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January 29, 2007

Roger Green, CBN, & $100K--an alternative sequence

Atlantic Yards Report attempts to establish a timeline of events that may or may not have led to former NY Assemblymember Roger Green's withholding of $100K to the Council of Brooklyn Neighborhoods.

Does Green's explanation to the Brooklyn Papers, "that he withdrew his support for CBN’s request because of hurtful, racially charged remarks by members and supporters of CBN and project opponents," make sense? Especially since the reasons he cites primarily occurred before he agreed to the funding?

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NoLandGrab: Apparently, we have some explaining to do.

Atlantic Yards Reporter Norman Oder examines one of Roger Green's references, where, in September, 2005, we called the Ratner Community Benefits Agreement a "Cadillac Buying Allowance."

The joke was that one signatory to the Atlantic Yards C.B.A., James Caldwell, was seen around the neighborhood sporting a new Cadillac, just months after signing on the dotted line and around the same time as documents were uncovered indicating that Caldwell's group, Brooklyn United for Innovated Local Development, was receiving financial support from Ratner (despite protestations to the contrary).

So, on behalf of James Caldwell, we'd like to apologize that he played so close to stereotype that we couldn't resist a pot shot.

We actually have no idea whether or not Caldwell got the new set of wheels because he collects a salary from the organization funded by Ratner. However, people of all stripe were astonished that he would drive his new luxury car around the neighborhood while championing jobs at Atlantic Yards that he hopes will go to unemployed residents living in the surrounding community.

Caldwell's actions just seemed thoughtless and insensitive at the time, especially after his own joke about local anti-traffic-congestion activists vs. residents who can't even afford a car. But if a community leader like Roger Green thinks otherwise, we'll mull it over.

Posted by lumi at January 29, 2007 8:18 AM