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August 6, 2008

Governor Paterson questioned on Atlantic Yards

In a WCBS interview with NY State Governor Paterson (audio) , the interviewer posted a question from a listener concerning Atlantic Yards. Paterson hedged well enough to assure critics and supporters that he cares:

Q: With the state in such dire fiscal straits why are you supporting this costly project (which according to this writer may end up costing the state and new york city about 2 billion in subsidies and tax breaks)?

A: "There is a point that the listener correctly has addressed. That if it starts to become too costly, a lot of these projects that we were for, we might have to change our mind. To this point we don't think that we are there with the Atlantic Yards and continue to try to help them."

Atlantic Yards Report, In radio interview, Paterson hedges on AY, whiffs on naming rights
Watchdog Norman Oder noticed Paterson's hedge as well:

Does "continue to try to help" mean simply moving ahead or does it mean additional subsidies, which Forest City Ratner seeks?

Paterson also muddied the waters on the naming-rights issue:

During the interview, Paterson said he was opposed to selling state assets but not averse to leasing them. Asked about naming rights, as in “the Company Y state office building," Paterson responded, "Well, we’ve got [the new Mets stadium] CitiField"--he chuckled—“and that might be a way to do it, but I wouldn’t want to change the names of any of the facilities that we have honored great New Yorkers in the past…”

Still, the governor said, he was open to more options than previously.

The fact is, “we” don’t have CitiField, nor the Barclays Center, the corporate name of the planned Atlantic Yards arena. The naming rights go to the team owners.

Posted by lumi at August 6, 2008 5:27 AM