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July 19, 2007

Revamping Empire State Development: stop playing politics, says report

Several readers sent in the link for an article in The NY Sun about the release of a report on the Empire State Development Corporation. Since the article didn't contain anything pointing to Atlantic Yards or the process for approving development projects, we left it on the cutting room floor until someone had actually read the report.

Guess who read it first (again).

From Norman Oder's Atlantic Yards Report:

The focus, in press coverage, was on technical fixes and a failed job-creation program. Only a close look at the report shows that, in key places, the analysts blame certain ESD/ESDC failures on "political patronage," "political convenience," and the "practice of favoring political over economic criteria."

In other words, a report commissioned by the administration of new Gov. Eliot Spitzer, a Democrat, takes strong issue with the practices of ESD/ESDC under longtime Gov. George Pataki, a Republican.

The report doesn't mention Atlantic Yards, but there's certainly evidence that the ESDC's board, which I described as "team players and big donors," didn't closely scrutinize the project when it was approved last November.

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Posted by lumi at July 19, 2007 9:03 AM