Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Police Commissioner Ray Kelly threatened in their starkest terms to date today that two police reform bills headed for passage will compromise public safety–enabling terrorists, criminals and gang members–but refused to place the blame on the City Council speaker, who is allowing the bills to go to vote.
Mr. Kelly and Mr. Bloomberg, joined by more than a dozen law endorsement officials at police headquarters, pointed to the city’s record-low shooting and murder rates, and warned the safety gains the city has won are at risk of being blundered if the bills, which would create an inspector general over the NYPD and expand the definition of racial profiling, are passed by the City Council.
City Council Speaker Christine Quinn announced a plan Monday to bypass Councilman Peter Vallone Jr.’s efforts to halt the passage of two controversial public safety bills by forcing a vote using a rarely-used mechanism that members–including Mr. Vallone—had previously threatened to use against Ms. Quinn.
Councilmen Jumaane Williams and Brad Lander said they plan to file discharge petitions later this week to force the council to vote on two bills opposed by both the mayor and Police Commissioner Ray Kelly: one that would create an independent inspector general to monitor the NYPD and another that would expand the definition of racial profiling and allow those who believe they’ve been wronged to sue police in state court.
As the spotlight shines on mayoral hopeful Christine Quinn’s record as City Council Speaker, at least half a dozen members are considering forcing measures she opposes to the floor in an unprecedented display of rebellion, Council sources said Friday.
At least one member has already collected the seven signatures needed to file two motion to discharge petitions to bypass Ms. Quinn—a tactic that was threatened in the paid sick leave fight, but that no member has dared yet under her tenure.