New York CIty Council Member Ben Kallos

New York Post

New York Post Board of Elections seeks $1.3M for cybersecurity measures by Rich Calder

Board of Elections seeks $1.3M for cybersecurity measures

His request comes after US intelligence and law enforcement agencies released a January report in the final days of the Obama administration that found the Russian government employed cyberattacks to undermine Hillary Clinton and boost Donald Trump.

Considering the request for additional funding, Councilman Ben Kallos (D-Manhattan), the committee chair, asked Ryan why he isn’t taking up de Blasio on an offer for an extra $20 million provided the agency agrees to a series of reforms, including establishing a blue-ribbon panel to identify failures.

Ryan cited “philosophical” differences with the administration for not taking the money.

New York Post De Blasio aides’ legal bills are costing taxpayers millions by Michael Gartland

De Blasio aides’ legal bills are costing taxpayers millions

The city’s top lawyer predicted Monday that taxpayers will have to shell out “a few million dollars more” for the legal bills of mayoral aides swept up in several corruption probes.

And that’s on top of the $10.5 million already spent on outside lawyers.

Corporation Counsel Zach Carter described the additional legal costs as not “a large magnitude” and said it appears the federal probes are “winding down and concluding.”

“We believe that there will be a few million dollars more expended, but I can’t give you an exact figure,” Carter testified at a City Council budget hearing. “I don’t believe that it will be a large magnitude of expenditures.”

New York Post City official was fired for something other than Rivington House deal by Michael Gartland

City official was fired for something other than Rivington House deal

A top city official wasn’t fired because of his role in a controversial land deal that allowed a non-profit nursing home to be converted to luxury housing — but his boss refused to say Monday if he was ousted because of other federal investigations.

The axed official, Ricardo Morales, who served as a deputy commissioner at the Department of Citywide Administrative Services, was at the center of two deals now being probed by federal investigators.

One was the lifting of deed restrictions on Rivington House, a Lower East Side nursing home, that eventually led to its sale for luxury condos.

New York Post Why voting in NYC is poised to be a complete mess by Rich Calder

Why voting in NYC is poised to be a complete mess

“I am deeply concerned about whether a patronage-run Board of Elections can run an election properly,” Councilman Ben Kallos (D-Manhattan) said on Monday.

Kallos, who chairs the council’s Government Operations Committee, added that he left an oversight hearing last month still believing voters are in for long lines and snafus, despite recent efforts to increase the number of poll workers to 36,000 and boost voting technology at the 1,205 poll sites.

Michael Ryan, the agency’s executive director, brushed the criticism aside, telling The Post he and his staff are more than ready for the big day.

New York Post Deputy mayor’s Rivington timeline doesn’t match de Blasio’s by Yoav Gonen and Michael Gartland

Deputy mayor’s Rivington timeline doesn’t match de Blasio’s

City Councilmember Ben Kallos (D-Manhattan), chair of the Committee on Governmental Operations, said the hearing elicited a number of contradictions from prior accounts from City Hall.

 

New York Post Officials press de Blasio to release records on pending deed restrictions by Michael Gartland

Officials press de Blasio to release records on pending deed restrictions

Citywide Administrative Services Commissioner Lisette Camilo testified at a City Council hearing two weeks ago that she would share records on more than a dozen properties with pending restriction changes, but according to Brewer and Councilman Ben Kallos, she still hasn’t.

The requests come several months after the city lifted deed restrictions on the Rivington House nursing home, paving the way for the property to be sold to a developer that plans to convert it to luxury housing — a deal now being investigated by the US Attorney’s Office.

Kallos suggested the delay could hurt the mayor’s spending plan. “We need to see it before we pass the budget,” he said.

New York Post Builder who donated to NY Dems gets sought after lot in shady deal by Rich Calder

Builder who donated to NY Dems gets sought after lot in shady deal

During a budget hearing at the City Council Friday, DCAS Commissioner Lisette Camilo said the city removes about four deed restrictions a year and that “13 to 14” already in the pipeline were put on hold following a suspicious deal on the Lower East Side, where a developer made a $72 million profit when a deed ­restriction was quietly lifted.

Councilman Ben Kallos (D-Manhattan) told The Post afterward that he had to learn about the Harlem deal from the press and couldn’t get answers from the administration.

“The city has to take ownership of what is happening,” he said. “I am deeply troubled that there was no budget transparency in this process.”

Camilo said her agency would surrender its deed-restriction rec­ords for the past five years to the City Council for review.

New York Post De Blasio backs bill to limit bundling of campaign contributions by Michael Gartland

De Blasio backs bill to limit bundling of campaign contributions

A bill by Councilman Ben Kallos (D-Manhattan), discussed at a hearing Monday, would prohibit campaigns from accepting public matching funds off money raised by lobbyists who bundle unlimited contributions from other donors.

By law, lobbyists, contractors and others doing business with the city can give no more than $400 to a mayoral candidate. But a loophole allows those same individuals to bundle unlimited amounts from others to the same candidates.

New York Post School chancellor afraid mock elections would cause bullying by Michael Gartland

School chancellor afraid mock elections would cause bullying

Schools Chancellor Carmen Fariña said Wednesday she is concerned that holding mock presidential elections in schools could lead to the type of bullying common in the real race for the White House.

New York Post Councilman wants closing churches converted to schools by Rich Calder

Councilman wants closing churches converted to schools

A Manhattan legislator says the possible downsizing of Catholic churches in the Big Apple could provide desperately needed space to the public school system.

City Councilman Ben Kallos fired off a letter last week to Schools Chancellor Carmen Fariña and School Construction Authority President Lorraine Grillo urging them to consider acquiring churches that might come on the market.

“Although we wish to avoid the closings, they present a unique and time-sensitive opportunity to build new schools,” said Kallos.