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POLITICO New York Playbook, presented by Nuclear Matters: DE BLASIO group setbacks -- DAILY NEWS ultimatum -- GATEWAY cost questions

11/13/2015 07:00 AM EDT

By Azi Paybarah in Manhattan, Jimmy Vielkind in Albany, and Mike Allen in D.C., with Daniel Lippman

PROGRESSIVE AGENDA, DISPUTED - "De Blasio's Advocacy Group Pursues Ambitious Agenda Despite Setbacks," by Times' Alex Burns and Michael M. Grynbaum: "The disintegration of the Iowa conclave was the most significant setback yet for the Progressive Agenda Committee, an ambitious but halting enterprise that has prompted questions about Mr. de Blasio's political judgment, and has tested his clout as a local official with baldly ideological aspirations. Mr. de Blasio and his allies say the group is a necessary vehicle to rally liberal elites behind a cohesive message. Inspired by a policy agenda that he unveiled in Washington in May, covering topics such as union rights and international trade, the Progressive Agenda Committee is now organized as a nonprofit, with its own executive director and political director. But the project, founded by Mr. de Blasio and backed by influential labor leaders and former City Hall aides, has faced a series of unexpected setbacks: Prominent elected officials have hesitated to commit themselves. Some leaders who endorsed his policy manifesto have had second thoughts about promoting such a grandly ideological document."

PAYING FOR GATEWAY - POLITICO New York's Dana Rubinstein and Ryan Hutchins: Now that the federal government and Amtrak have agreed to split the tab for a new cross-Hudson rail tunnel with New York and New Jersey, the next question is how the two states will split their half of the roughly $20 billion cost. "They haven't worked out between themselves if they each match each other, or New Jersey does more than New York, or vice versa," said U.S. Senator Chuck Schumer in a phone interview on Thursday. A spokesperson for New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo had no comment. In an email, a spokesman for New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie said it was too soon to say. But at least one transportation expert argued that it might make sense for New Jersey to foot more of the bill, given the relative benefit it derives from the project. "New Jersey is a significant beneficiary in the end," said Martin Robins, director emeritus of the Alan M. Voorhees Transportation Center at Rutgers University. "Our economy will falter if we don't get this."

OTHER STATES COULD FOLLOW SCHNEIDERMAN - POLITICO's Nick Gass: New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman predicts that other states will follow his lead in cracking down on the daily fantasy sports sites DraftKings and FanDuel, saying regulators in his state and in others are just catching up to the industry's explosive growth over the last several months. "They grew very, very quickly and I think that New York state regulators and a lot of other states weren't paying very much attention," Schneiderman said during a POLITICO New York Playbook discussion in Manhattan on Thursday. "And in the last six to eight months, they've really exploded and become multibillion-dollar businesses and drawn the scrutiny of regulators here and all across the country." Schneiderman sent cease-and-desist letters to both DraftKings and FanDuel on Tuesday, on the basis that under state law, both websites amount to gambling, which is prohibited save for exemptions for venues like the state-run lottery, horse racetracks and casinos. "There just is no exemption for daily fantasy sports gambling," Schneiderman told POLITICO's Mike Allen and POLITICO New York's Jimmy Vielkind.

-- Andrew Busa, Founder and CEO of FantasyHub, says Schneiderman has improperly targeted the daily fantasy industry while turning a blind eye to gambling and casino companies that line his pockets.

-- Rochester firm Star Fantasy Leagues expects to double staff despite cease-and-desist on other firms.

TABS -- Post: "JOLLY GOODFELLA: Mobster acquitted in Lufthansa heist" -- News: "WE HOPE YOU SUFFERED: Jihadi John killed by drone - U.S." -- Newsday: "Not Guilty Fella" -- amNY: "Not Guilty Fella: Vincent Asaro acquitted of charge he helped plan JFK Lufthansa heist" -- Epoch Times, weekend edition: "From Syria to Jersey City" -- Hamodia: "93rd Agudath Israel Convention Begins" -- El Diario [translated]: War smoke

FRONT PAGES -- NYT, 3-col. above the fold; "In Obama Era, Wide Republican Gains in States" and 1-col. above the fold: "Immigration Is Litmus Test in G.O.P. Race" -- WSJNY: "Justice Fires Back at Mayor de Blasio, Commissioner Bratton"

LOCAL -- Queens Chronicle, south: "HOOAH! Council OKs Department of Veterans Services" -- QC, northeast: "JUST SAY NO: Baysiders protest high school plan" -- QC, western: "UNINSURED IN QuEENS: Stringer finds Sunnyside, Jackson Heights and Corona lack health coverage the most" -- Press of Southeast Queens: "DON'T DISS OUR KIDS: Pol Decries Lack of Gifted And Talented Programs in SEQ -- Bay News: "MAKING HISTORY IN CONEY ISLAND: Harris is Cone's first black rep" and 'Special' school suddenly she shuttered" -- Brooklyn Courier: "Key panel approves library high-rise"

QUOTE OF THE DAY: "I would suggest that the mayor look into a mirror and ask himself whether or not it is his own policies he's in favor of, whether those policies make someone think they can shoot a cop, do not blame the judges." -- Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Patricia Nunez, via Post's Rebecca Rosenberg:

INTERVIEW OF THE DAY: Shaila Scott of 107.5 WBLS: "What food do you cook best?"

De Blasio: "Man. Scrambled eggs."

Shaila: "Favorite cologne?"

De Blasio: "Once, long ago, I don't use it anymore, but there uses to be one called Iquitos, but it was a long time ago."

Shaila: "Favorite R&B song."

De Blasio: "Oh, wow. Luther, 'Never Too Much.'"

Shaila: "And, finally, boxers or briefs?"

De Blasio: "Briefs. You know, that's classic."

Shaila: "You'll be happy to know that you and Mayor Bloomberg both wear briefs."


JUDGE RIPS DE BLASIO -- Says mayor, Bratton made her scapegoat -- Post's Rebecca Rosenberg: "The Manhattan judge who sent a career criminal to rehab instead of pushing for prison - leaving him free to murder an NYPD cop - ripped her detractors Thursday, telling Mayor Bill de Blasio to "look into a mirror" before blaming her for the tragedy. Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Patricia Nuñez blasted de Blasio and NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton for linking her to the slaying of Police Officer Randolph Holder.

"[Judge Patricia Nunez] then sentenced accused cop-killer Tyrone Howard to the maximum 12 years behind bars for making a mockery of the alternative court program that she allowed him to enter -- 'Yesterday, you received mercy. Today, you will receive justice,' she told Howard at his resentencing on a 2014 drug-peddling case. As for her adversaries, the combative jurist added, "Judges are forbidden from speaking to the public about cases pending before them except on record in court. 'I want to correct what was a false narrative in the press begun by the mayor of New York and his police commissioner, who made statements without checking the facts.'

NEW HIRE: Jason Ortiz has been hired to be the political director for the New York Hotel Trades Council, one of the city's most politically powerful and influential labor unions. He replaces Josh Gold, who now works for Uber. Ortiz, a Sunnyside, Queens resident, has a lengthy history in labor and elected politics. He was the deputy political director for HTC from 2008 to 2011 There, he helped manage field and campaign communications for new campaigns, including Andrew Cuomo's 2010 gubernatorial bid, and numerous New York City Council races the year before. From 2011 through 2013, he was director of special projects in the New York State Attorney General's office, where he worked with longtime collaborator Neal Kwatra. (The two worked together for more than a dozen years, starting back in Orlando, FL with HERE.) In 2013, Ortiz joined Metropolitical Public Strategies, the firm founded by Kwatra. At MPS, Ortiz helped manage field, communications, research, policy and strategy for candidates ranging from Cuomo's 2014 re-election, Ken Thompson's successful bid to oust a 24-year incumbent in the Brooklyn district attorney's office, and, the anti-AirBNB "Share Better NYC" campaign. -- Azi

TRANSITIONS -- Ian Bassin, Mayor Bill de Blasio's deputy counsel and an Obama alum, is departing on Friday for a job with a nonprofit called Give Directly. Bassin will be the domestic chief operating officer at the organization, which provides cash transfers throughout the world to impoverished people,according to the group's website. Give Directly uses mobile money technology to help people in some of the poorest places in the world get cash. In City Hall, Bassin worked on the expansion of the city's living wage law and the recently-announced school discipline reforms. He also was credited with coming up with the idea for a lawful program for the "It's Showtime" subway dancers.

CORRECTION: Yesterday's newsletter referred at one point to "City Limit" rather than "City Journal."

HAPPY BIRTHDAY: NY1 reporter Bobby Cuza, Kate Hinds, reporter with WNYC, Mark Botnick and Neysa Pranger (Friday), Rachel Noerdlinger, former Schneiderman aide Josh Meltzer and Assemblyman Steve Cymbrowitz, Newsday's assistant managing editor William Goldschlag, Jennifer James, director of government and external affairs at Medgar Evers College, Corey Ortega, Democratic operative in Upper Manhattan (Saturday), Albany restaurateur Angelo Mazzone, former New York City Council aide Edward Kiernan , and Natalie Grybauskas, press aide in City Hall, chess enthusiast, rap music encyclopedia. (Sunday).

** A Message from Nuclear Matters: Providing more than 61 percent of New York's carbon-free electricity, nuclear energy plants play a vital role in achieving our clean-energy and carbon-reduction goals. New York's nuclear energy fleet supports about 18,000 jobs and provides $2.5 billion to the state's GDP. Learn more at **

COUNCIL DOES DAMAGE CONTROL ON RAISES - POLITICO New York's Gloria Pazmino: Members of the City Council woke up to an unpleasant surprise on the cover of the Daily News on Thursday morning, when the paper reported that a small group of members is planning to push for a 71 percent pay raise. "S#*TTY COUNCIL!" screamed the News' disapproving headline lambasting council members who currently make $112,500 a year, for asking for a raise while police officers are offered none.

-- Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, who was described as being "surprised" by the high amount, held an impromptu press conference in the morning at City Hall to do damage control, denouncing the $191,000 figure as "ridiculous."Meanwhile, other members speculated about who leaked the figure, and worried about what it might mean for the goal of a more modest pay raise. "Not sure who has been talking," Mark-Viverito told reporters. "But this is a charter mandated process that we go through every four years. Obviously it was delayed in this case for several years and it's running its course."

-- Pointing fingers: But as members shuffled in and out of hearings on Thursday they privately grumbled about how the story had portrayed them, and offered theories about how the figure had been leaked to the press. -- "There is a group of four or five council members who have been pushing for this for a long time," one member who asked not to be identified told POLITICO New York. "There is a lot of frustration today because this made everyone look bad, you have the speaker on the cover of the Daily News and the words shitty council, I mean she was not happy." Others were much more accusatory, pointing their finger towards councilman David Greenfield - a member with speakership aspirations who they said was trying to curry favor among the body for a future vote in 2017. Asked about the allegations, Greenfield said "That is simply not true."

-- Related: In a follow-up story, the News published a graphic about members "DEEP IN DEBT" and "HIGH EARNERS." In the first category: Vincent Gentile ($30,000), Ben Kallos, Karen Koslowitz, and Mark Levine, who each owe $15,000. In the latter: Chaim Deutsch ($100,000-$250,000); Koo ($70,000-!995,997) and David Greenfield ($60,000-$99,999). SEE IT:

DE BLASIO FIELDS FRIENDLY QUESTIONS AT EDUCATION TOWN HALL - POLITICO New York's Eliza Shapiro: The event held inside a Jackson Heights, Queens public school was de Blasio's second town hall of his tenure. He took questions for two hours, spoke without his suit jacket and his sleeves rolled up. He was in notably good spirits, enthusiastically introducing each member of his administration as if announcing a sports line-up. ... Education reform groups argued the town hall was not a true public forum, noting that attendees had to call [host Councilman Danny] Dromm's office to be admitted. The pro-charter school group Families for Excellent Schools called it a 'Potemkin town hall.' ... Since Queens has relatively few charter schools compared to Manhattan, Brooklyn and the Bronx, de Blasio heard only one question about the charter sector. Asked whether he would support growing the number of charter schools, de Blasio gave his generic answer about wanting to "work with anyone."

MEDIA MORNING - "Daily News' 'all digital' ultimatum may backfire," by Post's Keith J. Kelly: "Top brass at the Daily News are said to be worried that the 'all digital' ultimatum delivered by Chief Executive William Holiber to drivers earlier this week will backfire - and will actually prompt rank and file union members to reject the tentative pact when they vote on Nov. 20. ... News brass hoped the threat of dumping a print paper and going all digital would push the drivers to vote for acceptance of the deal. But News executives involved in the negotiations are now said to be very worried it may not be enough to swing the restless drivers to accept the concession-heavy deal on the table."

THE TALK OF WALL STREET - "Goldman Sachs Names 425 New Managing Directors," by Dealbook's Liz Moyer: "Nearly a third of the Goldman Sachs Group's 425 newly minted managing directors are millennials, or people born after 1980. Forty percent were hired as analysts. Roughly 21 percent are former summer interns. ... The promotions were announced on Thursday, after weeks of a grueling internal vetting process. This class is considerably larger than the group of 280 employees promoted in 2013, when Goldman switched its format to name managing directors and partners in alternating years. Among the promoted are 106 women, a quarter of the total and the biggest percentage in a single year."

NO GO -- "Cuomo Rejects Natural Gas Port Proposed Off Long Island," by Times' Marc Santora: "Cuomo rejected a proposal on Thursday to build the first port for liquefied natural gas in New York State, saying it would pose a threat to the environment and make an inviting target for terrorists. Mr. Cuomo's decision comes after years of often bitter debate over a bid by Liberty Natural Gas, an energy company, to construct an underwater buoy system and pipeline, 19 miles from Jones Beach on Long Island. The company argued that the project, known as Port Ambrose, would save consumers millions of dollars in home heating costs, provide a vital supply of natural gas to the region and help reduce dependence on coal and oil. Opponents, however, argued that the project's potential dangers were greater than any possible gains."

SCRAP OVER REAL ESTATE SUMMIT -When the Brooklyn Museum announced that it would host the 6th Annual Brooklyn Real Estate Summit on Nov. 17, some local artists saw the event as a betrayal. Artist Sarah Quinter wrote an open letter to the museum accusing it of participating in gentrification. "The involvement of real estate interests in our cultural institutions is facilitating the displacement of countless residents throughout the borough, and it's also displacing the very same cultures that these museums like to put on display," she told POLITICO New York's Kelly Weill. The museum responded by reaching out to more artists and inviting them to speak at the conference, but many refused. Read more in the Culture-Busines Report:

OUT AND ABOUT --Time Editor Nancy Gibbs was honored with the Lifetime Achievement Award last night at the Newswomen's Club of New York Front Page Awards that took place at the Down Town Association in Manhattan. A tribute video in her honor featured interviews with Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, Charlie Rose, Katie Couric, Walter Isaacson, Jim Kelly and Diana Walker. Her last couple lines: "When I was starting out, I came to TIME because journalists got to write the first draft of history. Now we have the chance to make history. Don't be scared. Be great. Great ideas win. Great content wins. Great photography wins. Great video wins. If we get this right, all of us win, and much more important, our audience does too."

HILLARYWATCH -- "Poll Shows Hillary Clinton Is Seen as More Likely Than Bernie Sanders to Be Effective," by Times' Patrick Healy and Megan Thee-Brennan: "With the Democratic presidential nomination contest all but officially a two-person race, Hillary Rodham Clinton appears vastly better positioned than Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont to persuade party primary voters that she would be more effective at passing her agenda and dealing with international crises ... Mrs. Clinton even undercuts Mr. Sanders on his core political message, with 62 percent of Democratic primary voters saying she could bring about real change in Washington, compared with 51 percent for Mr. Sanders. ... Her party's primary voters expect Mrs. Clinton to be their eventual nominee by more than a 4-to-1 margin over Mr. Sanders."

REAL ESTATE -- DISSECTING RENT WOES-"Most rent-burdened New Yorkers are single seniors, single parents," by POLITICO New York's Sally Goldenberg: "More than four in 10 New York City tenants spend at least 30 percent of their income on rent, according to a key finding in a report released by the nonpartisan Citizens Budget Commission on Thursday. The study found 42 percent of New York City's renter households are what is commonly known as 'rent-burdened,' and half of those households are 'severely rent-burdened' - meaning they pay more than half their income in rent."

AIR RIGHTS-"Smoking Ban Proposal a Surprise to Some Public Housing Tenants," by Times' Mireya Navarro: "At the Lexington Houses in East Harlem, smoking is the least of some tenants' concerns. So the news that the federal government wants to ban smoking in homes in public housing across the country did not go over well with Samuel Higgs, 60 years old and a smoker since he was 24. 'My apartment desperately needs a paint job,' Mr. Higgs said. 'My gas hasn't worked for a month. You're not gonna fix my gas and then tell me I can't smoke in my own house?'"

NEW YARDSTICK-"Hudson Yards announces Boston Consulting Group will move in," by POLITICO New York's Sally Goldenberg: "The massive Hudson Yards development unfolding on Manhattan's Far West Side has announced another new tenant: the Boston Consulting Group, a major consulting firm. BCG, whose move has been rumored for months, will relocate at least 500 workers from its offices on Park Avenue and Park Avenue South into 193,295 square feet of space spanning six floors of 10 Hudson Yards, the company announced in a release Thursday morning."

-- "Target is Opening Near the World Trade Center in 2016," by DNAinfo's Irene Plagianos: "The big box retailer plans to open at 255 Greenwich St. in October 2016, the company announced Thursday. The store will be opening in a two-level, 48,242-square-foot space, according to the Commercial Observer. It will be Target's second location in Manhattan. The chain also has an East Harlem storefront."

THE HOME TEAMS -- Bills 22, Jets 17: The Bills beat the Jets in New Jersey, thwarting a late Ryan Fitzpatrick drive and giving great pleasure to Rex Ryan.

The day ahead: So much college basketball. St. John's hosts Wagner. Siena visits Duke. In the pro game, the Nets are in Sacramento. And LeBron visits The Garden.

#UpstateAmerica: A Buffalo church's "Jesus had two fathers" sign has stirred controversy.

** A Message from Nuclear Matters: Some of America's existing nuclear energy plants face early closure due to current economic and policy conditions. Providing more than 62% of America's carbon-free electricity, existing, state-of-the-art nuclear energy plants play a vital role in achieving our clean-energy and carbon-reduction goals.

In New York, nuclear energy plants provide 31 percent of the state's electricity and 61 percent of our carbon-free electricity. The existing nuclear energy plants in New York also support about 18,000 jobs and provide $2.5 billion to the state's GDP.

If we want to keep New York working, we need policies that will keep New York's state-of-the-art nuclear energy plants working for all of us. Join us at **

FOR MORE political and policy news from New York, check out Politico New York's home page:

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