The Briefly for June 22, 2020 – The “An Answer to Our Collective Fireworks Question” Edition

Today’s daily NYC news digest: NYC starts reopening phase two, Tuesday is primary day, the only true New Yorker, an NYPD cop uses an illegal chokehold, and more

Today – Low: 71˚ High: 85˚
Clear throughout the day.

A boy caught a 20-pound catfish in Central Park using a bagel as bait. When we have conversations about who is a “real” New Yorker, this catfish deserves to be a part of the conversation. (Mike Mishkin for I Love the Upper West Side)

Tuesday is a 2020 primary in New York for much more than the Democratic presidential nominee. Here’s your guide to the local races. (Kathleen Culliton for Patch)

If you applied for an absentee ballot and it hasn’t arrived, here’s what to do. (Brigid Gergin for Gothamist)

This weekend was the breaking point based on everyone in the city going to Twitter to complain about fireworks. Firework complaints are up 230x in June. What the hell is going on? (Sydney Pereira, Beth Fertig, David Cruz, Jake Dobkin, and Jake Offenhartz for Gothamist)

Believe it or not, there’s a real answer to what the hell is going on. According to Dave Hill, all of the fireworks shows in the Northeast have been canceled and fireworks vendors are up to their ears in pro-grade fireworks. Thanks to supply and demand, dealers have turned to the black market and are trying to unload their fireworks for any price. (@DaveHill77)

“Everywhere I go it smells the same, and it smells like my breath.” Let’s check-in with David Sedaris. (Sarah Lyall for NY Times)

A guide to phase two’s reopening. (Jen Carlson for Gothamist)

Phase two means something big: Offices are open once more. If companies decide to reopen their offices? That’s a different story. (Michael Gold and Troy Closson for NY Times)

A 1.9-acre waterfront park and small beach is coming to the Bushwick Inlet Park, which was approved by the Parks and Waterfront Committee of Brooklyn’s Community Board 1. (Devin Gannon for 6sqft)

Looking for a piece of history off the beaten path? Check out Jackie Robinson’s house on Tilden Ave. (Untapped New York for Michelle Young)

After 96 days, Governor Cuomo’s daily press conferences have come to an end. (Bill Mahoney for Politico)

Half of New York’s working-class immigrants have lost their jobs as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, according to a new study by the Center for Urban Future. (Claudia Irizarry Aponte for The City)

How many days has it been since the passing of the Eric Garner Chokehold Ban? An NYPD officer was suspended without pay after being caught on video using an illegal chokehold on an unarmed Black man in Queens. (Mark Hallum and Zach Gewelb for amNewYork Metro)

86.4% of tickets for biking on the sidewalk in 2018 and 2019 went to Black and Hispanic New Yorkers, even though they comprise only 49 percent of cyclists. (Julianne Cuba for Streetsblog)

Dominique Alexander was found hanging from a tree last week in Fort Tryon Park in Manhattan, his death was ruled a suicide. Alexander’s death is one of many deaths of Black men that have been ruled a suicide after being found hanging from trees. (Ben Yakas for Gothamist)

There were reports of three nooses being hung in Van Cortlandt Park in the Bronx on Juneteenth. The NYPD declined to open an investigation, claiming the ropes were nothing more than harmless string. This is the second investigation into a noose left in a city park that the NYPD has refused or closed without a thorough investigation. (Jake Offenhartz for Gothamist)

Vincent D’Andraia, the cop that was suspended for showing a protester to the ground and was charged with misdemeanor assault has a history of 11 allegations of misconduct since 2015. (Yoav Gonen for The City)

Students at predominantly Black New York City schools are significantly less likely to have a positive view of school police or to believe school discipline is applied fairly. If that’s your assumption, there’s a new study that confirms your assumption. (Jessica Gould, Alex Zimmerman, and Gabrielle LaMarr LeMee and Gothamist)

New York City’s education oversight board is calling for public schools, not the police, to manage the officers stationed on city campuses. (Christina Veiga for Chalkbeat)

“The Case for Self-Enforcing Streets” from Transportation Alternatives argues that the NYPD should be removed from traffic enforcement, calling for an expansion in enforcement technology, changing how crash investigations work, and more. (Gersh Kuntzman for Streetsblog)

Hundreds of protesters marched on Astoria Blvd in Queens demanding the removal of the Christopher Columbus statue. (Angélica Acevedo for amNewYork Metro)

The American Museum of Natural History expressed plans to have the statue of Theodore Roosevelt removed from its entrance on Central Park West for its racist depictions of Native American and African figures. (Mike Mishkin for I Love the Upper West Side)

While we’re talking about statues, let’s encourage the Long Island town of Babylon to tear down their statue of Robert Moses. (Sydney Pereira for Gothamist)

“Mayor de Blasio could have acted all along. He could have called for the NYPD to make officers’ disciplinary records public. He could have fired Officer Pantaleo immediately after he murdered Eric Garner. Mayor de Blasio knows how this all works, but benefits from the opaqueness that characterizes the political system in this city and state. He has amplified the problem with the system.”
-New Kings Democrats, Mayor de Blasio is neither progressive nor effective. He needs to resign

Juneteenth will become a city holiday in 2021. (Marina Fang for HuffPost)

Photos: Juneteenth celebrations across the city. (Sophia Chang, photos by Angela Chalmondeley, Khaleeq Alfred, and Gretchen Robinette for Gothamist)

NYC Parks installed “Juneteenth Grove” at Cadman Plaza Park “in celebration of Juneteenth and to celebrate the homegoing of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor and countless others.” (Mary Kim for Brooklyn Heights Blog)

Downtown Brooklyn and Park Slope are getting new bike lanes this summer on Smith St, Fourth Ave, and Navy Street. (Kevin Duggan for Brooklyn Paper)

Another week and another local racist caught on camera. This time it was in Flushing Queens where a man with a face mask pulled down yelled slurs at a South Korean student inside a 7-Eleven. The NYPD’s Hate Crimes Task Force is investigating. (Allie Griffin for Queens Post)

It’s been 63 years since the legendary brawl at the Copacabana that involved six hall of fame Yankees and their wives while celebrating Billy Martin’s birthday. Finally, the truth has come out. (David Margolick for NY Times)

The Yankees and Mets have announced that their, uh, “spring” training will be happening in New York and not Florida. (Priscila Korb for Patch)

Is wearing a mask getting in your way of drinking? Check out Crook & Marker’s TasteMask, which includes a flap for a straw. (Bao Ong for The Out)

Thanks to reader Hannah for today’s featured photo!

The Briefly for June 8, 2020 – The “I Guess This Is Phase One?” Edition

Today’s daily NYC news digest: Phase one kicks off today, the mayor is forced to lift the city’s curfew early, the MTA’s plans for phase one, a protest of the mayor, and more

Are you absentee voting this month? (You should be absentee voting this month.) Here’s how to make sure your absentee vote counts. (Ethan Geringer-Sameth for Gotham Gazette)

The absentee ballot deadline was extended to June 23. Get your application in now. (Matt Troutman for Patch)

Here we go, phase one. Here’s what it means. (Brendan Krisel for Patch)

The mayor announced he would end the city’s curfew one day early because, according to him, there had been a night without violent protests. In the reality that the rest of us live in, a lawsuit from the NYCLU, the Legal Aid Society, the Thurgood Marchall Civil Rights Center, and the Center for Constitutional Rights were about to force the mayor to lift the curfew and three different district attorneys in the city refused to charge most protestors that were arrested. (Ali Tufan Koc and Daniel Maurer for Bedford + Bowery)

A protest of the mayor is expected on Monday morning (or was expected, depending on when you read this) to push de Blasio into actually enacting police reforms. The march, which includes members of the mayor’s administration, isn’t organized by the same people who wrote the open letter tot he mayor, but it shows how unified the city is in its disgust over the mayor’s ability to talk a lot and do very little. (Yoav Gonen for The City)

As Minneapolis already has, activists are calling on the NYC Department of Education to cut ties with the NYPD. Chancellor Richard Carranza, appointed by the mayor, does not favor a “counselors not cops” approach to school safety. Since 2014 the school safety budget has increased by 25% and while the school budget for next year is decreasing under the budget already revealed by the mayor, the budget for safety is increasing. (Alex Zimmerman for The City)

What can the city do with the NYPD’s $6 billion? Quite a bit. (Valeria Ricciulli for Curbed)

Thursday night’s NYPD ambush of peaceful protesters was, according to Commissioner Dermont Shea, “executed flawlessly.” It included beating and arresting legal observers, medics, pepper-spraying a pregnant woman, and featured Terence Monahan kneeling with protesters one moment and directing officers to arrest the protest’s leaders the next. The NYPD claimed that “interlopers” were to blame for the police violence but a video of what happened shows otherwise and the NYPD has yet to show any evidence of this. (Jake Offenhartz and Nick Pinto for Gothamist)

A look at the NYPD’s strategy of “kettling” protestors, which shows a shift in police tactics towards aggression. Of course, the mayor has defended this practice, saying it is sometimes necessary for public safety. I’m not sure which public he’s referring to. (Ali Watkins for NY Times)

Does the name Terence Monahan ring a bell? It should because he was the person in charge of the city’s response to protesters during the 2004 GOP convention. In 2004 the protesters had been told they could march and were then arrested en masse. Charges were dismissed against all 227 arrested. The city later settling a lawsuit with the protesters for $18 million. (Greg B. Smith for The City)

Terence Monahan has a legacy of brutality. (Peter Rugh for The Indypendent)

Governor Cuomo announced a “Say Their Name” package of bills which would criminalize making a false race-based 911 call, ban chokeholds, revise 50-1 (unknown what this means), and assign the Attorney General an independent prosecutor for matters related to the death of unarmed citizens caused by law enforcement. (Anna Quinn for Patch)

The state’s Black, Puerto Rican, Hispanic and Asian Legislative Caucus has their own package of 13 bills they’ve unveiled which also adds mandates for body cameras for state and MTA police, establishes strangulation as a crime mandates medical attention for people under arrest, and more. (Caroline Lewis for Gothamist)

We’re committed to seeing a shift of funding to youth services, to social services, that will happen literally in the course of the next three weeks, but I’m not going to go into detail because it is subject to negotiation and we want to figure out what makes sense.” -Mayor de Blasio, talking big, one more time. He says “literally in the course of the next three weeks” because it literally has to get done because of the city’s budget, not because he wants to enact reforms quickly. (Dana Rubenstein for NY Times)

Two NYPD officers were suspended for violence against protesters. One is the officer who pushed a woman to the ground and the other the officer who pulled down a protester’s face mask and pepper-sprayed him. Just two. (John Del Signore for Gothamist)

Next, suspend every cop who covered their badge number during the protests with the bullshit excuse of the covers being “mourning bands.” (Adam Nichols for Patch)

Photos: East Village storefronts show their support for Black Lives Matter. (EV Grieve)

In comparison, the award for “the shittiest tribute to victims of racial violence” goes to the Museum of Ice Cream’s “I Scream For…” painted boards. (Elie Perler for Bowery Boogie)

Returning to the subways today? Here’s what you need to know. (Christina Goldbaum for NY Times)

The MTA clearly has a plan for people who will be riding the subway. It may not be a perfect plan, but it’s a plan. The mayor? Come on, you know he doesn’t have a plan based in reality. (Benjamin Kabak for Second Ave Sagas)

“This week and going forward, you might notice some other helpful additions to your local station — like new hand sanitizer dispensers and new signs reminding you how to keep yourself safe. You’ll also see floor markings, floor decals, and new directions aimed at communicating with you clearly about how to safely move around our system.
-Sarah Feinberg, acting President of MTA New York City Transit for amNewyork Metro, MTA is glad to have you back for the NYC reopening

With June 8’s phase one reopening of the city, you might be asking a few questions that are closer to home, like “will my building’s gym/pool be opening soon?” Get ready for a complicated road back. (Joanne Kaufman for NY Times)

The city will begin testing sewage for Covid-19, to get an idea of how the virus is spreading hundreds or thousands of people at a time. (Anna Quinn for Patch)

Governor Cuomo signed a bill into a law that will grant death benefits to Covid-19 frontline workers’ families. (Emily Davenport for amNewYork Metro)

A peek into what remains of Park, a Chelsea restaurant that abruptly closed last year and appears to be slowly taken over by trees. (Michelle Young for Untapped Cities)

If you’re like me, at this point in the summer you’d have ridden the Coney Island Cyclone multiple times. If you’ve been missing the anticipation of the climb of the first hill and the exhilaration of the drop, these 360° videos of the Cyclone and Thunderbolt are gonna be as close as we can get for a while. (Amanda Hatfield for BrooklynVegan)

Last Wednesday night the city’s known Covid-19 death toll hit 0 for the first time since March 12. (Matt Troutman for Patch)

James Bennet, who oversaw the editorial pages of the NY Times, is out. The paper blames it on “a significant breakdown of our editorial process” because of the Senator Tom Cotton editorial which promoted violence against protesters. (Gus Saltonstall for Patch)

RIP Kanela, a red-headed Siberian husky and the unofficial mascot of Welcome2TheBronx. (Ed García Conde for Welcome2TheBronx)

In 1982, the MTA thought they could paint their cars brilliant white to prevent them from being spray painted. “The Great White Fleet” idea was as stupid as it sounds. (Kevin Walsh for Forgotten New York)

A bit of news that passed by in the insanity that was Memorial Day weekend and every single day since then, the City Council banned the use of the terms “alien” and “illegal immigrant” on official city documents. (Allie Griffin for Queens Post)

Central Park West’s mystery manhole cover. (Ephemeral New York)

Apartment Porn: A $3.5 million townhouse in Prospect Heights with outdoor space, amazing woodwork, and one of the most wildly-colored bathrooms I’ve ever seen. (Dana Schulz for 6sqft)

A list of lists: A roundup of NYC’s Black-owned restaurant lists. (Tanay Warerkar for Eater)

Thank you to reader Michael for today’s featured photo!

The Briefly for June 4, 2020 – The “Six Billion Dollars” Edition

Today’s daily NYC news digest: An open letter to the mayor from hundreds of current and former staffers makes four demands. Demand number one is to defund the NYPD. That and more.

Today – Low: 66˚ High: 81˚
Rain overnight.

Request an absentee ballot before June 16
Click and sign support for the repeal of 50-a
Donate to The Equal Justice Initiative and The Bail Project

The city remains on PAUSE, with 5/7 metrics met. We are expected to start phase one on June 8.

Sign the Black Lives Matter petition to #DefundPolice.

“It’s absolutely shameful, that in the wake of all of these protests, our mayor still clings to the notion that the NYPD’s massive budget doesn’t play a huge role in the inequities and racism that we see in this city” -Councilmember Carlina Rivera, underscoring the debate over the city’s budget and defunding the NYPD. A budget agreement is due at the end of June. (Gloria Pazmino for NY1)

Want to give money for bail funds but also want a pretty sweet rainbow cookie tote bag? Laura Chautin has you covered. (Emma Orlow for Time Out)

Photos: NYPD officers bludgeoned, pepper-sprayed, and picked fights with protesters marching peacefully. (Jake Offenhartz, Gwynne Hogan, Nick Pinto, and Sydney Pereira for Gothamist)

The story of the Brooklyn Bridge stampede from May 30, 1883. (Alex Wallach and Michelle Young for Untapped New York)

It took ONE day for Governor Cuomo to apologize to the NYPD for calling their response to rioters a disgrace. (Joseph Spector for USA Today)

“In a society in which leaders have little political appetite to tackle inequality or to address structural racism, and in a city that has become more unequal with COVID and may become more so, the choice to increase the number of MTA police and thus the policing of people of color — like George Floyd — is perversely sensible. It suggests that our policy makers have not only accepted the reality of structural inequality, but that they see their primary task as simply managing it.”
– Kaufi Attoh for Streetsblog, Protests Lay Bare Structural Racism in Mass-Transit Policing

Mayor de Blasio stood in front of us all and promised that internal NYPD investigations into excessive force during protests will proceed at a quicker pace, but his history with police reform says otherwise. (Samar Khurshid for Gotham Gazette)

The rules for everyone under curfew. Is this the “new normal” we keep hearing about? (Howard Halle for Time Out)

Here are the detailed curfew guidelines for restaurant workers. No Ubers between 8 and 12:30, no Citi Bikes or Revels, no specific rules for ID, no passing through roadblocks, and more. (Tanay Warerkar for Eater)

Do you know what pepper spray is good for? Potentially spreading Covid-19 among crowds, according to the chief of emergency medicine at NYU Langone Hospital – Brooklyn. (Virginia Breen for The City)

If phase one starts on June 8, phase 2 starts June 22 and with it a surprise, as outdoor dining at restaurants will be included. (Bao Ong for Time Out)

The city is poised to start phase one of reopening on Monday, but the mayor’s ideas are pure fantasy on how the MTA should operate. (Jose Martinez for The City)

How good design and “placemaking” can help the city ease into post-pandemic life. (Tucker Reed and J. Manuel Mansylla for amNewYork Metro)

Need a haircut? Keep it quiet, but there’s someone in Central Park giving haircuts. (Mike Mishkin for I Love the Upper West Side)

The city’s curfew is at 8 pm, but Citi Bikes are unavailable starting at 6 pm. Citi Bike made the announcement that the mayor’s office is forcing them to shut down two hours before the curfew starts. (Anna Quinn for Patch)

Video: Representative Yvette Clarke debates Adem Bunkeddeko and Isiah James ahead of the June 23 Democratic primary. (Emily Ngo for NY1)

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez endorsed Jamaal Bowman in the Democratic primary against longtime Democratic incumbent Rep. Eliot Engel in New York’s 16th congressional district. (David Giambusso for Politico)

How is Staten Island faring with the Covid-19 pandemic? It depends on which side of its Mason-Dixon line you live on. The northern part of Staten Island accounts for 40% of its population, but 54% of its Covid-19 cases. (Clifford Michel for The City)

$600 million of brand new subway cars were pulled from service this week after a car disconnected from the rest of the train at Chambers Street. These are the same cars that were pulled from service in January after their doors were opening when they shouldn’t have been. The cars, already defective twice, have cost the city $35 million in repairs and $300 million in lost labor. Almost a billion dollars for subway cars that don’t work. Perfect. (Adam Nichols for Patch)

There has been a sharp rise in glass recycling in the city than in years past. Our trash is tattling on us, and it turns out we’ve been drinking a lot of wine. (Anne Barnard, Azi Paybarah and Jacob Meschke for NY Times)

A new exhibition, titled “Monuments Now” is coming to Queens’s Socrates Sculpture Park this summer, bringing a brightly colored ziggurat, an obelisk that doubles as a BBQ, and a cenotaph frame. (Howard Halle for Time Out)

We used to be able to lay on a beach and wait for someone to offer us a concoction that was as strong as it was mysterious about its contents. The Nutcracker isn’t like to make a big comeback to beaches this year, but bars are now selling their own Nutcrackers you can take to go. (Daniel Maurer for Bedford + Bowery)

SummerStage is going digital this summer, starting June 6. (Emily Davenport for amNewYork Metro)

Thank you to reader Lisa for today’s featured photo!