De Blasio to Announce NYPD Commissioner Pick Next Week, He Says

By Colby Hamilton on November 27, 2013 3:21pm 

 Mayor-elect Bill de Blasio and his wife Chirlane McCray volunteer at a food pantry in Bed-Stuy ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday on Wednesday, November 27, 2013.
Mayor-elect Bill de Blasio and his wife Chirlane McCray volunteer at a food pantry in Bed-Stuy ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday on Wednesday, November 27, 2013.
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DNAinfo/Colby Hamilton

BED-STUY — Mayor-elect Bill de Blasio threw cold water on buzz Wednesday that he'd tapped Bill Bratton to return to his post as NYPD commissioner, saying the choice won't be made until next week.

“I have not picked anyone. I’m not having any final conversations with any candidates,” de Blasio told reporters as he and his wife Chirlane McCray arrived to hand out turkeys to those in need at the Bed-Stuy Campaign Against Hunger food pantry.

But de Blasio said the mystery wouldn't last long — adding that the public could expect the names of commissioners to be announced late next week.

Earlier reports had quoted police sources saying Bratton was in the lead over rivals Police Chief Phillip Banks III and First Deputy Police Commissioner Rafael Pineiro. In an interview with Politicker Wednesday, Bratton confirmed that the reports he was set to take his old job were inaccurate.

De Blasio also fleshed out his plans to push his signature policy initiative for universal pre-kindergarten and expanded after school programs for city students forward. De Blasio said plans were in the works to create a campaign to push Albany lawmakers — whose support is needed to raise tax rates — on the plan.

De Blasio pointed to a Quinnipiac poll released on Wednesday showing nearly three-quarters of New York State voters in the survey supported raising takes to pay for expanded early childhood education.

“I think it’s a message to everyone in Albany that there’s extraordinary support for this,” de Blasio said.

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