The Fourth Estate
Marching in March
Bill de Blasio slammed the New York Times this afternoon for its front-page profile of John Doherty, which suggested the new mayor had snubbed the long-standing sanitation commissioner at a press conference yesterday.
Tale of Two Snowplows
Mayor Bill de Blasio is going to skip this year’s St. Patrick’s Day parade, citing the exclusion of openly gay participants. But one of his Irish-American commissioners is going to march anyway.
“I march in a lot of St. Patrick’s Day parades and I’ll probably march in this one this year too,” Sanitation Commissioner John Doherty told Geraldo Rivera in a radio interview this morning.
Mayor Bill de Blasio today defended his administration’s snow-clearing efforts, brushing aside allegations that plows skipped the Upper East Side in an act of political revenge.
“They’re just mistaken. No one was treated differently. We believe in a five-bough approach in everything we do,” he told reporters, taking questions during a storm briefing at a Brooklyn firehouse.
New Yorkers may have elected him on his campaign promise to reduce widening income inequality, but Bill de Blasio still knows what can really bury a mayor’s approval rating in the winter months: too much snow.
At his final press conference today–just hours before he takes office–Mr. de Blasio said he identified with the woes of outer-borough residents struggling with unplowed streets and promised “aggressive action” if a big snowstorm hits this week.
When Hurricane Sandy came ashore, it fell to the city’s leaders and the thousands of workers at their command to secure our coasts, to rescue those trapped by water and without power, to help the city rebuild. The Observer spent Monday and Tuesday talking with New York’s top public officials about Hurricane Sandy. These are their experiences in their own words.
Joe Lhota, chairman and CEO, Metropolitan Transportation Authority: I have an app on my iPad that monitors hurricanes on the East Coast. I have always lived on the water. I always watch the app. So when I first got involved in this—it was long before it even hit Jamaica—I knew when it started as a tropical storm, and a hurricane, and a tropical storm, and then a hurricane again.
Joe Bruno, commissioner, NYC Office of Emergency Management: We follow the weather very closely this time of year as it comes off the tip of Africa, or wherever it develops. This particular storm came out of the southwest of the Caribbean. At 11 a.m. on October 22, we saw a tropical depression. At that point it’s just a depression, and you don’t know much about it. By 6 p.m., it was upgraded already to a tropical storm called Sandy. It continued to strengthen during the next day, and we kept track of it as it moved across Jamaica.