Overriding Adams today

January 30, 2024

Not every New York City Council member who voted for the How Many Stops Act actually liked the police reform bill.

Of the 35 who last month approved the legislation — which would require cops to report demographic information about even low-level stops — there were about eight members who had issues with it, one lawmaker estimated to Playbook. Another put the tally at 12 or more.

“A bill like this should be a bit more flexible,” explained yet another unsure member. “The bill highlights a problem, but does it solve it?”

But Mayor Eric Adams’ team couldn’t flip the two votes needed to stop the Council from overriding his veto — which they are all but certain to do today, Speaker Adrienne Adams told Playbook.

“I feel really good,” on the vote count, she said Monday afternoon.

In addition to those voting on the substance of the bills, Council members may reflexively support an override out of a sense of solidarity with the body.

Mayor Adams’ very public lobbying campaign to convince them otherwise included inviting lawmakers on an NYPD ride-along with bullet proof vests, surprising appeals to bar mitzvah guests, calls from former Chief of Staff Frank Carone and press conferences backed by NYPD members talking about how the bill will waste their time.

None of it seemed to work.

“There was an opportunity for him to potentially derail this but he and his team didn’t do a good job working the members,” one Council member told Playbook.

That person hadn’t heard directly from the mayor since December. The other unsure member said neither the speaker’s nor mayor’s office called asking for their vote.

“The lobbying has been total shit. On both sides,” said the third member.

Some Council members just want to be coddled, a person on the mayor’s team familiar with the discussions argued. The mayor’s team was talking to members, the person said, adding that their vote should be on the merits, not interpersonal politics.

“Crime is down and this bill will take us backwards,” the person said.

The Council also plans to override the mayor’s veto of a bill placing limits on solitary confinement and restraints in city jails. That bill seems destined to face a legal challenge before it gets implemented.

Intergovernmental affairs hasn’t been a strength for this mayor. But this veto fight hasn’t been a total loss for him either. It helped to emphasize his support for law enforcement officers, who he contrasted to progressives like Public Advocate Jumaane Williams — the sponsor of both bills. – Jeff Coltin

IT’S TUESDAY. Got news? Send it our way: Jeff Coltin, Emily Ngo and Nick Reisman.

WHERE’S KATHY? Signing public safety legislation at the Capitol.

WHERE’S ERIC? Appearing on NY1’s “Mornings on 1,” then on PIX11’s Morning News, then on FOX5’s “Good Day New York,” then on CBS News New York’s streaming network, and one final broadcast stop for a live interview on 1010 WINS’ “Morning Drive,” delivering remarks at the Citywide Agency Response to Human Trafficking, then another TV appearance on WABC 7’s “Eyewitness News Mornings at 10,” hosting an in person media availability in City Hall.

QUOTE OF THE DAY: “We should all continue his custom of treating all people like family. The world would be a better place.” – former City Councilmember Mark Weprin on the death of former City Councilmember Paul Vallone, for whom city flags were lowered Monday.