New York Today: What Will Albany Democrats Do With New Power?

Thursday: Democrats in control, lots of sunshine and the New York Comedy Festival.

Comments: 32

  1. Democrats in Albany should take meaningful action to diversity the entertainment industry, which provides tens of thousands of jobs to New Yorkers. They should adopt an incentive to hire women and people of color to write and direct television; diverse storytelling is good for the TV shows, good for the industry, and good for the state economy.

  2. @Lowell - Alex's "you can call me Al" on twitter makes me think Paul Simon; so this tune sticks, and great coverage from both:Though people think Hollywood = movies, NYC has had such a starring role. Tune of “Feeling Groovy” Pipe down, you talk too loud I hear you above our crowd, now Picking you up in my phones We’re just trying to make our movie (Ya-da-ya-da, make our movie) Hello, drivers, why so noisy Wish we’d shot this thing in Joi-sey But the talent here's the key Keeps us here to make our movie, (Ya-da-ya-da, make our movie) We’ve got so much to do, a schedule to keep Who knew it’s a city that really can’t sleep But the actors all live here, so travel is cheap So we’re here to make our movie (Ya-da-ya-da, make our movie)

  3. or they can hire people who can make good shows, regardless of color or sex.

  4. Why do you assume that people hired because of diversity initiatives won't be good? Did it ever occur to you that success in the entertainment industry is partly a function of access and that women and minorities are often shut out? If not, you haven't read much.

  5. Infrastructure and subway investment is vital to support growth. Improving the voting process. The broken machines are an embarrassment and the delays make voting difficult for everyone with limited time. I support single-payer nationally but do not support it at the state level. It just doesn’t work. Instead, the state should improve Medicaid, copying the Connecticut model by taking Medicaid profits away from insurance companies and administering it directly. The money that saves can go into improving provider options and support for Medicaid patients. We can also save money by investing in better methods than incarcerating people. Incarceration is expensive and we can invest in education and housing.

  6. RE: Congestion pricing - Drivers should not be punished for the following causes midtown traffic congestion: Construction; delivery trucks; one-lane cross-town streets because of wide bike lanes; streets blocked around Trump buildings (Columbus Circle, Fifth Ave.).

  7. Why do you feel as a driver that the whole city has to stop for your convenience?

  8. Fix the subway. Fix the subway. Fix the subway. Financing by congestion pricing is not unfair. Trucks need to make deliveries. Bikes keep cars off the street. Construction is inconvenient but necessary. Trump buildings-ugh. What to say about that? But that is a minor issue. Capping Uber was a good start. Suburban SUVs don’t need to clog the streets. The least we can do is make them pay for the privilege. Congestion pricing is working in other cities. Let’s give it a try here.

  9. I'd like to see environmental action on the State level. We need to outlaw plastic bags as well as styrofoam (in restaurants), get power from our great resource at Niagara Falls, outlaw new development of energy production plants that are not clean or future focused.

  10. I feel like protecting abortion rights is a big deal. Some of these politicians feel like it is their obligations to interject themselves into what is supposed to be an individual's own decision. I personally think abortion is wrong. This is my belief. I also think it is an extremely tragic decision. But I have no right to believe that my opinion is what others should go by. Roe vs Wade needs to be protected.

  11. Your ability to separate your personal beliefs from the law makes you a good citizen. We all have laws with which we don't agree that we nonetheless follow.

  12. Democrats in power means only one thing. Watch your wallets. They will raise our taxes to feed their social programs. Stay tuned.

  13. @Steve Why do Republicans always want to pay more for everything? What's wrong with them? Universal healthcare is essentially a massive tort reform- it's exactly what we need. When everyone is covered you no longer need injury coverage on your homeowner's or your auto insurance. Municipalities will no longer need huge liability policies for villages, towns, automobiles, or schools or workman's comp. If everyone has medical coverage paying for it twice and three times over is simply redundant. It will lower the cost of doing business for contractors and sole proprietors. The reason people are forced to sue after an accident or injury is to pay their medical bills- with universal HC there will no longer be any unpaid medical bills so there will be no reason to sue, everyone will already be covered. It will free up our court system and there will be far fewer cases to try. It will reduce billing costs for medical care- there will only be one place to submit a bill. Providers will know exactly how to reduce costs because there will only be one target price for them to shoot for. Social programs are just the "Costco" or "Sam's Club" of government. Taxpayers buy in bulk and leverage their buying power and share the discount amongst themselves. What's wrong with that? It's OK for paper towels and laundry detergent but not healthcare? Why?

  14. "From the forecast: "stunning fall days" tune of "Blue Skies" Blue State, that's what we are State Senate's been red, well so far. Blue now, Dems in control State Senate's blue now, call the roll. Will we see the trains running so fast? Pot was a crime, that may not last. Hoping for new rents you can afford. Could be the gov won't be ignored. Blue state, but check the news: Clues that you might soon lose those blues?

  15. Today's Metropolitan Diary entry sounds familiar.

  16. Welcome to one party rule in New York.

  17. Election reform, election reform, election reform. Cuomo is bold to call New York the progressive capital of the nation when our voting laws are so terrible and turnout is an embarrassment. Turnout nearly doubled in the last primary and it was STILL only at like 25 percent, if that. Turnout in this election was the highest in almost 30 years and it was still barely 50 percent of registered voters. Arbitrary registration deadlines prevent so many people from voting: to vote in the last primary in September, Democrats had to change their registration by the PREVIOUS October. Same-day registration and early voting would be a start. It’s an absolute travesty that the governor thinks the “progressive capital of the nation” has almost the worst voter turnout in the country. That’s barely a functioning democracy.

  18. Make NY a trend leader for single-payer experiment. Federal government is unlikely to do it, lets do it at state level, and find what works for funding it. NYC has a strong economy, with businesses getting all sorts of tax breaks under republican tax plan. Perhaps add an employer tax, similar to Sander's former plan, that helps fund it, and brings money back to the people in NY. And make it work for ALL of NY independent of income, not just a Medicaid replacement for lower income. Subway Fixes. With new Amazon announcement, use this as an opportunity to optimize subway and lead the way to bringing new business into NYC, Long Island City, and everywhere. Transport should respond to and invite business growth, not be a limiting barrier. Congestion pricing can't hurt. Whether to increase funding or not, traffic in/out of Manhattan is a nightmare, and often unable to drive anymore. Lets reduce unneeded vehicles on the road all around, would make city a more enjoyable place to live. Further: invest in parks and recreation, public green spaces, and access to upstate park systems. Lead the way, don't just maintain bare minimum.

  19. Making bail payments affordable to all would lower the population on Rikers and enable shutting it down. Wealthy people can commit horrific crimes and pay bail, poor or even average -income people stay locked up, often for lesser offenses without conviction. Families are broken, apartments are lost, children are taken away, etc. Not necessary.

  20. Please take the lead, and follow CA's direction, and ban plastic bag usage in stores. There are alternatives. Further, improve the system for plastic bottles, be it an added/increased bottle deposit across all bottles, to encourage recycling solutions. Or simply ban plastic water bottles in favor of a better solution. Any non-biodegradable plastic that has a consumer lifespan of 5 minutes is not needed, we'll find an alternative quickly in their absence. There are plenty of other environmental issues with our products, lets start the flow towards improvement, and make it continual.

  21. Adding doula services to Medicare. Legalizing marijuana. Authorizing all NYers as registered voters unless opted out.

  22. I’m worried that Cuomo’s presidential aspirations will stop him from doing what’s right for NY and NYC. We need tolls on bridges. Subway riders shouldn’t have to pay for bridge maintenance alone. Those who actually use the bridges must pay. I’m not saying 15 dollars. But two or three dollars is reasonable.

  23. I am hoping to see the Democrats take on reform in the criminal justice system. First order of business should be eliminating cash bail for all misdemeanors and non-violent felonies. Lives are ruined because of the cash bail system - an arrested person can lose their job, their home, their children, and their vehicle due to an inability to pay cash bail that results in their incarceration. The use of solitary confinement in prisons should also be either eliminated or sharply reduced. The UN has condemned the use of solitary confinement, yet it still continues in NYS. Senate Republicans have been blocking measures like this because of some "tough on crime" ideal they hold up, but the time has come for these humane reforms.

  24. I was persuaded by the wonderful research by NY Times investigative reporters that documented how little the Trump family paid for estate tax liability as did other very wealthy families that wrongful actions may well have occurred. The abettors to these tax maneuvers are still alive. I think a jury or judge should be allowed to weigh whether what happened was avoidance or evasion. To allow possibly recouping billions for the state treasury statutes of limitation that could be pleaded as bars should be repealed. Similarly at about the same time the Trumps submitted possibly fraudulent claims justifying apartment rent increases as the Kushner family has done more recently. These too and similar maneuvers should be examined and when appropriate rectified.

  25. @Jonathan Marsh, I think about all the times, for me maybe even hundreds in 30 years, as a lawyer in the 1980s then after that as a CPA, I've negotiated or helped with the calculations with states like (for my expertise) NYS and NJ especially, but many times the IRS, saying that even though our client feels that if this were put through a court, they would win on all these two or three issues you raise, our client would rather not spend time getting a legal case together or money okaying lawyers and CPAs. So we’d agree that we won’t appeal your whole assessment, Mr. [Tax Agent], if you'll give up this issue in total and we'll let you have that issue. (Compromising on numbers within an issue is tricky, since that can have the feel for zeroing in on a made-up number.) So issue #1 can LOOK un-assessed but the Agent just gave it up while we agreed to issue #2 and #3 to let the taxing agents not have to appeal or litigate. This even crosses tax years when some clients are on essentially a perpetual audit, as in: we’ll give you this for 2011 and 2012, but you’ll only assess these two years and not go back beyond that to other open tax years, so that neither has to go through a time-consuming and costly process.

  26. WOMEN'S BOOTS Piled behind every Closed closet door, Why do they always Fit better in the store?

  27. What will Democrats do in Albany??? -- Hopefully, FIRST and FOREMOST, they will wrangle control of the MTA purse strings from Republican hands and give us all a break from the non-stop fare hikes that somehow do little to improve the over-crowding, lack of punctuality and general safety of our beleaguered transit system...THEN, maybe they can take on the State-controlled Rent Guidelines Board and take steps to ensure the sanctity of our election process by getting voting machines that work when they're supposed to. That's a fair start.

  28. What does it take to understand the fight for congestion pricing for NYC is a lost cause and keeps on getting defeated at every turn? Believe it or not, the most vocal opponents to this are actually liberal and that includes NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio himself, who is hardly a conservative. The reason why it's so opposed is mainly because it's seen as a regressive tax on lower classes who drive and a punishment to those who have little to no alternatives to driving into the city. Meanwhile, the rich will most likely support this because they won't be deterred by it as they will see it as a drop in the bucket for them. The main goal of congestion pricing isn't even about reduce congestion, but rather making a revenue off of it, because if it was really about reducing congestion, then there would be better ways to do so without imposing such a tax. Also, if less are driving due to not wanting to pay, then no revenue can be made. A better idea to help with funding the MTA is to audit on where their existing revenue streams are going to and correct them before even thinking about this one as well as having a better enforcement and punishment on fare beaters, which will probably make fare hikes less constant if done better. More importantly, most of those who support the idea of congestion pricing don't drive on a regular basis, so they don't seem to know or care what those of what we have to do on a regular basis when driving.

  29. If possible lower the prices of prescriptions, particularly insulin which is a life saving drug and the cost has skyrocketed, even for patients with insurance. Introduce and pass the Emergency Prescription Bill which has been enacted in several states. Under current law, in the event of an emergency situation where a patient cannot obtain a doctor’s script for the refill of a prescription, a pharmacist could issue a 72 hour supply of that drug. Issues with the law arose, with drugs that are not available in 72-hour supplies, such as insulin, and therefore could not be dispensed to the patient. This situation has resulted in fatalities in other states

  30. Wendy, on what you said yesterday, compiling the best of the Hair Forecast: Hair forecast: summertime sadness. August 2018 Hair forecast: rather hopeless May 2016 Hair forecast: perpetually droopy. May 2016 Hair forecast: Soggy Santa, with a serious case of hat hair. Dec 2016 Hair forecast: A midsummer night's droop. Hair forecast: crimped to the max. April 2018 Hair forecast: weeping willow. March 2018 Hair forecast: Jon Snow in a storm. July 2017 Hair forecast: weekend wilt. May 2018 Hair forecast: like you walked through a carwash April 25 2018 Hair forecast: like you stuck your head in the washing machine. Nov 2016 Hair forecast: A midsummer night's droop. July 2018 Hair forecast: A frazzled Mrs. Frizzle. Aug 2017 Hair forecast: moist mess. Sept 2017 Hair forecast: Don't even try. July 2016 Hair forecast: helmet hair. March 2018 Hair forecast: Sopping Shirley Temple. May 2017 Hair forecast: the Albert Einstein. Oct 2016 Hair forecast: lots-o’-knots. Jan 2017 Hair forecast: Don't even try. July 2016 Hair forecast: helmet hair. March 2018 Hair forecast: Curls may resemble a broken slinky. Aug 2016 Hair forecast here: a (foul) ball of tangles. Oct 2017 Hair forecast: Medusa. Nov 2016 Hair forecast: Hood-smushed, with earmuff line. Jan 2017 Hair forecast: Sopping Shirley Temple. May 2017 Hair forecast: the Albert Einstein. Oct 2016 Hair forecast: lots-o’-knots. Jan 2017

  31. Hoping there's no copyright issue, since they're all brief quotes; I assembled the ones I could find here: The Hair Forecast, while it sounds flip-hip as a title (like Winter Coat Forecast had previously), captured what New York Today was carrying on from wonderful predecessors, and with close to three years, the creativity kept going: In one line, it represented with a smile or laugh what we really need to know as we go to work crossed with a modern often cultural slant, from Game of Thrones to Shakespeare in the Park. It was not done every day, and seems never to have had a loser in terms of a feel-good moment before we were about to read some often-troubling “In the News” items. That's New York every meaningful work day I've had. (I'd love to know some of the ones that didn't make it, but that's for them to choose to reveal - or not. LOL.)