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August 19, 2009

Brodsky, Perkins fire back at objections to public authority reform raised by Paterson aide; are authorities really checked by elected officials?

Atlantic Yards Report

In a scorching letter issued yesterday, Assemblyman Richard Brodsky and state Senator Bill Perkins slammed an attempt to gut public authorities reform legislation and charged that objections raised in a memo by Peter Kiernan, Counsel to Governor David Paterson, would gut authority reform.

Kiernan’s memo was dated August 14 but released yesterday by the legislators, who, protesting that no objections were raised while the bill was pending in the legislature, promised a detailed reply.

Notably Kiernan suggests, unreliably, that the elected officials serve as a sufficient check on authorities, and proposes that, in lieu of a requirement that property be sold at market rates, there be greater disclosure, including the appraised value.

While this would be fall short of the provisions in the bill, recommended by a bipartisan commission appointed by former Gov. George Pataki, it nonetheless would represent somewhat more disclosure than emerged in June when the Metropolitan Transportation Authority approved a revised deal with Forest City Ratner for the Vanderbilt Yard.

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NoLandGrab: Yes, that's right, the people who direct their appointees on the boards of public authorities to carry out their bidding and approve crooked deals like Atlantic Yards are the very same people who are going to act as a check against the abuses of public authorities. Excellent plan!

Is it any wonder that New York State's government is widely viewed as the nation's most dysfunctional? Please contact Governor Paterson today and tell him to sign the Public Authorities Reform Bill.

Posted by eric at August 19, 2009 10:10 AM