Mayor Eric Adams insisted Thursday that changing the state’s controversial bail reform laws — which has effectively been blocked by Gov. Kathy Hochul and Albany’s two Democratic legislative leaders — is just “one river” that feeds into his extensive proposal aimed at solving the rampant violence in the Big Apple.
“I gave a very extensive layout — and for whatever reason everyone is attached to one piece of it — that is one river,” griped Adams when asked about resistance from Albany’s three leaders to amending the state’s controversial 2019 bail laws during an off-topic Q&A at LaGuardia Airport.
“I keep saying, and I really need us to wrap our heads around: the problem of violence is several rivers that’s feeding this crisis. Now, if you want to stay on one river, that’s not going to solve this.”
Adams laid out his top ideas to stop crime Monday in the wake of the Harlem shooting that led to the deaths of two NYPD officers, which included calling on Hochul and the Democrat-controlled legislature to change the bail laws by granting judges more control over when they set bail when deciding whether or not a defendant is potentially dangerous.
He also said he wants to alter the 2017 “Raise the Age” law to get illegal guns out of the hands of kids under the age of 18.
“Now we have the DA’s — I laid it out — we have the courts. We have the federal government. We have our lawmakers in the state and the city council. I gave them the information,” he continued.
“Now, it’s up to them to say, “Let’s look at this guy that has been a reformer, and a law enforcement officer, and let’s look at what he’s saying and I’m going to sit down and speak with each entity and say, ‘this is the information I have, what ‘Raise the Age’ is doing.”
But Adams said his ideas come from his 20-plus years of experience in government, as a former cop and now, as mayor.
“Looking at dangerousness is doing; what we’re doing in our jails. That’s my job to do. And that’s what I did. Now it’s up to them to determine what they want to do with the report that I put out,” he said.
The plan was swiftly met with opposition by Albany leaders — state Sen. Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins (D-Westchester) and Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie (D-The Bronx) — who said so far, state data doesn’t prove there’s a need for a change.
Hochul has also aligned herself with Stewart-Cousins and Heastie for now, saying she won’t “cave to pressure” to amend the bail laws without a full-fledged analysis of statistics.
“There’s opportunities to have these conversations with the mayor, as well as with the legislature as the session unfolds on any reforms that are recommended,” she said Wednesday during a press conference ahead of the first meeting of a newly formed Interstate Task Force on Illegal Guns, which is a key tenet of her state budget proposal.
Meanwhile, Long Island Democratic Rep. and gubernatorial candidate Tom Suozzi slammed Hochul’s stance as a “mistake” during a separate Zoom press conference Thursday.
“I think that the governor is certainly making a mistake by not standing up to try and protect public safety,” he seethed.
“She made a mistake by not speaking out against the Manhattan DA, that he’s not going to prosecute certain crimes,” he added, criticizing Hochul’s refusal to call outright for the embattled Manhattan DA Alvin Bragg’s removal for his soft on crime policies, as reported exclusively by The Post.
New York changed the state’s bail laws first in 2019 — and then amended in 2020 — by barring judges from setting bail for most misdemeanors and non-violent felonies.
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