Karen DeWitt

Office of New York Governor Andrew Cuomo

Once the President’s week break is finished, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and the legislature will have to start discussing the 2015 budget.  But the traditional style of budget making in New York, known as "three men in a room," is coming under criticism, by among others, the U.S. Attorney currently investigating corruption at the Capitol.  Some are wondering whether it’s time to end the secretive practice.

http://assembly.state.ny.us/mem/Joseph-D-Morelle/photos/

Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver will end his long reign as the head of the Assembly on Monday, say the Democratic members of the Assembly who announced they’ll hold a new election for Speaker on February 10th.

Assembly Democrats are planning to huddle behind closed doors again in Albany today, trying to decide their next move after they decided Monday that they no longer have confidence in their in their present Speaker Sheldon Silver.

The state capitol in Albany.
WAMC Photo by Dave Lucas

Three weeks after it was originally scheduled, today is New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s State of the State address. It was pushed back after the death of his father, former Governor Mario Cuomo, on New Year’s Day. The speech set for 1:30 in Albany is being combined with the governor’s annual budget message. WAMC’s Ian Pickus got a preview from Capitol Correspondent Karen DeWitt.

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, his democratic running mate Kathy Hochul and other women’s rights advocates spoke to a cheering crowd of union members and local elected officials, as part of a three city upstate bus tour to promote a 10 point women’s rights plan.

Governor Andrew Cuomo
Office of Gov. Andrew Cuomo

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo is reaching out to moderate Republicans to try to win over their vote in next month’s elections. His efforts have been bolstered by a new ad featuring Larry Rockefeller.

Blair Horner
C.W. McKeen / The Post - Standard, 2006

A member of a government reform group says it’s OK if New York Governor Andrew Cuomo uses his campaign coffers to finance this week’s trip to Israel if the visit is for political, rather than government purposes.

Blair Horner, with the New York Public Interest Research Group, says it’s preferable for Governor Cuomo to use funds from his $35 million  campaign fund to pay for his visit to Israel than for state taxpayers to foot the bill.  Horner says by using the campaign money, Cuomo is also signaling that the trip is more of a political event than official government business.

Wikipedia Commons

Government reform groups are split over whether an amendment on the November ballot to change the way legislative district lines are drawn is an improvement, or will make only make gerrymandering worse.

Times Union Website Crime Confidential Blog

For the first time in several years, New York has a surplus of $3-$4 billion. Governor Andrew Cuomo says he’s still looking at options on how best to use it.

The state has recently been the beneficiary of a windfall from major lawsuit settlements with several banks and insurance companies. After years of running a debt or breaking even, New York now has over $4 billion, says Governor Cuomo. Cuomo says he’s still thinking about the best use for the money.

Wikimedia Commons

The state board of elections approved the language for a ballot amendment that would change the way redistricting  is done in New York. But not everyone is happy with the wording, or the amendment.

The November ballot amendment would permit the Senate and the Assembly to appoint members to what the amendment describes as an “independent” commission to redraw legislative district lines every ten years, as required by the census.

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