« Forest City known for tough political skills around region | Main | Betsy Gotbaum's birthday present for Bruce Ratner: a letter to the Times »

February 25, 2012

Ex-Yonkers Council Member: "Forest City Ratner games the system and does not play by the rules"

Atlantic Yards Report

Well, the New York City press was surprisingly quiet on Friday regarding the Yonkers corruption trial--only one mainstream article, from the Post, though the Times had two reporters in the audience--but the Journal News, which covers Yonkers and the region, at least has been giving the issue, and the trial, steady coverage.

Today the Journal News offers an overview article on the developer, Forest City known for tough political skills around region. The toughest critic is a local:

Forest City Ratner has “little or no regard for public opinion,” said John Murtagh, a former Yonkers councilman and opponent of the Ridge Hill project who recently testified in the trial. “Their entire business model is to exploit every tax loophole and taxpayer-funded subsidy that they can. Promise the world and deliver far less, and do it all by manipulation.”

Among those praising the company is Assemblyman Joseph Lentol, D-Brooklyn, who helped arrange the developer's meeting with Zehy Jereis, who's charged with bribing Council Member Sandy Annabi to get Ridge Hill passed, and soon got a no-show job with the developer: “The company is a good one as far as I’m concerned. They definitely have a good track record as developers as far as efficiency and getting things done.”

But efficiency and getting things done also have to do with tactics, and I'm quoted in the article as saying, “Forest City Ratner, however community-friendly it aims to appear, plays hardball when it counts.”

link

Posted by steve at February 25, 2012 11:04 PM