NEW YORK — Mayor Adams on Monday defended his veto of the “ How Many Stops Act” as City Council leaders mounted a final internal lobbying push to line up the necessary support to override him.
The bill, which passed the Council with overwhelming support last month, would require NYPD officers to log basic information into a department database about all encounters they have with civilians that are investigative in nature. That’s an expansion of current law, which only requires cops to document encounters when there’s a reasonable suspicion of a crime in progress.
But the mayor, who vetoed the bill earlier this month, reiterated in a Monday morning appearance on WNYC that he’s concerned about the part of the legislation that’d place the new transparency requirements on so-called “Level 1” stops. Levels 1s can be conducted without a suspicion of a crime, and may involve encounters like asking a person on the street if they’ve seen a missing person.
While he voiced support for beefing up transparency around other forms of stops, Adams said that putting the documentation requirement on Level 1s would place an overly heavy bureaucratic burden on cops that’d distract them from actual police work.
“The Council had the right spirit, but the Level 1 stops is the step we are in opposition of,” he said.
City Council Speaker Adrienne Adams, who’s set to convene her chamber on Tuesday to vote to override the mayor’s veto, countered in a morning interview on NY1 that requiring reporting around Level 1s is critical for the city to get a complete picture of how the NYPD is conducting stops. The speaker argued that’s especially important at a time that the NYPD’s federal monitor says that unconstitutional stops of Black and brown New Yorkers remain common.
The speaker also said she is “very confident” the Council will be able to override the mayor when the chamber votes Tuesday afternoon.
“I’m not sure if minds were changed, I’m inclined to believe that opinions were already set,” she added.
The Council speaker needs at least 33 of her colleagues to join her in voting for an override to pull it off and enact the bill in the face of the mayor’s opposition. The bill passed with support from 35 members in December.
As the mayor and the speaker fought it out in dueling TV and radio appearances, talks continued behind closed doors to line up the necessary support to successfully override the veto, according to multiple Council sources familiar with the matter.
Manhattan Councilman Eric Bottcher, one of the few Democrats who voted against the bill in December, was leaning Monday afternoon toward flipping his view to vote in favor of the override, two sources said.
Bottcher did not immediately return a request for comment.