No Such Thing as Free Paid-Family Leave

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 KerbeinFrank Kerbein, a member of the legislative affairs team for the Business Council of New York State, joined Poozer Politics to answer some of those questions and provide some perspective about the history of family leave.

He outlined the push by Gov. Andrew Cuomo to adopt paid-family leave in 2016, explained how the program is funded and described the potential benefits. Kerbein also highlighted the potential challenges with implementation, which could lead to fewer weeks of leave and higher costs to employees. Continue reading “No Such Thing as Free Paid-Family Leave”

Reflections from the Plywood Hut

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 Cuomo and highlighted some of her favorite recurring guests on her show, including Richard Ravitch, Ken Lovett and Michael Gormley. Continue reading “Reflections from the Plywood Hut”

EXTRA EXTRA: Extraordinary Sessions 101 with Professor Poulopoulos

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 stories from the extraordinary summer of 2009, when the legislature returned day after day, including the Fourth of July!

Continue reading “EXTRA EXTRA: Extraordinary Sessions 101 with Professor Poulopoulos”

Not so Special Election

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 strategist Jessica Proud weighed in on the results, with a focus on issues that dominate special elections, the importance of a good ground game and the enthusiasm gap.

She also talked about areas for Republican growth in New York, laid out a path for members of Congress to avoid getting swallowed up in national trends and waxed nostalgically about past mayors of New York City. Continue reading “Not so Special Election”

Watchdogs on High Alert Over Senate Stipends

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 issue.

Blair Horner“You can’t have one system on the books, and a second set of books doling money out to other people,” said Blair Horner, a good government activist with NYPIRG.

Horner came on the podcast to talk about the misuse of taxpayer funds with the stipend practice and urged the state Senate to reform the process. He also outlined the general need for independent oversight in New York, especially for state contracts and economic development initiatives. Continue reading “Watchdogs on High Alert Over Senate Stipends”