Spin Cycle

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

Mangano: Friday meeting on replacing speed camera revenue

  Nassau County Executive Edward Mangano and county legislative leaders will meet Friday to discuss how to fill a budget gap after the demise of the unpopular school-zone speed camera program.

  “I will be meeting tomorrow with the legislative leaders to discuss the ideas that we provided them,” Mangano said Thursday in Albany while attending the state’s annual economic development...

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Suffolk to get new area code in 2016; only new numbers impacted

Suffolk County will be getting a new telephone area code in 2016.

The state Public Service Commission, which regulates utilities, approved a plan Thursday to implement a new area code for Suffolk telephone numbers beginning in the third quarter of 2016.

The PSC said the 631 area code will run out of available numbers by then, sparking the need for an additional code. The panel didn’t...

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Assembly Speaker Silver says he has his own private law practice

New York State Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver attends

(Credit: Newsday / J. Conrad Williams Jr.)

ALBANY — Powerful Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver on Thursday said he’s running his own private law practice as part of his outside income that totaled as much as $750,000 in 2013.

Silver has long reported his outside income for working for the law firm of Weitz & Luxenberg in Manhattan. His state ethics disclosures forms noted he received $650,000 to $750,000 in 2013 in total outside...

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Legislative pay raise, infrastructure could be on agenda in special session, Skelos and Silver say

Two top lawmakers said Thursday that talks are ongoing for a special session of the State Legislature before New Year’s Day that could include a possible pay raise for lawmakers and a host of unrelated issues, including divvying up a financial windfall for infrastructure projects.

Senate co-leader Dean Skelos (R-Rockville Centre) and Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver (D-Manhattan) also said,...

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Cuomo meets with Jay Z, talks criminal justice reforms

Gov. Andrew M Cuomo meets with Jay Z

(Credit: Office of the Governor / Daniel Barry)

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo met with hip-hop mogul Jay Z on Wednesday to discuss the criminal justice system, a week after a Staten Island jury chose not to indict a police officer in the choking death of Eric Garner.

A Cuomo aide said the governor also has met with another hip hop and clothing magnate Russell Simmons and other black and Hispanic leaders in recent days. Garner's last words -- "I...

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State education commissioner tested by Common Core to leave NY

New York State Education Commissioner Dr. John King,

(Credit: Danielle Finkelstein)

State Education Commissioner John B. King Jr., who led New York's public schools to higher academic standards and fought political pressure against implementing the national Common Core curriculum, is leaving the job.

King, 39, has accepted a post with the U.S. Department of Education, serving as senior adviser to U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan.

"I'm humbled and honored to have...

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Higher TAP, college aid for unauthorized migrants pushed in Albany

ALBANY _ Students and higher education advocates on Wednesday started the drive to update the Tuition Assistance Program and adopt a Dream Act in the coming legislative session.

The advocates said a Dream Act to provide financial aid including TAP to unauthorized migrants brought here as children is essential along with changes to TAP for all students struggling with lower and moderate incomes.


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Senate Dems seek permanent prosecutor for fatal cop confrontations

ALBANY -- The Senate’s Democratic conference using personal accounts of mistrust of police in African-American communities has called for a permanent, full-time prosecutor to investigate fatal confrontations like the one that ended Eric Garner’s life.

“You can’t have a system investigating itself,” said Sen. James Sanders Jr. (D-Queens). “There is something wrong and the battle is for a better...

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Faculty union unveils student loan forgiveness, refinancing proposals

To decrease college students’ debt, a state university union proposed Tuesday that the state allow students to refinance loans and begin a loan-forgiveness program for adjunct professors. 

United University Professions, which represents faculty and other professionals in the State University of New York system, said lowering student debt is essential to keeping higher education affordable.


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AG seeks power to probe civilian deaths in cop confrontations (Update)

New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman has asked

(Credit: AP)

ALBANY -- Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo may provide state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman temporary authority to investigate fatal confrontations between police and civilians until broad changes in criminal justice procedure occur, administration officials said.

"The law is broken. It has to be fixed," Schneiderman said Monday. "You have recognize the loss of confidence in the process."


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Which was the most fevered lunge for self-promotion by a power player?

Hollywood actor and director Danny Glover urging New York City to keep horse carriages. Actress Edie Falco making a TV ad to abolish horse carriages. Ex-Sony exec Mitch Singer, last week: “Why do so many believe that this is Sony’s war to fight?"

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