocate Bill de Blasio attacked Council Speaker and mayoral front-runner Christine Quinn on both the living wage bill she did pass and the paid sick leave bill she did not.
Mayor Michael Bloomberg is holding his final State of the City address in Barclays Center this afternoon.(1)
Related Companies, part of whose massive Hudson Yards project was exempted from the Living Wage bill, has donated more money to Christine Quinn's campaign.
Michael Bloomberg said the City Council's decision to delay passage of the Living Wage bill until after Fresh Direct relocated from Queens to the Bronx proves how bad it is for businesses.
"It's fascinating," Bloomberg said on is weekly radio show. "This was a bill that was held up until Fresh Direct signed their lease and the bill said only people that signed leases afterwards would this apply to, because FreshDirect never would have come, or would have gone to New Jersey if we had this bill." "Does that tell you about the next company" Bloomberg asked rhetorically.
Though Public Advocate Bill de Blasio only came out in support of "living wage" legislation in December, the former political operative and would-be mayor wasted little time capitalizing on Council Speaker's Christine Quinn's awkward defense of Michael Bloomberg's honor yesterday afternoon.
Christine Quinn has maintained a good working relationship with Mayor Michael Bloomberg, even as she steered two wage bills that are bitterly opposed by the administration toward passage in the City Council.
"Let me just start by making a reference to a prior press conference," she began, at a podium inside City Hall's Red Room. "Let me be clear. I couldn't disagree with Mayor Bloomberg more on the substance as it relates to the 'living wage' bill and couldn't agree more with the Living Wage Coalition that the piece of legislation we will vote on today is a good and solid piece of legislation.
"That said, I feel incredibly strongly that all of us in government have to do everything we can to make sure government is civil," she said.
Last Wednesday, during a talk with seniors in Astoria, she was asked what kind of schools chancellor she would select if she were mayor. The man who asked the question prefaced it by saying Bloomberg "knows nothing about education."
Quinn rebutted the man's notion, but did not ask him to apologize -- as she did today when an attendee at her Living Wage press conference referred to the mayor as "Pharaoh Bloomberg."
After a "living wage" supporter called Mayor Michael Bloomberg a "pharaoh," Council Speaker Christine Quinn stormed away from a press conference.(4)
Mayor Michael Bloomberg said mandating wages in the private sector is reminiscent of the way government used to operate and predicted it could have cataclysmic affects.
The Post called Bloomberg's veto of the legislation a "stunning rebuke" to the Council and it's speaker, Christine Quinn. The Times said Quinn's response was carefully crafted, saying the move was "disappointing" but "but declining to criticize him more sharply."
Governor Andrew Cuomo, on a slightly different issue, said raising the minimum wage "can create jobs" if it is an "intelligent increase."
There's a powerful sense of nostalgia in the news today.
Mayor Michael Bloomberg warned that proposed bills to guarantee highers wages for workers at city-subsidized projects was a "throwback" to a time when government socked the private sector with too many taxes.
Governor Andrew Cuomo said talk of a possible presidential run is a re-run of what his father went through two decades ago.
And sex columnist Dan Savage said that when he started, the Village Voice wouldn't run his columns because they were, at the time, "too dirty for New York."
In response to Mayor Michael Bloomberg's criticism this morning of the City Council's new wage mandates—which, by extension, were a criticism of the council's leadership—City Council Christine Quinn pointed out that the mayor has a more liberal history on this issue than he might have others believe.
This morning Mayor Michael Bloomberg took what he presented as a principled stand on two pieces of legislation, one already passed, the other about to be passed, that would require recipients of city subsidies to pay their employees a certain wage.
City Council Speaker Christine Quinn has taken pains to show that she acts independently of her ally, Michael Bloomberg. But sometimes Bloomberg says things that convey the opposite impression.
On Friday afternoon, the City Council released its living wage bill, which is designed to guarantee that the recipients of city economic development subsidies pay their employees at least $10 an hour.
Here is a complete list of the employers who will be exempted from the legislation.