With Assist From Olivia Wilde, de Blasio-Backed Nonprofit Shifts Pre-K Focus

Olivia Wilde. (Photo: Gage Skidmore/Wikimedia)
Olivia Wilde. (Photo: Gage Skidmore/Wikimedia)

Actress Olivia Wilde is joining the celebrity bandwagon supporting Mayor Bill de Blasio’s campaign for universal prekindergarten, but like the mayor, Ms. Wilde is shifting the focus away from his signature tax-the-rich proposal to fund the effort.

“The progress we’re making on early education and after-school means a lot to me personally. I’m about to become a mom and I’m grateful for everyone – yourself included – who is helping to fight for our kids,” Ms. Wilde wrote in an email, which will be sent to Mr. de Blasio’s pre-K supporters later this morning. Continue reading “With Assist From Olivia Wilde, de Blasio-Backed Nonprofit Shifts Pre-K Focus”

Pre-K Campaign Launches Robocalls to Thank State Assembly

UPKNYC's Logo. (photo: upknyc.org)
UPKNYC’s Logo. (photo: upknyc.org)

A nonprofit lunched to push Mayor Bill de Blasio’s signature prekindergarten plan made over 200,000 robocalls last night to tout its progress, Dan Levitan, a spokesman for UPKNYC, told the Observer this morning.

In the robocall, a UPKNYC field director praises the State Assembly for including Mr. de Blasio’s tax on high income earners to fund expansive pre-K and after-school programs in its preliminary budget plan. Continue reading “Pre-K Campaign Launches Robocalls to Thank State Assembly”

De Blasio Welcomes Parent Bloggers to City Hall

Bill de Blasio and Chirlane McCray speaking to parent bloggers. (Photo: Ed Reed for the Office of Mayor Bill de Blasio)
Bill de Blasio and Chirlane McCray speaking to parent bloggers. (Photo: Ed Reed for the Office of Mayor Bill de Blasio)

Mayor de Blasio took his pre-K campaign to the blogosphere this afternoon, inviting a group of parent bloggers to City Hall for  a discussion on preschool and after-school programs, which he is fighting to expand.

“We need Albany to hear concerns of parents in our city and provide the resources,” said Mr. de Blasio, who has launched a massive push to try to convince lawmakers in Albany to approve a tax on the city’s richest residents to fund the programs. Continue reading “De Blasio Welcomes Parent Bloggers to City Hall”

De Blasio Rallies Troops for Final Pre-K Push

Bill de Blasio and labor leaders pressing the mayor's signature pre-k plan.
Bill de Blasio joined by labor leaders who support his signature pre-k plan.

Mayor Bill de Blasio welcomed about 200 supporters to Gracie Mansion last night to urge them to do all they can to push his plan to raise taxes on the city’s richest residents to fund universal pre-K.

Members of the crowd, which included the Rev. Al Sharpton and other prominent clergy members, as well as labor leaders, developers, education activists and administration officials, were asked to get their friends and colleagues involved in pushing the “UPKNYC” plan to reticent Albany lawmakers, according to those in attendance. Continue reading “De Blasio Rallies Troops for Final Pre-K Push”

Bill de Blasio’s Old Campaign Operations Live On, in One Form or Another

The @deBlasioNYC Twitter feed.
The @deBlasioNYC Twitter feed.

Bill de Blasio’s old campaign Twitter account has been busy these days.

For the past six weeks, @deBlasioNYC has done nothing but retweet a steady stream of posts from UPKNYC–the nonprofit campaign launched to push the new mayor’s plan to raise taxes on the wealthy to fund universal pre-K–blasting the campaign’s messages to the 49,800 followers the then-candidate acquired mostly during his winning race. (The @UPKNYC account has around 2,400 followers itself.) Continue reading “Bill de Blasio’s Old Campaign Operations Live On, in One Form or Another”

Real Estate Execs Endorse Mayor’s Pre-K Tax [Updated]

A number of real estate executives have come out today in support of Mayor Bill de Blasio‘s plan to tax high-earners to fund universal prekindergarten and after-school programs, representing the latest group of executives to join a grassroots campaign called UPKNYC, Commercial Observer has learned.
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Activists Fan Out Across City to Push de Blasio’s Pre-K Plan

A volunteer collecting signatures this morning in the Bronx. (Photo: Twitter/UPKNYC)
A volunteer collecting signatures this morning in the Bronx. (Photo: Twitter/@UPKNYC)

These days, the liberal activists collecting signatures and knocking on doors aren’t rallying against the mayor; they’re working for him.

Newly-minted Mayor Bill de Blasio this morning began the next phase of his push to raise taxes to fund universal pre-K, unleashing a “grassroots and online campaign” dubbed “UPKNYC” to build momentum for and pressure lawmakers in Albany to pass his signature campaign proposal. Continue reading “Activists Fan Out Across City to Push de Blasio’s Pre-K Plan”