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Mayor Bill de Blasio: 'Respectful, honest relationship' with Melissa Mark-Viverito

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio speaks

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio speaks at a press conference on Saturday on December 22, 2014 in New York City. Credit: Getty Images / Andrew Burton

Mayor Bill de Blasio's relationships with Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo and City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito have been tested recently but Monday he categorized the tension as "apples and oranges" in an appearance alongside the speaker.

Mark-Viverito, in a rare rebuke of de Blasio on Thursday, criticized his administration for neglecting to give the City Council more credit in brokering a truce with Uber after initially threatening to cap the e-hail giant's growth.

Cuomo and de Blasio earlier this month feuded openly over what the mayor viewed as the governor's thwarting of New York City's agenda in Albany.

"Have you heard of the concept of apples and oranges?" de Blasio said Monday when asked to compare the feuds.

On Thursday, Mark-Viverito had said: "I'm not going to allow anyone to attempt to save face at the expense of this council." She added that de Blasio's statement then that a moratorium was on the table was "really not for him to decide."

Monday, she and the mayor had more diplomatic words for each other at a news conference at the American Museum of Natural History lauding the first six months for the IDNYC city-issued identification program.

"Effective government and effective governance is being able to collaborate and being able to be clear about your positions," Mark-Viverito said. She and de Blasio had a "good working relationship," in the best interest of the city, she said.

De Blasio said he and the speaker have worked "shoulder to shoulder" since they were voted into their positions.

"It's been a respectful, honest relationship," he said, acknowledging what Mark-Viverito indicated last week about the council's role. "The City Council makes their own decision ultimately about whether to engage any proposal."

The council had been poised to vote on two bills to launch a 14-month traffic study on the rapidly expanding Uber and similar services, while capping Uber's growth at 1 percent. Following an agreement announced by de Blasio's team, the council instead voted on a four-month study with the app-dispatched livery service permitted to expand at its current rate.

"The city government" came to the agreement, the mayor stressed Monday.

His partnership with Cuomo was a "very different reality based on different experiences," de Blasio said.

Asked whether he was invited to an Association for a Better New York-hosted luncheon later Monday afternoon in midtown Manhattan with Cuomo and Vice President Joe Biden, de Blasio said: "That's the kind of event that I go to when I'm speaking, but not obviously as an attendee."

Mark-Viverito attended the event with Cuomo.

He openly criticized Cuomo earlier this month, saying that those who wronged the governor were subjected to revenge or a "vendetta."

Cuomo had responded that de Blasio spoke out because he didn't get everything he wanted from the legislative session. The mayor needed to seek bipartisan compromise to get more of what he wanted, Cuomo said.

"Welcome to Albany," the governor said.

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