Hochul Nominates Liberal Chief Judge + Delays Budget With Threats Over Bail and Discovery Reform
No. 318 | Monday, April 17, 2023
The NYC Thorn is a weekly roundup of local political news compiled by members of NYC-DSA.
Governor Kathy Hochul nominated Court of Appeals judge Rowan Wilson to replace Janet DiFiore as Chief Judge. Wilson is a member of the court's liberal wing, and his nomination is not expected to face the resistance that Hector LaSalle's did earlier this year. To fill the new vacancy created by Wilson's elevation, Gov. Hochul will nominate Caitlin Halligan, a private attorney and the State's former Solicitor General, whose record is less clear.
As the New York State budget remains delayed, largely over a stalemate on the Governor's proposal to further roll back the 2019 bail reforms, Gov. Hochul is now proposing changes to the discovery reform passed that same year, alarming public defenders in the state. The push for those changes is reportedly coming from Bronx District Attorney Darcel Clark.
Another holdup in the budget negotiations is the Governor's refusal to take up Good Cause Eviction, while pushing her own Housing Compact plan to increase housing supply.
Gov. Hochul’s acting budget director stepped down under mysterious circumstances in March, and her exit has triggered an investigation into potential improprieties regarding emergency no-bid COVID-19 contracts that she may have influenced.
Plans by the Governor to raise tuition at CUNY, along with Mayor Eric Adams' plan to cut City funding for CUNY, are alarming students, faculty, and elected officials.
An analysis by the Rent Guidelines Board revealed that over half of tenants in rent-stabilized apartments are still "rent-burdened," meaning they pay at least a third of their income in rent.
Nonprofit legal services organizations that represent tenants in eviction cases as part of the City’s Right to Counsel law are asking the City to quadruple their budget, as they say they cannot keep up with the pace of eviction cases.
The Rutgers University faculty unions have called off a strike after winning major concessions in a tentative agreement.
Assembly Member Juan Ardila (District 37, Western Queens) has been excluded from budget negotiations and has apparently lost the credibility of his colleagues since being publicly accused of sexual assault.
Michael Ragusa, a Republican running in a competitive primary this June for City Council District 47 (Southern Brooklyn), dropped out after his campaign was accused of forging petition signatures. The winner of the Republican primary will face incumbent Justin Brannan in November.
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