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Cinderella stories are common in March, but what about in April? On April 24 the state’s political season kicks off with special elections from Long Island to Buffalo. There will be 11 potential upsets, with nine Assembly races and two in the state Senate. Most eyes are on the 37th Senate District because it’s viewed as a pivotal battleground for c…
 
The expectation in New York that public information should be available online is only a recent development in the online era. Ten years ago the landscape was radically different (and not just because Netflix dealt solely in DVDs), which is why the creation of See Through New York was a game changer. In its first year, the site published payroll in…
 
If you ever stumbled across a late night television advertisement promising cash – maybe with a catchy jingle – then you might have unwittingly heard the sales pitch from a lawsuit lender. Lawsuit lenders can act as third-party financiers of lawsuits with a simple pitch: Need cash while you wait for the resolution of a lawsuit? Then call an 800-num…
 
In anticipation of the upcoming LCA Show, I wrote a song for Brian Kolb that is no longer relevant. Instead of letting the song die, like his candidacy for governor, it’s being released into the world. You’re welcome. Now what rhymes with Giambra… Tweet The post EXTRA EXTRA – Brian Kolb’s Gubernatorial Show first appeared on Poozer Politics.…
 
For thousands of New Yorkers who find themselves unable to make critical life decisions, the state’s guardianship laws are designed to serve as a safety net of last resort to meet their needs. Reformed in 1992, the state’s overhaul of the Mental Hygiene Law was an attempt to move away from its benign paternalistic approach to guardianship. In theor…
 
If 1992 was the “Year of the Woman,” then 2018 has the potential to be the Year of Women. Since the first Women’s March, following the inauguration of President Donald Trump, there has been an obvious uptick in female participation in politics. More women are getting involved in political campaigns and there is the potential for a record of number …
 
Republican elected officials from Manhattan once walked the halls of the Capitol. The last of this dying breed was John Ravitz, who represented the Upper East Side in the Assembly between 1991 and 2002, when he lost a special election for state senate and walked away from public office. Ravitz joined Poozer Politics to talk about his upset victory …
 
The anti-incumbency wave that swept the country in 2010 also made its way through the 58th Senate District in New York that year and handed Jack Quinn III the first election loss of his family’s political career. The son of a congressman from the Buffalo area, he set out for a career in medicine before turning to law and eventually elected office. …
 
Gambling has exploded in New York during the last two decades, with the floodgates truly opening when the state approved electronic gaming at horse racing tracks. At the turn of the century your options for placing a bet were extremely limited in New York. Casinos could only be found on Indian reservations, the multi-state lottery was just a dream …
 
You would be forgiven for mistakenly thinking that the biggest state income tax cut in the last millennia occurred under Gov. Andrew Cuomo. Despite the governor’s rhetoric about an historic cut, the most recent major income tax overhaul in New York came in 1995 under Gov. George Pataki. The impetus for the Income Tax Reduction Act of 1995 came almo…
 
Selling energy could be even bigger business in New York, but whether those profits truly materialize could depend on a battle of acronyms in Albany. The state’s Public Service Commission is fighting on multiple fronts, including state and federal court, with the nearly 200 energy service companies that want to sell energy in New York. The crux of …
 
All politics is local, even if you’re a billionaire. Robert Mercer, the conservative financier behind Steve Bannon and then-candidate Donald Trump, waded into the Westchester County Executive election last month with nearly $1 million for a super PAC supporting incumbent Rob Astorino. Mark Lungariello Journal News reporter Mark Lungariello joined P…
 
Thirty years ago, New York overhauled its tax code in response to major reforms at the federal level. Now, with Republicans in Congress hoping to cut cut cut, is reform at the state and local level around the corner? What would reform in New York look like? Where is the low-hanging tax fruit? Do state politicians, especially Gov. Andrew Cuomo, have…
 
Do voters choose elected officials or do elected officials choose their voters? The answer is usually the latter, as redistricting has become an exact science with states legislators utilizing computer programs that allow them to tip the scales in elections. But now good government advocates have a metric for identifying partisan gerrymandering, th…
 
What can’t Google do? Well, at this time, it might not be the best source for election poll information, according to Dr. Don Levy, director of the Siena Research Institute. He joined Poozer Politics to talk about the benefits and challenges of online surveys, including the possibility of Facebook polls, and explored the generic ballot question, wh…
 
If at first you don’t succeed, maybe an Assembly seat will open up. Four years after an unsuccessful bid to be the Democratic nominee for an open-congressional seat in the Capital Region, Phil Steck was victorious in an effort to be his party’s representative in a race for the 110th Assembly District (Spoiler Alert: He still has that seat). For a b…
 
You don’t listen to this podcast and the story ends. You believe whatever you want to believe about the safety of your personal information with your bank or insurance company. You listen to this episode, you stay in Poozerland, and Josefa Velasquez explains everything about New York’s new cyber security regulations for financial institutions. The …
 
Everyone knows a Lannister always pays their debts and that Bruce Springsteen has debts that no honest man can pay, but how much do people know about New York’s debt and the state’s penchant for borrowing billions of dollars each year? E.J. McMahon, research director at the Empire Center for Public Policy, joined Poozer Politics to offer an introdu…
 
Don’t forget to turn over your ballot this November. The back has three referendums for voters, including a proposal to amend the state constitution’s “Forever Wild” clause. This amendment creates a land bank that is designed to preserve the unique nature of the Adirondacks and Catskills and meet the needs of the people who live in these protected …
 
Paid-family leave was adopted in New York last year with all the fanfare (and details) of a 2020 presidential launch, but now we’re in the nitty-gritty implementation phase and there are a lot of questions. Frank Kerbein, a member of the legislative affairs team for the Business Council of New York State, joined Poozer Politics to answer some of th…
 
It takes some research, a prepared word document and an unwavering attention span to live-tweet the state senate session in Albany. But that’s all in a day’s work for Tom Reale, the director of new media for the senate and the man behind @NYSenate. He joined Poozer Politics to talk about the mission of the senate’s Twitter account, the challenges o…
 
It was an extraordinary first session for Assemblymember Yuh-Line Niou. Niou joined Poozer Politics to reflect on her first year as a member of the Assembly and talked about the personal toll of the late budget, her approach to the legislative process and accomplishments for her constituents. She also explored the challenge of delegating power and …
 
Capitol Pressroom host Susan Arbetter took a break from asking questions to answer some for the Poozer Politics podcast. She shared insights into her interview process, including how she prepares for pivots and filibustering by politicians, and contrasted public and commercial radio. Susan also reflected on the challenge of questioning Gov. Andrew …
 
Welcome to a crash course on extraordinary sessions in Albany. StateWatch Guru Mike Poulopoulos, who has more than a decade of experience at the Capitol, explains how the governor calls these sessions, outlines possible responses from the legislature, and forecasts the potential agenda for the extraordinary session in 2017. He also shares horror st…
 
Living through legislative sessions in Albany can dull you to the experience. But what is it like for someone coming to the Capitol with fresh eyes? Courteney Kerin, a StateWatch intern for the 2017 session, answered that question and more on Poozer Politics. She offered tips for surviving marathon public hearings, shed new light on Assemblyman Mic…
 
Poozer Politics is going green this week with a recycled episode. Since the state legislature is on repeat – glossing over ethics, fighting over mayoral control and feverishly working late nights to finish on time – the podcast is following their lead and sharing clips from past episodes (but with a new introduction). The episode includes conversat…
 
Blink and you might have missed her in the Capitol. Anna Gronewold parachuted into the AP’s Albany Bureau as a legislative relief reporter for the start of this year’s legislative session and will soon depart for her next mission. She came on the podcast to talk about her experiences in the Nebraska and North Carolina statehouses, provided an outsi…
 
After nearly a decade manning the Times Union Capital Bureau Northern District, Casey Seiler’s tour of duty is over. (Photo by: John Carl D’Annibale / Times Union) The long-time state editor came on Poozer Politics to talk about his transition back to the mother ship in Colonie, where he will serve as a senior editor for news. The conversation touc…
 
A harbinger of future Democratic victories or an electoral anomaly? Those are the two conflicting viewpoints following a surprise win by a Bernie Sanders supporting candidate in a special election this week for an Assembly seat that went overwhelmingly for Donald Trump in 2016 and has traditionally been easily held by Republicans. Republican strate…
 
Calls for additional oversight in Albany aren’t new, but there is a new twist to the ongoing story. The latest scandal involves the Senate Majority Coalition’s practice of misidentifying the titles of certain senators in order to give them extra pay. Senate Democrats are alleging the actions are illegal and law enforcement has begun to review the i…
 
“Na na na na, na na na na, hey hey hey, goodbye.” After the vote to adopt the American Health Care Act, Congressional Democrats taunted their colleagues with that chant on the assumption that many of the Republican supporters had just jeopardized their jobs. But did they really risk re-election? “It’s too early to tell. It looks really bad right no…
 
Greg Floyd is not always a welcome sight in the Capitol. His presence, with microphone in hand, can cause the most seasoned political veterans to head the other way – especially if they’re guilty of misusing taxpayer money or violating the public trust. These (almost) encounters are a hallmark of Greg’s “You Paid for It” segments, which highlight g…
 
The state budget was bittersweet for New York families and children this year. “Raise the Age” was one of the sweetest parts and cuts to child care subsidies were a bitter pill to swallow, according to Dede Hill, the director of policy for the Schuyler Center. She came on the podcast to talk about both measures, including the practical changes of r…
 
Wielding the gavel during senate session in Albany can take a light touch or a firm hand. That balance is usually maintained by Senator Joe Griffo, who regularly serves as acting-president of the state senate. In this role on the dais it falls on him to keep the peace, crack the occasional joke, offer some scripture, and ensure they’re passing legi…
 
Ride-sharing services like Uber and Lyft will become legal in upstate New York this summer, but what will this actually mean for consumers? Andrew Hawkins, a transportation writer for The Verge, talked about some possible outcomes and explained how the 90-day rulemaking period will be critical in determining what takes shape north of the five borou…
 
There are many stories about passing the budget – this episode features some of the stories from 12 hours during one of those days. This show includes updates by reporters and members of the Assembly from Sunday, April 2, as the legislature worked to reach a budget agreement before the governor’s “grace period” ended. Their stories explain how they…
 
Mike Durant has been around the (budget) block before. As the state director of NFIB and a veteran of the Pataki administration, he understands how the games are played in Albany and offered some of his insights to Poozer Politics. Mike explained the budget process from A to Z and everything in between, including late media blitzes, staking out the…
 
David Friedfel is the director of state studies for the Citizens Budget Commission and a returning guest to Poozer Politics. He talked about what’s going on behind the scenes of the legislature’s joint budget committees, explained a controversial proposal from Governor Cuomo to take more control over the budget process and outlined his organization…
 
Bill Hammond thought he was out, but he got pulled back into Poozer Politics. For this emergency episode, Hammond provided analysis of a proposed amendment to the American Health Care Act (AHCA) that would shift the Medicaid burden in New York. He shed light on a version of this proposal from former-Gov. Mario Cuomo, provided background on Medicaid…
 
Longtime AP photographer Mike Groll spent a decade in the Capitol capturing the state government in action. He came on the podcast to talk about the challenge of making political photos interesting, detailed his start in journalism and reminisced about the time his mother drove him to an assignment. During his extensive and varied career he photogr…
 
Bill Hammond is the director of health policy for the Empire Center for Public Policy. He came on the show to talk about the impact of the American Health Care Act on New York, with a focus on shifting costs and changes in coverage. Bill also highlighted the challenges of implementing single-payer health insurance, benefits of “Obamacare” and a pot…
 
Joe Spector joined Poozer Politics host David Lombardo to explore his recent article, “How VLTs saved NY horse racing.” The conversation highlighted the financial arrangements that make harness and thoroughbred racing possible in New York and examined the future competition for gambling dollars across upstate. (more…) Tweet The post New York’s Hors…
 
James Gormley has been mentoring young generations of reporters at the Legislative Gazette since 2001. Under his leadership, aspiring journalists have crafted their first lede, covered the president and launched exciting careers. He spoke with Poozer Politics host David Lombardo, a 2009 Legislative Gazette alum, about the mission of the Legislative…
 
We live in exciting political times, but are they historic? To put our politics into perspective I turned to SUNY Geneseo Prof. Justin Behrend (Editor’s Note: He was my favorite college professor). Professor Behrend provided background on Frederick Douglass, who is getting recognized more and more, highlighted the role of political norms and talked…
 
New York Now host Matt Ryan came on the podcast to talk about making his documentary on former-Gov. Mario Cuomo, “Poetry and Prose,” and chatted about the role of the media in our evolving political landscape. The episode deals with interviewing Gov. Andrew Cuomo, the media’s responsibility to act as fact checkers and David Lombardo’s recent New Yo…
 
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