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November 13, 2008

Did the state try to gain any value from arena naming rights? Apparently not

Atlantic Yards Report

Norman Oder tries to get at whether or not New York State even tried to get a piece of the naming rights for the Atlantic Yards arena, but finds that State and City agencies are not very forthcoming with answers. [Answer redacted]

Yesterday, Gov. David Paterson proposed $5.2 billion in budget cuts over the next 16½ months, with reductions in school aid, increased tuition at city and state universities, and reduced Medicaid reimbursements, among other things.

Perhaps administration officials--many of whom were not in charge at the time, actually--are wondering why exactly their predecessors allowed Forest City Ratner to claim the entire value of naming rights for the Barclays Center arena.

In response to a Freedom of Information Law request, documents received from the Empire State Development Corporation (ESDC) indicated that no effort was made to retain any such value, though at one point, a Forest City Ratner executive indicated anxiety about the developer being "punished" for the naming rights deal.

Though the documents are scant, in several places they were redacted; the ESDC cited exemptions that allow agencies to deny access to records that are inter-agency or intra-agency materials which are not final agency policy or determinations and instructions to staff that that affect the public, among other things.


NoLandGrab: As far as those budget cuts go, it doesn't appear that Bruce Ratner has yet had to tighten his belt even one notch. What a surprise.

Posted by eric at November 13, 2008 9:57 AM