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May 23, 2007

The ironies of the CB 6 purge: Jerry Armer, flamethrower?

Atlantic Yards Report

Norman Oder provides some analysis of Borough President Marty Markowitz's purge of Brooklyn Community Board 6 of those who asked questions and delivered their informed opinions about Atlantic Yards:

One of those Markowitz removed was Jerry Armer, the board's chairman when it developed its Atlantic Yards response and a veteran of more than 20 years. Armer told the New York Observer that he was disappointed: “What we were doing was giving the community a voice and reflecting the community.” (CB 6 covers Park Slope, Boerum Hill, Gowanus, Carroll Gardens, and Red Hook.)

And Armer, who works for the MetroTech BID influenced by Atlantic Yards developer Forest City Ratner, is hardly a flamethrower. He participated in numerous meetings of the Brooklyn Borough Board Atlantic Yards Committee, cordially raising some worthy questions. He presided over relevant CB 6 meetings. He spoke courteously, even ponderously, in testimony to the Empire State Development Corporation.

As with most of the CB members, he kept his distance from the organized opposition to the project, hence the irony of the New York Post headline today, ARENA FOES SLAM DUNKED, and the Post's decision to quote only one person by name: Develop Don't Destroy Brooklyn (DDDB) spokesman Daniel Goldstein.
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The typically voluble Markowitz wouldn't comment to the Times about his action; that speaks volumes.

And what will Markowitz do about CB 6 member Louise Finney, a friend and former campaign treasurer? (Her term expires next year; here's the list of members.) Co-chair of the CB 6 Transportation Committee, Finney said last year: "The area they chose to analyze is way too small... You don't have to be a genius to know you should look at the BQE."

"This is difficult for me. It's a big step," said Finney, when voting last October for a Park Slope Civic Council resolution opposing Atlantic Yards as currently planned.. "Marty is a friend. But we represent Park Slope."

The payback in the Borough President's decision may be more symbolic than effective. Markowitz likely would prefer to see Goldstein gone from his residence in the AY footprint. But he had to settle for Armer.

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Posted by lumi at May 23, 2007 9:15 AM