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August 5, 2009

ESDC resists lawyer's request for AY costs and benefits; FOIL appeal filed

Atlantic Yards Report

There's no transparency like ESDC transparency.

Those testifying last week at the Atlantic Yards public hearing were not the only ones who want to learn how the Empire State Development Corporation (ESDC) calculates the costs and benefits from Forest City Ratner's AY plan.

Attorney George Locker, who represents rent-stabilized residents in two buildings in the Atlantic Yards footprint, has hit the wall in his Freedom of Information Law (FOIL) request for documents regarding any ESDC current cost-benefit analysis.

Last month, the ESDC denied Locker's request for such documents, saying they were exempt from disclosure. An agency may deny access to records that are inter-agency or intra-agency materials which are not statistical or factual tabulations or data, or not final agency policy or determinations.

Appeal filed

Locker recently filed an appeal with the ESDC general counsel, arguing that the documents requested are not exempt from production.

During an informational meeting July 22, ESDC Senior Counsel Steve Matlin asserted that "We’re constantly looking at that analysis and updating that analysis,” a statement belied by the absence of any new numbers in the 2009 Modified General Project Plan.


NoLandGrab: Call us crazy, but we're beginning to think that maybe the ESDC has never actually done an Atlantic Yards cost-benefit analysis.

Posted by eric at August 5, 2009 9:04 AM