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Three men in suits, including former acting prison commissioner Anthony Annucci and acting prison commissioner Daniel Martuscello III, stand at a memorial ceremony in Albany.
Hochul Quietly Nominates a Permanent Prison Chief

The Senate will consider Daniel Martuscello III’s bid to run New York’s prison and parole agency. His supporters point to his decades of experience. His opponents say that’s the problem.

Chris Gelardi   ·   May 22, 2024
Joe Biden talking with reporters in 1994
After Weinstein Decision, Democrats Push Sexual Assault Measure Biden and Schumer Once Fought

After New York’s top court overturned Harvey Weinstein’s conviction, state lawmakers want to let prosecutors bring evidence from past uncharged sexual assaults.

Julia Rock   ·   May 18, 2024
Sarahana Shrestha holding a sign that says "Public Power Now"
Public Power Push Spreads to the Hudson Valley

State lawmakers are set to introduce a sweeping proposal for a public takeover of Central Hudson, the region’s scandal-plagued gas and electric utility.

Colin Kinniburgh   ·   May 16, 2024
An illustration of a McDonalds sign above the New York State Capitol
McDonald’s Franchise Owners Fight Wage Theft Crackdown

New Yorkers for Local Businesses has spent half a million dollars trying to kill a bill to help workers recover stolen wages. Almost all its backers appear to own McDonald’s franchises.

Julia Rock   ·   May 9, 2024
The New York State Department of Labor office in Brooklyn, New York.
New York’s Labor Department Wants Your Unemployment Benefits Back

In New York, unemployment recipients can be found guilty of fraud even if they thought their information was true. The state demands repayment at the highest rate in the country.

Maxwell Parrott   ·   May 9, 2024
Governor Kathy Hochul at Planned Parenthood rally
Judge Strikes Abortion Referendum From November Ballot

New York’s Equal Rights Amendment would enshrine the right to abortion in the state. A judge threw it off the ballot for the fall, but an appeal is expected.

Chris Bragg and Rachel Holliday Smith   ·   May 7, 2024
A man at a white voting booth with an american flag and a New York City insignia on it.
State Campaigns Are About to Rake in Public Dollars — and Spend All the Private Money They Want

While New York City’s public campaign finance system endures scandals, the state won’t audit the majority of campaigns.

Alyssa Katz   ·   May 1, 2024
New York Governor Kathy Hochul speaks in front of a blue and yellow banner that reads  District Attorneys Association of the State of New York.
Three-Year-Old Commission Hochul Tapped for Rochester DA Traffic Stop Has Never Taken a Case

After DA Sandra Doorley berated a police officer, Hochul referred her to a commission that is yet to become active — and lacks the authority to issue discipline.

Chris Gelardi   ·   April 30, 2024
Your One-Stop Guide to the 2024 New York State Budget

A version of good cause eviction and new hate crimes are in; new taxes on the wealthy and education cuts are out. Here’s where things landed in this year’s budget.

New York Focus   ·   April 20, 2024
Carl Heastie in front of gas pipelines
Assembly Spikes Biggest Climate Proposal in New York Budget

The Assembly rejected legislation that would have sped up New York’s transition away from gas.

Julia Rock and Colin Kinniburgh   ·   April 19, 2024
Workers set up barriers on a street in New York City.
Last-Minute Budget Change Could Weaken Workers’ Claims to Weekly Pay

Low-wage manual laborers can sue to make their bosses pay them weekly. Hochul’s late-breaking budget addition may undermine that right.

Chris Bragg   ·   April 18, 2024
Charged With Regulating Conflict of Interests, Ethics Commission Hid Its Own

New York’s transparency watchdog found that the ethics commission violated open records law by redacting its own recusal forms.

Chris Bragg   ·   April 17, 2024
New York Governor Kathy Hochul stands at a blue and yellow podium that says "Consumer Protection & Affordability / 2024 State of the State."
How the State Budget Could Crack Down on Bad Business Practices

New York has one of the weakest consumer protection laws in the country. This year’s state budget may change that.

Sam Mellins   ·   April 16, 2024
Governor Kathy Hochul of New York stands behind a podium with a Buffalo Bills logo and her arms spread wide.
Politicians’ Rush for Bills Box Meets Little Ethics Defense

Guidelines limiting gifts of taxpayer resources have “no teeth whatsoever,” according to good government watchdog.

Chris Bragg   ·   April 4, 2024
House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, Democrats of New York, smile in front of american flags
As State Police Expand Surveillance, Privacy Advocates Turn to US Congress

Local regulations haven’t kept up with the rollout of new surveillance tech. Some reformers see Washington as their best hope.

Chris Gelardi   ·   April 2, 2024
A blue car suspended on a post against a blue sky with a sign below reading "PATRIOT AUTO SALES: LETS DEAL TODAY"
Looming Change to Repair Costs Drives Auto Industry Fight

As the state legislature considers a bill to change warranty payments, unions join their bosses to make car companies pay more.

Chris Bragg and Julia Rock   ·   March 29, 2024
Governor Kathy Hochul, Representative Jerrod Nadler, and others march in the June 4, 2023 Israel Day Parade in New York City.
New PAC Launches to Boost Pro-Israel Democrats in New York

Backing primary opponents to progressive Democrats, the new Solidarity PAC resembles a state-level analog to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee.

Julia Rock and Chris Gelardi   ·   March 26, 2024
New York State Assembly speaker Carl Heastie stands in front of a tile wall with TV microphones.
Lobbyist Dating Carl Heastie Cleared to Return to Assembly — and Ethics Attorney Quits

As the relationship was coming to light, Heastie returned $5,000 in campaign cash to a labor group from which he’d recused himself.

Chris Bragg   ·   March 26, 2024
New York City Police Department members stand in a line wearing NYPD baseball caps.
New Bill Would Stop Cops From Citing Debunked ‘Excited Delirium’ Syndrome

Referencing a New York Focus story, Assemblymember Jessica González-Rojas introduced legislation to prevent public agencies from naming the medically discredited condition in their reports.

Chris Gelardi   ·   March 19, 2024
New York Governor Kathy Hochul at a podium next to her budget director, Blake Washington, with a binder, both superimposed over a photo of two stacks of paper files.
Your Guide to the 2024 State Budget Fight

We read the governor’s, Senate’s, and Assembly’s budget proposals — so you don’t have to.

New York Focus   ·   March 15, 2024
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