New York elected officials flocked to Park Avenue to support 32BJ SEIU in its contract talks with building owners. Thousands of 32BJ SEIU union members gathered for a rally featuring speeches from many of those elected officials and culminating in a vote to authorize a strike should negotiations fail. Elected officials attending included Governor Andrew Cuomo, Mayor Bill de Blasio, Public Advocate Tish James, Comptroller Scott Stringer and many state and city legislators.
Governor Andrew Cuomo visited the MTA’s 207th Street Overhaul Shop to tout his “Subway Action Plan.” Now fully funded through a state budget provision that forced New York City to provide half of the required funding, the Subway Action Plan is intended to address some of the myriad problems facing the subway system. Among those accompanying Cuomo was MTA Chairman Joe Lhota and TWU President John Samuelsen. A post-tour press conference included Samuelsen attacking Mayor Bill de Blasio as Cuomo stood stone faced.
2017 mayoral election opponents Nicole Malliotakis and Bo Dietl joined forces to protest the release of the “Palm Sunday massacre” killer. Christopher Thomas was convicted on ten counts of manslaughter, but not murder, and sentenced to 50 years in prison. He was recently released, pursuant to state law, after serving 32 of those 50 years. Malliotakis, Dietl and NYS Senator Marty Golden appeared outside Governor Cuomo’s Manhattan office in protest.
Governor Andrew Cuomo touted the reunification of New York State Senate Democrats, bringing ostensibly erstwhile rivals Andrea Stewart-Cousins and Jeff Klein together in a press conference. Stewart-Cousins, the head of the “mainline” Senate Democrats and Klein, head of the Independent Democratic Conference or IDC, pledged unity and cooperation during a press conference Wednesday in Cuomo’s Manhattan office.
An Air Force helicopter pilot, a New York City fire marshal and former fire fighter and a newly-minted attorney were commemorated with a memorial service in Washington Square Park and a celebration in a nearby NYU auditorium Thursday. Remarkably it was one man who filled all of those professional roles, at the age of 37.
Christopher “Tripp” Zanetis died in Iraq, piloting a helicopter while on active duty with the 106th Rescue Wing of the Air National Guard. He had been called up in January, a few months after graduating from Stanford Law School and joining the law firm Debevoise & Plimpton as an associate. His professional career began with the New York City Fire Department, first as a fire fighter and then as a fire marshal. Adding to the multiple intersecting layers of his life reflected in the memorial service, Zanetis graduated from NYU and worked in a nearby firehouse during his FDNY career. Continue reading Photo Gallery: Zanetis Memorial→
FDNY Lieutenant Michael Davidson was laid to rest Tuesday, with thousands of firefighters and others attending his funeral at Manhattan’s St. Patrick’s Cathedral. Davidson, whose father is a retired FDNY firefighter and whose brother is a current FDNY firefighter, died fighting a five alarm fire in Harlem Thursday night. Davidson’s survivors include his wife Eileen and their four children, ages 7,6,3 and 1.
Mayor Bill de Blasio, Public Advocate Tish James, Comptroller Scott Stringer and Council Speaker Corey Johnson attended the funeral, with de Blasio and Fire Commissioner Daniel Nigro giving eulogies. Council Members Bob Holden, Jimmy Van Bramer, Keith Powers and Joe Borelli, Rep. Dan Donovan and Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer also attended.
Three Republican gubernatorial candidates pitched their candidacies to the Manhattan Republican Executive Committee Wednesday night, seeking the Committee’s endorsement in the developing race for the party’s 2018 nomination. Joe Holland, John DeFrancisco and Marc Molinaro each addressed the audience at Manhattan’s Metropolitan Republican Club for about 25 minutes, with 10 minutes for a speech and 15 minutes for audience Q&A.
Joe Percoco, former top aide to Governor Andrew Cuomo, was convicted today on three of the six bribery charges he faced in a federal trial. Percoco emerged from the courthouse with his attorneys, stopping to briefly speak with the assembled press before walking across Foley Square to the subway.
Governor Andrew Cuomo attended a campaign rally Sunday, supporting Assembly Member Shelley Mayer in her bid to win a state senate seat and the broader Democratic effort to attain a 32 seat majority in the 63 seat state senate. Mayer is running to succeed former NYS senator George Latimer. The special election to replace Latimer, elected Westchester County Executive in November, is on April 24th.
Latimer and New York State Senate Democratic Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins joined Cuomo and Mayer in speaking at the rally.
Governor Andrew Cuomo and former vice president Al Gore appeared together at NYU Friday in an environmental protection themed presentation. Cuomo announced that he has formally requested that New York be excluded from the federal government’s expansion of offshore oil and gas drilling access and touted several other initiatives that he’s undertaken as governor.
A helicopter crashed in the East River Sunday evening, killing five of the six persons aboard. The crash, at about Manhattan’s 88th Street and close to Gracie Mansion, triggered an enormous rescue effort from the NYPD and FDNY. The pilot survived, but all five passengers died.
The helicopter sank shortly after crashing, but the crew of a nearby tugboat lashed the wreckage to the tug. NYPD and FDNY rescue crews worked to extract the victims as the tug and helicopter floated downstream, with the five passengers brought ashore at the 36th Street ferry dock in Manhattan.
We caught up with Joe Percoco this afternoon as he departed from his federal corruption trial on a small bit of good news for him. Today the jury, after several partial days of deliberation, advised the court that it is deadlocked and several jurors asked to be released from further service. Judge Valerie Caproni directed the jury to continue deliberating, although she released them early for the day and cancelled deliberations on Wednesday as a significant snowstorm is expected.
Percoco and his attorneys exited the federal courthouse at 40 Centre Street, with attorney Barry Bohrer speaking briefly with the press before the group headed across Foley Square to the subway. Percoco listened as his attorney spoke, but offered no comments of own.