Candidate de Blasio & Member Items

As a mayoral candidate Bill de Blasio called for a complete ban on city council member items.  It’s a view not widely shared by council members then or now.  Member items are a modest portion of the overall city budget, but a flashpoint with the potential for significant disagreement between the mayor and council.

In this April 2013 press conference de Blasio issued his call for a ban and addressed his own tenure as a council member who sought and received member items.  Then-council member Dan Halloran and NYS Senator Malcolm Smith had been arrested the day before on a variety of corruption charges and then-Council Speaker Christine Quinn was regarded as the front runner in the race for mayor.


Here are selected excerpts from de Blasio’s press conference:

Full Press Conference:

Here is de Blasio’s full press conference, which runs about 15 minutes.

de Blasio Press Q&A: The 200,000 Units Edition (Updated x 2)

In a pair of press conferences Mayor Bill de Blasio today unveiled his aggressive affordable housing plan, aiming to create and preserve 200,000 units of housing over 10 years.  In a morning Brooklyn appearance and an afternoon Bronx press conference the mayor discussed his plan at length.

Update #2 – Rangel:

Congressman Charles Rangel, whose district includes the Bronx press conference location, spoke briefly at the Bronx press conference.  While supportive of the mayor, Rangel has called for abandoning the practice of combining luxury and affordable housing and declared “we have no crisis in luxury housing.”

Update – Highlight Reel:

Our highlight reel distills the two full press conferences, with selected excerpts from the initial statements and Q&A portion of both press conferences.

(Full Q&A from both press conferences after the jump)

Continue reading de Blasio Press Q&A: The 200,000 Units Edition (Updated x 2)

de Blasio Press Q&A: The UFT Edition

Mayor Bill de Blasio announced a preliminary agreement on a new contract with the United Federation of Teachers.  The agreement covers nine years, retroactive from November 1, 2009, through October 31, 2018, with total pay increases of approximately 18%.  Other provisions include an agreement to implement yet to be finalized changes in employee health care intended to save at least $3.4 billion, a loosening of regulations intended to allow greater control by individual principals and teachers, an increase in parent/teacher interactions, changes in teacher professional development and evaluations and an enhanced ability of the City to terminate teachers who behave inappropriately and teachers who are in the Absent Teacher Reserve.

Here is the mayor’s full press Q&A, addressing on-topic questions only.