Wednesday, November 30, 2005

What Happens in the Lobby...

...Stays in the Lobby?

So the story goes with the city's lobbyists?? Whatever.

A term limits debate raging on The Politicker is making us think a bit longer about the oft-used explanation for why term limits must go, at least according to our Speaker candidates. Time and time again, they cite the increasing power of lobbyists as a rationale to end term limits as we know them. Fine.

But doth they all protest too much? Each is pocketing campaign contributions from many of the city's top lobbyists. For example, Suri Kasirer, who seems to be at the center of attention, has contributed to each of our Speaker candidates - as well as to Councilwoman Gale Brewer, the prime sponsor of the term limits leg.

And for kicks, just take a look at all the PACs and lobbyists that are doling ducket$ to each of the Speaker wanna-bes.

Hmmmm ... We're confused!

250 Broadway Productions Presents

Ta Ta 2 Term Limits

So, we thought we'd start off our first official day of publication with a shout-out to all Council Members and Council Members-elect slated to hold office next year (see prior posting if you have any question whether or not this applies to you - or your representative, for that matter).

Here's what our inquiring minds want to know. And we promise, it's not a trick question.

For the record, do you support having the Council pass through legislative fiat (as opposed to using other mechanisms such as voter referendum, charter revision commission, etc.) a bill that either extends or repeals the current term limits law?

Truth be told, we'd prefer a simple yes or no answer, but if you feel like you must pontificate - all the power to you! We promise a full-on airing of your views. But first, you must reveal them to us at

And as a holiday gift to us all, why don't we just use the 8th of December as a due date. From that point forward, we'll be keeping a running tally of your responses.

Mayor Mikey Still No Likey

Tho Voter Ref an "Option"

Generally, Mikey thinks eight is enough - as in, leave the issue of term limits alone. But, should they feel the need to tinker, the Mayor says of the Council's leanings, anything short of giving the voters the final say would be completely unacceptable - in today's New York Post and Daily News.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Sometimes You're In...

And Sometimes You're Out

Such is the story with term limits.

We've updated the chart made famous by Gotham Gazette to include the newly elected Council Members.

Simply click on the image to enlarge. It makes for a very handy reference guide.

Monday, November 28, 2005

That's Debatable

Ummm ... Nice Try!

There was one other interesting moment during tonight's term limits forum on which we haven't yet reported. It was when Council Member Gale Brewer, the prime sponsor of the soon-to-be-introduced term limits legislation, left open the possibility that the Council could enact said legislation with the understanding that any changes in the law wouldn't apply to them (hence taking away any and all appearances of self-indulgence).

We must admit, she had us there for a moment! Everyone in the room really started to believe that the Council could actually do the right thing. But when pressed, Brewer mealymouthed what appeared to be a pretty solid refusal to commit to taking this very important step.

Que sera sera!

Sunday, November 27, 2005

Council Gall-A-Thon

One Unimpressed Individual

Michael Goodwin of the Daily News shares his views today on what he sees as the latest in Council antics. Here's a snippet:

The people spoke, but the City Council didn't listen. So the people spoke again, but still the Council didn't listen. Is the Council hard of hearing, or breathtakingly arrogant?

When the subject is term limits, "arrogant" is the answer. The attitude is the public be damned.

Hell Hath No Fury

Like the DN Scorned

Facing a fate worse than death - by which we mean being forced out of their cushy seats of power - some members of the City Council are toying with trying to repeal the law that limits them to two terms in office. They must be stopped.

Even to consider such an effort, as championed by Manhattan Councilwoman Gale Brewer, is a brazen betrayal of the public will. It was voters who decreed by referendum in 1993 that elected officials would be restricted to eight years in office, not 12 years, as Brewer wants.

- Daily News, Editorial, June 16, 2005

Thursday, November 24, 2005

Lauder to Council:

Go Ahead, Make My Day!

In today's New York Times, Joyce Purnick reveals that wealthy Republican Ronald S. Lauder, who first brought term limits to NYC, will almost definitely put forward the time and resources to undo whatever it is the Council may do.

"I'm going to fight it every way," Mr. Lauder, the cosmetics heir, said in a phone interview. "I will put everything behind it. I didn't fight the battle twice to give up."

And Lauder seems to take personally the irony of what's coming down the pipe.

"...I am just disappointed that people who got in through term limits, who thanked me, saying they never would have gotten in otherwise, want to change it so they can stay in."

Mayor Mikey No Likey

In Case You Had Any Doubts

The Mayor came out swingin' today in the Daily News railing against the oh-so-savvy-seven Speaker candidates' term delimiting intentions.

Mayor Bloomberg denounced some City Council members' calls to extend their term limits through legislation as an anti-democratic "outrage" - noting voters twice approved the eight-year limit law.

"[While] it may be that the City Council has a right to override them, deliberately saying to the public, 'We don't care what you think,' I would use the word disgraceful," Bloomberg said yesterday.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Latest Term Limits Manifestations

On NY1

Click here to watch Michael Scotto's latest coverage on the Speaker candidates' moves to alter their own term limits.

Monday, November 21, 2005

It's Official!

CU Says FU to CMs Looking to Extend Council Terms Via Leg

The historic good government group, Citizens Union, today released a statement which stands up for the citizens, and derides Council Members' efforts to tinker with the term limits law.

Dick Dadey, Executive Director of the Union, had this to say:

"Though there may be compelling and very good reasons to consider extending the term of New York City Council members to three four-year terms, it would be deeply distressing for the body to take the undemocratic step of ignoring the wishes of the voters twice expressed. Willfully flouting those past referendum results and failing to seek the views of current voters would violate the principles of good government and the practice of municipal democracy that Citizens Union supports."

Sunday, November 20, 2005

Oh No Likey...

...What They See

Joyce Purnick of The New York Times predicts today that term limits will go the way of Speaker candidate Bill de Blasio's single-source union contributions bill - straight through the Council.

And the edit heads at the Daily News ... ummm ... not so happy with the whipper-snappers lining up for the Speaker's post ... all of whom basically pledged during a recent debate to absolutely tinker with term limits.

An excerpt to whet your appetite:

The arrogance of it! Having benefited personally from the term limits law, they want to benefit personally from its abolition.

Voters should be aware of this planned end-run around the citizenry's declared desire. If the pols want to change the rules, let them put the proposition before the people. Again. Afraid to do that, gentle councilfolk? Please tell us why.

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Ne'er Mind What We Say

The DN Says Term Limits Going Away

Term limits will be a changin' if your next Speaker has it their way. Referendum to the voters or not, doesn't really seem to matter.Frank Lombardi of the Daily News gives the alteration of term limits a 6.5 out of 7 chance (93%) of happenin'.

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Know Why We're Pissed Off?

B/c - Dear Pols - You're Acting Like Donkeys

No matter where you fall on the question of term limits, and we know you fall somewhere, the issue has been put to the voters not once, but twice over the past 12 years. And both times, we ,the voters, chose to enact them.

We gave you the honor of representing us for 8 years - no more, no less.

So suffice it to say that we're less than thrilled with your latest efforts to tinker with (let alone, completely undo) the job limitations we placed upon you, the same job limitations btw which put many of you into office in the first place.

Now we know that some of you believe that you know better than we do, you've been quoted saying as much. Have you really forgotten, though, that it is you who works for us?

Well, just in case, be aware that there is now one PO Boss here to remind you.

And so, allow us to make our bottom line crystal clear: if you wanna make a change to your term limits, YOU must get OUR approval first - no ifs, ands or buts!