August 3, 2009
Stepping out, and stepping up: the absence of de Blasio and Yassky; the louder voices from Brennan and BrooklynSpeaks members
Atlantic Yards Report
Wanna know who is really for and against Bruce Ratner's controversial Atlantic Yards project? Never mind the stump speeches, Norman Oder has a quick check-up on which politicians showed up and which politicians stayed home:
Notable absences at the two-day Atlantic Yards public hearing held last week by the Empire State Development Corporation (ESDC) were two Council Members, Bill de Blasio of the 39th District and David Yassky of the 33rd District, whose districts border the AY footprint.
(Whatever their other obligations, they could have sent surrogates, as did some loyal elected officials in Forest City Ratner's camp.)
As I've noted, de Blasio has completely muted his criticism of Atlantic Yards, and likely will not resume, given endorsements in his race for Public Advocate by several AY-supporting unions and Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz.
Yassky, however, had kept up criticism until fairly recently, but not after he was endorsed by Markowitz.
Sure, I'm speculating here on the political calculus, but consider that both de Blasio and Yassky, in their campaigns, stress independence and fiscal rectitude.
NoLandGrab: de Blasio has hardly wavered from his original position, that Atlantic Yards is an opportunity to build a lot of affordable housing (even though the devil is in the details). However, the hallmark of Yassky's political career has been to stand with his constituents and then abandon them to strike an ineffectual compromise and declare a win for the community.
Posted by lumi at August 3, 2009 5:37 AM