Spin Cycle

News, views and commentary on Long Island, state and national politics

Water Authority chairman announces a run for Suffolk comptroller

Suffolk Water Authority chairman James Gaughran is running

(Credit: scwa.com)

Suffolk County Water Authority chairman James Gaughran, a Democrat, announced his candidacy for county comptroller Wednesday in front of a hometown audience in Northport, where he promised to use his government experience to keep costs down and act as a fiscal watchdog.

Later, in an interview, he expressed confidence the next county comptroller will be allowed to serve a full four-year term,...

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Intrigue over 'special' WFP probe plays out before top court

Judge Eugene Piggott questioned the secrecy of the

(Credit: NYS Office of Court Administration)

One of the more ear-perking moments in Tuesday’s state Court of Appeals arguments over designation in 2012 of a special prosecutor, purportedly to probe the Working Families Party, came when Judge Eugene Piggott asked why facts behind the assignment needed to be kept secret.

“I mean this is the United States of America, for goodness sake, it’s not the FISA court,” Piggott said, “and we have...

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NIFA likely to move forward on new union deals

State Senate approval of new speed cameras for Long Island makes it more likely that Nassau’s financial control board on Friday will lift a three-year wage freeze on county employees.

County officials have said that revenue raised from the cameras, intended to fine speeders in school zones, would help pay for new amended contracts for county union employees.

With the senate's vote, “that...

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Updated -- New Yorkers to HUD: Don't give away Sandy aid. HUD: We already have

Asked about the New Yorkers' plea, HUD noted that it already had granted $1 billion of the Sandy aid money to other states -- for tornadoes in Joplin, Mo., and mudslides in Colorado, for example. And no lawmakers had taken issue.

The Sandy aid package, after sequestration, included $15.2 billion in community development block grant funds. Of that amount, $10.5 billion has...

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How LI lawmakers voted on school-zone speed cameras

Here’s how Long Island state legislators voted on a bill to install 125 school-zone speed cameras on the Island. Though some touted safety, others called it a money grab -- estimated revenue from tickets is a key part of Nassau County’s financial plans.


SenateNassauKemp Hannon (R-Garden City) …Y.Carl Marcellino (R-Syosset) …Y.Jack Martins (R-Mineola) …Y.Dean Skelos (R-Rockville...

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Bharara seeks records from NY ethics commission

U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara is seeking records from the state ethics commission.

Bharara four weeks ago said his office would take up investigations that were launched and then shuttered by a panel appointed by Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo. That panel, known as the Moreland Commission, already had agreed to turn over its documents to Bharara.

But the prosecutor now has subpoenaed records from...

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Gillibrand thanks role models: grandmom, mom and Hillary

In the New York City gala last night for Time Magazine's Influential People of 2014, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) thanked the three most influential women in her own life: her grandmother, her mother and Hillary Clinton.

Standing by her table, Gillibrand appears composed but trips over a a few lines in her brief but gracious remarks and a toast that ends with "not one of us gets...

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NY Senate approves speed cameras as Nassau finances hang in balance

With Nassau County’s financial plan hinging on it, the State Senate approved a bill Wednesday to allow up to 125 school-zone speed cameras on Long Island.

Senate officials hadn’t planned on taking up the bill this week. But with an important Nassau deadline looming, the Senate changed plans. The chamber easily passed the bill, 49-11. Among Long Island senators, Sen. John Flanagan (R-East Northport),...

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Defining debate over NY school mandates runs through LI

As political parties prepare to nominate statewide candidates in the coming weeks, the most dramatic issue debate involves the schools.

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo's greeting in Suffolk Monday by an estimated 2,000-plus demonstrators -- many of them teachers and parents -- marks one noisy and early sign of this. Anthony Felicio, president of the Connetquot Teachers Association, who led the rally,...

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Legis. Schneiderman mulls run for Suffolk comptroller

Suffolk Legis. Jay Schneiderman, seen May 20, 2013,

(Credit: James Escher)

Suffolk Legis. Jay Schneiderman said Tuesday he's considering running for county comptroller and has had talks with County Executive Steve Bellone.

"I think I'd make a good comptroller," said Schneiderman, an Independence Party member from Montauk. "I'm a numbers guy."

Suffolk Water Authority chairman James Gaughran, a former county legislator, has already announced...

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