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October 10, 2010

AY Report: NYTimes and Brooklyn Paper Asleep At The Wheel For EB-5 Story

Atlantic Yards Report

Where's the Brooklyn Paper on the "green cards for investors" story? And the Times?

There's been a lot of news about Atlantic Yards in the past week or so, including coverage by the New York Post of Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz's planned (and aborted) trip to China in support of Forest City Ratner's "green cards for investors" scheme, and the New York Daily News of the claims behind the scheme and the construction jobs at the site.

The New York Times, which has a tiny Brooklyn bureau and a real estate/development reporter far more concerned with Stuyvesant Town, has ignored the stories. Dismaying, but not surprising.

It's more surprising that the Brooklyn Paper (and its now-mirror, the Courier-Life chain) has missed those stories.

(The EB-5 story has been picked up by a couple of blogs devoted to the topic.)

Selective coverage

It's not that the Brooklyn Paper doesn't cover Atlantic Yards--the lead story this week (PDF) is on crowd control at the planned plaza--it's that they're way behind others.

Once upon a time (2007) the Brooklyn Paper earned awards for its aggressive coverage of Atlantic Yards. Not anymore.

Is it the ownership by Rupert Murdoch's News Corporation? (How can it be--after all, the Murdoch-owned Post has covered the story.)

Atlantic Yards fatigue?

Failure to read other newspapers and blogs?

Short staff?

Unwillingness to cover stories that others break first? (If so, that's just not serving the reader.)

Times criticizes Paladino for creating only 25 direct jobs, still ignores EB-5 story regarding Atlantic Yards, with zero direct jobs

From a New York Times editorial yesterday headlined Mr. Paladino and the System, a critique of Republican gubernatorial nominee Carl Paladino:

A look at his record as a developer shows that he has been an eager recipient of just the sort of government largess he so bitterly condemns and a generous contributor to politicians who can best do him favors.

His flourishing real estate business was stoked with tax breaks, multimillion-dollar state leases and government land giveaways.

...He won $3 million in tax reductions for his renovations, but, as The Daily News recently reported, only 25 jobs were directly created. His campaign has said that that does not count the jobs indirectly produced by his tenants, but a large number of those tenants were state agencies, which have paid him tens of millions of dollars in rent over the years.

Ok, and what about the low-cost or no-cost financing sought by Forest City Ratner, which, as the Daily News recently reported, won't directly create any jobs?

The Times has ignored the entire EB-5 story.

Posted by steve at October 10, 2010 9:23 AM