The Satmar Hasidim of South Williamsburg have their own schools, their own ambulance service, their own courts—even their own secret police. And soon, they may have their own armory.
Rumors have been swirling within the community that Governor Andrew Cuomo’s office, represented informally by Orthodox businessman Abraham Eisner, is on the verge of concluding a deal between the warring Satmar factions—led by the late Grand Rebbe Moshe Teitelbaum’s two sons, Aaron and Zalman—over disputed property.
The two factions, according to the rumors, would jointly purchase the 165,166-square foot, 3.2-acre Marcy Armory from the state, which has been trying to offload the property. The armory would be physically divided between the two camps, though the Zalmanites would pay more than the Aaronites. In exchange, the Aaronites would renounce their claims—claims unlikely to be backed by secular courts—on summer camps in Ulster County and a matzoh bakery on Broadway in Williamsburg. Read More
Council Speaker Christine Quinn may have negotiated a more business-friendly paid sick day bill than advocates wanted, but Mayor Michael Bloomberg is not satisfied. Indeed, in a statement released earlier this morning, Mr. Bloomberg castigated the legislation’s latest iteration as “short-sighted economic policy” and declared his intention to veto it.
Headline of the Day: “Michael Bloomberg Has Not Read the Widely-Read Story about Christine Quinn’s Temper.”
In order to blunt the accusations of retaliation, Council Speaker Christine Quinn‘s office directed NY1 to allied colleagues. “She was good to me and to my district before I voted against the renaming of the bridge, and she has been good to me and my district after,” Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer said, while Councilwoman Julissa Ferreras declared, “Usually men, when they get angry or frustrated, that’s viewed as a point of leadership. It’s showing your skills, showing your negotiation skills. And now, we’re questioning it as a woman. I think it’s shameful.”
Both of Brooklyn D.A. Joe Hynes‘ rivals are kvetching about his upcoming reality show, with Ken Thompson blasting it as “reckless” and Abe George writing a cease-and-desist letter to CBS News. The letter, which can be viewed here, argued the show “will violate New York State campaign finance laws by unlawfully contributing money and services (in the form of a de facto infomercial , for instance) … well in excess of the $5,000 contribution limit.”
Alexandra Pelosi’s new documentary, Fall to Grace, which airs tonight on HBO, offers a moving and sympathetic portrait of Jim McGreevey, the former governor of New Jersey, almost 10 years after his humiliating resignation from public office.
Mr. McGreevey, 55, stepped down as governor after revealing that he had been involved in a gay affair Read More
Mayor Michael Bloomberg would really prefer if reporters would cease inquiring about which candidate he’ll ultimately endorse in the race to replace him this year. And he conveyed that message again and again at an unrelated press conference earlier this morning.
“I know who I’m going to vote for and I may change my mind between now and then,” Mr. Bloomberg declared at one point. “If I do, you’re not going to know about it.”
“Uh, let me–” Mr. Bloomberg paused.
“Wrap up,” Marc La Vorgna, Mr. Bloomberg’s press secretary, jumped in. The mayor, however, wasn’t about to wrap up.
As a page one New York Timesstory about Christine Quinn‘s short temper made the rounds yesterday, a recording of the mayoral candidate’s feisty voice mails from 2002 were uploaded to YouTube.
Ms. Quinn left the messages for a Hell’s Kitchen resident who opposed area developments including Hudson Yards (now under construction) and the West Side Stadium (long since jettisoned). The recipient spread his criticism to Ms. Quinn, who as district three representative did not personally attend a December 17, 2002 press conference condemning the projects. Read More