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The Blasio's Back: Here Are 6 Major Problems with Facing



[Readmoreabout the mayor's decision on Friday to end his bid for the Oval Office.]

After five months of a presidential campaign that generated more shrugs than buzz, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced on Friday that he would end his candidacy and focus on his full-time job running New York City.

The clock is running out on Mr. de Blasio's time in office – term limits prevented him from running for re-election in 2021. As he ventured out on the campaign trail, some New Yorkers complained that their lame-duck mayor's attention often seemed focused elsewhere.

But as Mr . de Blasio returns to New York, he still has more than two more years in office to build on the progressive track record he promoted in states far from Gracie Mansion and tackle problems confronting his constituents.

Here are some of the most prominent issues that await Mr. de Blasio.

The mayor was frequently criticized at the national stage for his handling of policing in the city, from criminal justice reform advocates and officers themselves.

As he returns full-time to City Hall, Mr. de Blasio will need to address a restless rank and file.

Central among them: a number of recent suicides that have left the Police Department reeling. Officials want Mr. de Blasio to push through a proposed bill that would direct the department to make more mental-health resources available to officers.

Throughout his presidential bid, Mr. de Blasio was criticized for his handling of the case involving Daniel Pantaleo, the police officer whose chokehold led to Eric Garner's death in 2014.

When Mr. de Blasio declined to support calls for firing Mr. Pantaleo, the mayor was criticized for failing to take responsibility after he said he would let the disciplinary process play out.

At the same time, officers were furious when Mr. de Blasio promised justice for Mr. Garner on the debate stage just weeks before Mr. Pantaleo was fired by police commissioner James P. O'Neill. – Edgar Sandoval

The mayor sought to anchor his brief campaign with the city's universal prekindergarten program, his signature and arguably most successful initiative.

But while Mr. de Blasio traversed the country, the conversation at home began to test the limits of his willingness to tackle inequality.

A simmering conversation about desegregation boiled over, and a mayor who pledged to "shake the foundations" of the nation's largest public school system has instead watched activists on the left and his own schools chancellor, Richard A. Carranza, call for more sweeping – and polarizing – changes than Mr. de Blasio appeared willing to support.

Mr. de Blasio now faces questions about structural inequities, particularly a two-tiered system that allows families with means to escape poor-performing traditional schools by enrolling in more selective schools and gifted and talented programs.

A panel the mayor commissioned recommended eliminating gifted programs, along with selective admissions policies for some middle and high schools, and instead creating more magnet schools and enrichment programs.

A debate over that proposal is sure to dominate the conversation, but Mr. de Blasio said he will not make any decisions about it this year.

The mayor also has not announced a replacement for his $ 773 million school improvement program, known as Renewal, which did not achieve the results that had been promised. Education officials said there may be no replacement, which is sure to prompt questions about how Mr. de Blasio intends to help students mired in low-performing schools. – Eliza Shapiro

Mr. de Blasio has struggled to respond to a growing street safety crisis in the city, and there is a sense that his signature policy to reduce traffic fatalities is faltering.

Mr. de Blasio faces an uphill battle around living conditions in the nation's largest public housing system, which is home to one in 14 city residents.

The underfunded agency that oversees public housing, the New York City Housing Authority, needs more than $ 32 billion to repair unreliable elevators, outdated boilers and faulty roofs, which have left the city's 176,000 apartments with leaks, mold and widespread heat and hot water outages.

The situation grew so dire that the federal government threatened to take over the agency and intervened earlier this year, appointing an independent monitor to supervise the agency, known as NYCHA.


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