Thursday, December 18, 2014

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NY1 Political Director Bob Hardt's daily look Inside City Hall.

NY1 ItCH: Mayor Moonbeam Shines in Gotham City

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It's certainly a brave new world in New York City where some business owners are likely doing spit takes after hearing the news this morning that the mayor and City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito are planning on expanding the city's paid sick leave bill.

The move to make the legislation include establishments that employ as few as five employees will be vehemently opposed by some business groups but it's almost guaranteed that the bill will sail through the Council with the support of Mark-Viverito and de Blasio.

It's a far cry from the Bloomberg era when the mayor then was dead-set against the legislation and City Council Speaker Christine Quinn kept the bill from coming to the floor for three years. It was only the pressure of last year's Democratic mayoral primary that led Quinn to support a watered-down version of the original legislation which was vetoed by the mayor and overridden by the Council.

It's a different story where legislation like this and the Living Wage Bill are now high on City Hall's priority list – along with banning horse-drawn carriages. With de Blasio's push to raise taxes on the city's wealthiest residents, this could be a nightmare year for local conservatives and a treasure-trove of grousing for the New York Post's editorial page editors.

While it's nice to get what you want, de Blasio may want to find something politically to throw the way of the business elite which is likely worrying that New York City is becoming Jerry Brown's version of San Francisco on the Hudson. While we're living in boom town now, you want the power elite to be on your side should the economy skid or crime to start to rise.

De Blasio last night attended a party thrown by the Real Estate Board of New York – an organization that probably was less than thrilled with his election last year and also likely wasn’t on the mayor's Christmas Card list. While meeting with REBNY or Staten Island voters who didn't support him (see "Pizzagate") is a smart first step, it won't be enough if the mayor wants to continue to have sky-high approval ratings. Picking all the low-hanging liberal fruit he wants, de Blasio will soon probably be looking to shine his moonbeam in some surprising places.

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