Tag Archive: Michael Bloomberg

Mar 12 2014

Liu sues Campaign Finance Board over matching funds

johncliu

He’s fighting back.

In a federal lawsuit, former Comptroller John Liu says he “suffered extreme mental and emotional anguish, along with dignity harms, resulting from being unfairly and unwarrantedly accused of wrongdoing.”

The lawsuit also alleges that former Mayor Michael Bloomberg improperly appointed Rose Gill Hearn as the board’s new chairwoman.

Stay tuned for more details.

[From The WSJ] John Liu, a former New York City comptroller who ran unsuccessfully for mayor last year, accused the city Campaign Finance Board in a federal lawsuit of unlawfully denying his campaign millions of dollars in public matching funds.

According to the lawsuit, which Mr. Liu announced at a news conference on Wednesday, the board delivered his campaign a “death sentence” when it decided in August not to give him any matching funds. The lawsuit alleges the board based its decision on a “shoddy investigation” and that its treatment of Mr. Liu was “wholly arbitrary and without rational basis.”

The lawsuit alleges Mr. Liu “suffered extreme mental and emotional anguish, along with dignity harms, resulting from being unfairly and unwarrantedly accused of wrongdoing.”

“The board’s decision led to incalculable damage to Liu’s professional reputation and earning potential,” the suit alleges.

In May, a federal jury convicted Mr. Liu’s former campaign treasurer, Jia “Jenny” Hou of various charges involving campaign finance fraud. She was later sentenced to 10 months in prison and is in the process of appealing her conviction. Mr. Liu was never charged in the case.

Amy Loprest, the board’s executive director, responded to the lawsuit in an email: “Over 25 years and seven mayoral elections, the board’s oversight has always been tough, but fair. It protects taxpayers, and ensures campaigns that receive funds are playing by the rules.”

Under the city’s public-funding system, candidates may receive $6 in taxpayer funds for each of the first $175 donated by a city resident, for a maximum of $1,050 in public funds per contributor. Mr. Liu could have received a maximum of $3.53 million in the Democratic primary.

In the September primary, Mr. Liu won 7% of the vote, coming in fourth place among the five major candidates.

Mr. Liu’s lawsuit also alleges that former Mayor Michael Bloomberg, in his final days at City Hall last year, improperly appointed Rose Gill Hearn as the board’s new chairwoman. According to the City Charter, the mayor has the authority to appoint the board’s leader following consultation with the speaker of the City Council.

For full article: http://blogs.wsj.com/metropolis/2014/03/12/john-liu-files-federal-lawsuit-against-campaign-finance-board/

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Permanent link to this article: http://queens-politics.com/2014/03/liu-sues-campaign-finance-board-over-matching-funds/

Sep 18 2013

Bloomberg Reveals Secret Plan To Trump Bill de Blasio

Mayor+Bloomberg

Did you really think Bloomberg would sit on sidelines while his legacy gets trounced? Picture from the Village Voice.

There is only one winning political party in NYC, the money party and Bill de Blasio crossed it.

According to whispers from an inner-circle Bloomberg loyalist, Mayor Bloomberg is so infuriated with Bill de Blasio for trouncing his legacy by running a smear campaign as the anti-Bloomberg candidate – and achieving high levels of success while doing so – that he decided to dig deep in his own pockets by bankrolling an independent expenditure with upwards of $20 million of his own money to assist Joe Lhota on the road to victory.

Could this be the turning point in the campaign?

The source, who for years built strong personal relations with Bloomberg, said that Bloomberg’s ego can’t take the de Blasio beating and political embarrassment without him standing up and fighting back.

If the mayor can’t do it in the press or in debates, he’ll do it the only way he knows how, his wallet.

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Permanent link to this article: http://queens-politics.com/2013/09/bloomberg-reveals-secret-plan-to-trump-de-blasio/

Jun 28 2013

Thompson Demands Apology From Bloomberg

BillThompson_5011smallPress Release: Thompson on Mayor Bloomberg’s Insulting Racial Profiling Statement: These comments are not worthy of any elected official, much less the Mayor of New York City”
 
“As a New Yorker, as a father, and as a son of this city, I found Mayor Bloomberg’s comments to be outrageous and insulting.
 
“The Mayor’s comments seem to indicate that because you’re Black or Latino, you’re automatically a murder suspect. That assumption is ridiculous.
 
“What he seems to indicate to the hundreds of thousands of people who have been unnecessarily stopped-and-frisked is, ‘We’re sorry we didn’t stop more people.’
It just shows how out of touch the Mayor is with the vast majority of New Yorkers. And it shows a lack of understanding of what the practice of stop-and-frisk under his administration was supposed to have been about. It shows a lack of awareness and a lack of sensitivity.
 
“These comments are not worthy of any elected official, much less the Mayor of New York City.”
 
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Permanent link to this article: http://queens-politics.com/2013/06/thompson-demands-apology-from-mayor-bloomberg/

Oct 01 2012

Bloomberg Endorses Grace for Congress

It's also Grace Meng's Birthday.

 Press Release:

Assemblywoman Grace Meng, the Democratic candidate for Congress in New York’s 6thdistrict, today received the endorsement of Mayor Michael Bloomberg. Mayor Bloomberg has been active on the national stage, particularly on the issues of reviving our economy, pushing common sense immigration policy, advocating for stricter gun laws and pursuing solutions to the issues that many in Congress do not want to tackle.

“New Yorkers demand representation in Washington that puts the needs of the taxpayers ahead of partisan politics. Grace Meng will be the independent voice in Congress that middle-class families in Queens deserve. Whether it’s her outspoken support for sensible gun legislation to help make our streets safer or her advocacy for common sense immigration reform, Grace embodies the values that Queens’ residents care about most. Grace Meng can be counted on to deliver for the constituents of the 6th Congressional District, just as she has as a bridge-builder in Albany,” said Mayor Bloomberg.

Assemblywoman Meng said, “I am proud and honored to have the support of Mayor Bloomberg, whose leadership has helped make New York City and the nation stronger. Like the mayor, I have made the tough, but necessary choices to deliver for my constituents as an Assembly Member – a habit I plan to continue as a member of Congress. Partisan bickering isn’t creating jobs, making our streets safer, or ensuring the preservation and long-term solvency of critical entitlement programs like Social Security and Medicare. Now more than ever, middle-class families in Queens need consensus-builders to deliver on the issues that matter most to them.”

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Permanent link to this article: http://queens-politics.com/2012/10/bloomberg/

Jan 25 2012

The Man in the Hathaway Shirt

The five chairs of the NYC GOP unite for a moment to condemn Mayor Bloomberg's recent mumbo jumbo.

In a joint statement, the five County Chairmen of the NYC Republican party bite back at Mayor Bloomberg for asserting that the next Mayor of New York City will be a Democrat.

The letter vows to provide voters with a ‘Republican alternative’ in 2013.

The following chairmen issued the searing statement:

  •  Philip Ragusa of Queens County
  • Joseph J. Savino of Bronx County  
  • Craig Eaton of Kings County  
  • Daniel Issacs of New York County 
  • Robert Scamardella of Richmond County

 

“Mayor Bloomberg indicated that the City will have a Democratic Mayor come 2013.  Our Mayor is evidently unaware that we are committed to providing New Yorkers with a Republican alternative. In fact, we will field a strong winning candidate for Mayor in 2013.

We believe that New York City’s voters will select a Republican candidate as they have done since 1993.  City voters will not want to return New York to the pre-1993 dark days of rampant crime, corruption, incompetence and special interest politics. 

New Yorkers recognize the need for fiscal responsibility in the Mayor’s Office. The Republican Party’s leadership and membership throughout the five boroughs is committed to providing New Yorkers with a candidate who will be responsive to the issues affecting the middle class, homeowners, small businesses, those on fixed incomes and the unemployed.

New Yorkers remember Mayor Rudy Giuliani establishing that Republican management works and they appreciate that Republican endorsed Mayor Michael Bloomberg has continued that legacy. City voters want to keep New York going and going strong and that is going to take Republican leadership.”

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Permanent link to this article: http://queens-politics.com/2012/01/gop-swings-back-at-bloomberg-ragusa-take-all-karate-chop/

Nov 22 2011

They Laughed When I Sat Down at The Piano – But When I Started to Play!

Tom Allon is running for Mayor to keep the city out of the hands of career politicians.

A grassroots candidate is running for Mayor of New York City and he’s bringing in an attention-grabbing set of qualifications to become Bloomberg’s successor.

Tom Allon is a journalist and a former educator that has high aspirations for city government.

While the race for mayor is two years away, Allon is off to a running start. He’s already released his first campaign ad on television and he recently held his first fundraiser at the Empire State Ballroom. Tom is beginning to attract serious media attention because he is very knowledgeable on a host of issues that affect New Yorkers on a small town, community level. When you talk to him, you’ll quickly  understand.

Tom grew up on the West Side of Manhattan, near Riverside Drive and received a Bachelors degree in History from Cornell University. While his studies did not have a focus on public policy, he is a passionate writer that has traversed the journalistic landscape as a reporter, an editor, and a publisher. He believes his experience will bring a pragmatic approach to public policy making.

Presently, Tom is the CEO of Manhattan Media, which publishes lifestyle magazines such as Avenue and New York Family and community newspapers including City Hall and the Capital. He has also served as the Executive Vice-President of News Communications, the parent company of the Queens Tribune.

Tom is running as a pro-choice Democrat in a crowded primary. While he’s not exactly the new kid on the block of civic activists, as of November 22 he’s raised zero dollars in his campaign finance account. In comparison, Christine Quinn who is widely expected to run for Mayor – but has not yet declared – is sitting on a $4.5 million dollar campaign war chest.

Why is Tom running for Mayor?

“I believe that this city needs new direction for education policy and I think my skills are necessary to get the economy back on track,” said Tom who described his run as an effort “to keep the city out of the hands of career politicians.”

Tom Allon, the education candidate.

Despite the odds, Tom is confident he’s got the makings of the next Mayor of New York City.

Tom has held leadership positions in a pastiche of organizations, boards and committees. He has served as President of the New York Press Association, a member of the board of directors for Symphony Space (a performing arts center in Manhattan), as well as the West Side Crime Prevention Program, the  Broadway Mall Association, and he is very proud of  his accomplishments as a member of the Steering Committee to create two schools, Eleanor Roosevelt High School and Frank McCourt High School, both are located in Manhattan.

Tom believes that community boards should have final decision-making authority in land-use decisions. He wants to see an overhaul of the vetting process for choosing Community Board members that are appointed by the City Council Member and the Borough President, a process he feels is corrupt.

“I think the Community Board should be more transparent and democratic – I’m not so sure Council Members and the Beep should pick Community Board members, we don’t have enough participation as it is,” he said.

Tom believes the selection process, hearings, and votes lack transparency  - even though they are public record and are available online or upon request. “If it weren’t for community papers these issues wouldn’t get covered,” he lamented, adding, “whether through city or private funds, we must publicize the discussions of community boards so that people know what’s going on.”

On his Facebook page, Tom advocated to raise a new class of astute volunteers that can help parents navigate public school resources.

“Parenting coaches should be available free of charge at all public, parochial and private schools in the city,” said Tom.

He’d like to see the city start a Parents Corps (he draws a comparison to the Peace Corps) which he said would be comprised of “highly qualified and carefully screened volunteers who can help New York City’s millions of parents negotiate our flawed and complicated education system.”

Pundits are tossing pessimistic barbs back and forth, but I doubt they’ve had a chance to hear Tom make a strong case for the mayorship. -QP

Tom Allon on Inside City Hall.

Mr. Allon has a well-rounded grasp of education and quality of life issues because he is an average Joe New Yorker. He wasn’t born with a silver spoon in his mouth. He takes the bus and subway to work every morning and he enjoys riding his bicycle around town.

His political role models – past and present – are Governor Andrew Cuomo, “but he’s only been in office for a year, it’s too early to tell yet,” he said, and Franklin Delano Roosevelt, the 32nd President.

Tom’s family is not politically connected. In an effort to level the media playing field,  Tom sent a memo to City Hall reporters informing them that he will recuse himself from publication during his campaign and told his writers not to fear any repercussions for a harsh critique of his candidacy, he promised.

Asked how he felt about the growing 99% Movement, Tom praised the group’s ability to “raise the consciousness and the inequities in the finance and banking system.” Tom even spent the night sleeping over at Zuccotti Park, but he believed the OWS protest in front of Bloomberg’s home on the West Side was in bad taste.

“It’s a bit misguided to go in front of somebody’s home but democracy protects us,” according to Allon who added,  “If you run for public office, you must be prepared for this, although, I’m not so sure he was home.”

Stay tuned to Queens-Politics.com for the latest updates on Tom Allon.

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Permanent link to this article: http://queens-politics.com/2011/11/tom-allon-mayor/

Nov 14 2011

Mayor Bloomberg Sees Poverty Rate Increase across NYC

Photo by Spencer Tucker, New York City Mayor’s Office Mayor Michael Bloomberg celebrated the work of his Center for Economic Opportunity in 2007, but in the years since poverty in New York has increased.

1 in 5 New Yorkers living below the poverty level.

From The Gotham Gazette: New figures confirm that poverty is increasing in New York City. 


What is the city’s response? Budget cuts. Less than two weeks after 
the U.S. Census Bureau reported that the city’s poverty rate jumped to 
20.1 percent in calendar year 2010, Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s budget 
director demanded that all city agencies, including education and uniformed 
services, immediately plan to cut 2 percent for the remaining eight months of this fiscal year and 6 percent next year.

Yet a series of reports make it clear that even without the latest round of cuts, poverty agencies — facing rising need and falling resources — 
cannot maintain services.
 In fact, the Mayor’s Management Report for fiscal year 2011, released in mid-September and not generally known for highlighting 
bad news is 
full of bad news. A companion report from the mayor’s Office of 
Contract Services and a new Independent Budget Office fiscal brief on children’s servicesprovide further evidence that the agencies can’t meet their stated goals.

But the mayor in his own press release for the management report ignored all that saying simply: “The data show that city agencies continue to provide the high-quality services that New Yorkers have rightly come to expect.”h

For Full Article: http://www.gothamgazette.com/article/Public%20Finance/20111111/8/3635

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Permanent link to this article: http://queens-politics.com/2011/11/mayor-bloomberg-sees-poverty-rate-increase-across-nyc/

Nov 04 2011

Liz Crowley, American Patriot

City Council Member Liz Crowley (D-Middle Village) has come under fire for co-sponsoring a bill that will cut funding for a program that turns the NYC DOC into a flock of stool pigeons for the Federal Government.

City Councilwoman Liz Crowley (D-Middle Village) has co-sponsored legislation to stop the Department of Corrections from snitching on immigrant detainees to the Feds.

Old enemies are up in arms.

The bill, Intro 656 will stop funding from the City that supports Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) efforts to detain immigrants who have been cleared of their crimes and have no previous criminal background, according to a report in the Times Ledger.

If a person sent to Rikers is found to be an illegal immigrant, the city squeals to ICE under an agreement called the Criminal Alien Program. If you are not a criminal, they still squeal, and you will sit in a jail cell awaiting deportation. Intro 656 will cut the city’s funding for the program that has turned Rikers Island into an unorthodox Customs detention center.

These people are not a national security threat.

 

In a City long known to protect the immigrant community and in a heavily Democratic City Council, I doubt the theatrics of a jingoist civic prez  who takes on the air of a klansperson and a few Council Members, one known to support Liz Crowley’s formal rival, Tom Ognibene will have any effect, if at all on the outcome.

As of Wednesday, Nov. 3rd, it didn’t. The Bill was approved by the Council 43:5 and now sits on the Mayors desk awaiting his signature.

“What they are doing at Rikers is running an alien program rather than a criminal alien program,” said Daniel Dromm, Chair of the NYC Council’s Committee on Immigrant Affairs. “Many innocent immigrants are unfairly being detained and deported because of this broken immigration system. We cannot allow the cooperation between ICE and the DOC to continue tearing families apart and destabilizing immigrant communities that pose no threat to public safety.”

Chairman of Public Safety, Councilman Peter Vallone (D-Astoria) raised an interesting point in opposition to Intro 656. He is the only opponent to use legal reasoning  rather than an appeal to notions of xenophobia.

“The City Council is ignoring federal law and claiming that people illegally in this country who are arrested for a crime are somehow required to already have been convicted of yet another crime before we even cooperate with federal authorities. As a former prosecutor, I can tell you that many dangerous criminals who have recently snuck into our country have no criminal record. This policy will only succeed in making our streets more dangerous,” said Vallone in a report appearing in the Forum.

On the national level the proposed legislation appears to be in sync with White House policy and with immigration officials who said they will exercise “prosecutorial discretion.” This means authorities will evaluate charges  on a case-by-case basis to concentrate enforcement efforts on criminal cases and people who have flagrantly violated immigration laws, according to a report in the New York Times.

Despite a sprinkle of opposition, Intro 656, was supported by a majority of Council Members including Daniel Dromm (D-Jackson Heights), Karen Koslowitz (D-Forest Hills), Ruben Wills (D-Richmond Hills), Speaker Christine Quinn (D-Chelsea), and 36 other Council Members. Even Peter Koo (R-Flushing) and Dan Halloran (R-Whitestone) voted in the affirmative.

Vincent Ignizio, Vincent Gentile, James Oddo, Peter Vallone, and Eric Ulrich voted NO.

“We need to stop needlessly and excessively deporting people who have had no prior criminal records, said Speaker Quinn. “Since our bill was introduced we’ve had productive discussions with the Bloomberg administration.  We are pleased that they’ve agreed to support our legislation that will reduce unjust deportations. This is an important victory for all New Yorkers particularly our City’s immigrant community,” said Quinn.

Write to the Mayor. Tell him you support this bill.

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Permanent link to this article: http://queens-politics.com/2011/11/liz-crowley-defender-of/

Oct 14 2011

Update On The Trial (s) of John Haggerty, GOP Operative

Political operative John Haggerty leaves Manhattan Supreme Court. A campaign committee run by Haggerty is three months late in filing its disclosure statement to the state Board of Elections. AP Photo/Seth Wenig

From Queens Campaigner.

Haggerty Group Under Fire

By Howard Koplowitz

Oct 13th, 2011

A campaign committee controlled by Queens Republican political operative John Haggerty, who is on trial for allegedly stealing $1.1 million of Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s money, is three months late in filing its disclosure report with the state Board of Elections, a BOE spokesman said Tuesday.

Haggerty, a Forest Hills resident, started the 28th Assembly District Republican Committee in October 2009 with a $20 deposit, according to campaign finance records.

In November 2009, about three weeks after he was elected to a third term, Bloomberg wired $120,000 to the committee, records showed.

Campaign committees are required to file their disclosure reports every six months with the BOE.

The last filing for the 28th Assembly District Republican Committee was made in January. It has yet to report its July disclosures.

Haggerty attorney Dennis Vacco could not be reached for comment.

For Full Article: http://www.queenscampaigner.com/2011/10/haggerty-group-under-fire/john-haggerty/

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*Bart Haggerty is Chief of Staff For Council Member Eric Ulrich (R-Rockaways).

Permanent link to this article: http://queens-politics.com/2011/10/haggerty-in-over-his-head/


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