Any form of professional punishment is never good news, but all things considered, Kizzy Adonis got off so easy she’s a winner in this case. The NYPD sergeant, who had overseen the fatal arrest of Eric Garner in 2014, faced an administrative trial, while her underlying, Daniel Pantaleo, was fired for his role in the deadly encounter. But Adonis managed to keep her job and even avoided a trial – without admitting culpability. All she had to do in the end was to give up 20 vacation days. Apart from the damage to her reputation, Adonis got off scot-free.
This week’s biggest Winners & Losers
This week’s biggest Winners & Losers
Gov. Andrew Cuomo – a self-described sausage aficionado – isn’t above picking favorites when it comes to spiced meat cylinders. He’s had a Syracuse-made Gianelli Sausage every year at the Great New York State Fair, irking some other meat-slingers.
Cuomo’s political rival, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, picked a clear food favorite this week too, vowing to “do anything” to bail out tax-cheating Di Fara Pizza. We at City & State never pick favorites. Just winners and losers.
It took months since Gov. Andrew Cuomo said he would do it, but pre-audit authority over certain state contracts has finally been restored to state Comptroller Tom DiNapoli, something that was stripped away years ago. After budget language that would return the powers was removed, the Cuomo administration said it had returned the power in practice, just not in statute. But DiNapoli’s office disputed that claim. If only Cuomo had let the comptroller stay in comptrol all along, we might have avoided that whole Buffalo Billion scandal.
Ever wonder what a floating Times Square would look like? Thanks to a bill signed into law by Gov. Andrew Cuomo this week, the Hudson and East rivers will no longer serve as examples. State Sen. Brad Hoylman and Assemblyman Richard Gottfried captained a push to ban digital floating billboards that have been bobbing in the city’s waterways since last fall. With Cuomo’s signature of their bill, it looks like most – if not all – of these buoyant billboards have been sunk.
Mount Vernon finally has a mayor ... for now. Between the town's criminal mayor, its city council president and the city council president the body appointed to supplant the first council president as acting mayor, the debate finally ended with a state judge's ruling. The verdict: Andre Wallace, city council president No. 1, will now serve in the highly-coveted seat for a whopping four and a half months. Victory!
The Schenectady native is making a strong case that he is the New York candidate best positioned to take on President Donald Trump in 2020. Whether it’s his push for universal basic income or his stance against circumcision, something about the geeky entrepreneur is resonating – with at least 3% of Democratic primary voters. That’s roughly three times the support that either New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio and Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand are getting. If they don’t like that, then they should take it up with the Yang Gang!
The revered pizza-maker owes the state some serious dough. State tax authorities seized control of the restaurant this week over an outstanding tax bill of $167,000. Pizza lovers across the borough groaned in disappointment, and Mayor Bill de Blasio said the city should step in – but Gov. Andrew Cuomo has no stomach for a pizza bailout. A payment plan is nonetheless in the works, allowing the beloved pizzeria to reopen. But even at $5 per slice, DeMarco will need to sell tens of thousands more to get on the right side of Uncle Andrew.
New York City is looking like Zombieland with two campaigns caught rising from the dead. Staten Island District Attorney Michael McMahon was hungry for braaaaains – or eggs – and Gothamist found him spending money from his failed 2010 congressional campaign on St. Paddy’s Day political breakfasts, among other things, years after leaving office. And instead of ambling around, former Assemblyman Dov Hikind has been caught using cash from past campaigns to pay for his car, meals and trips to Germany and Texas.
Cohoes Mayor Shawn Morse was officially removed from office after pleading guilty to one count of wire fraud for using campaign funds for personal expenses, marking a premature departure after losing the June primary for his seat. Adding insult to injury, Cohoes is wasting no time in wiping traces of Morse’s tenure from his office – even changing the locks to make room for acting Mayor Christopher Briggs. As one local legislator put it, “You can either be the mayor or you can be a felon. You can't be both.”
It just took five years, but the NYPD finally figured out what to do with the officer who killed Eric Garner. In a decision that the police commissioner called “difficult," he fired Daniel Pantaleo and stripped most of his pension benefits. Still, it's not like Pantaleo doesn't still have his supporters. A GoFundMe raised more than $100,000 for the controversial officer, while the police union has his back.
Not so long ago the Brooklyn party boss was living large: He helped install a council speaker, the mayor was grateful, and he was a welcome change from the reign of his Vito Lopez, his scandal-plagued predecessor. Lately, however, he’s been playing second fiddle to Queens and the Bronx, and this week the Daily News reported that he owes some $2.2 million to a restaurant chain while the county organization he runs has “deteriorating finances.” Two local lawmakers promptly called for greater scrutiny of party spending – just the kind of disloyalty Seddio loathes.