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March 16, 2008

Press Release: CBID PRESIDENT'S STATEMENT ON THE IMPENDING RESIGNATION OF GOVERNOR ELIOT SPITZER AND THE ASCENSION OF HON. DAVID PATERSON TO THE GOVERNORSHIP OF NEW YORK STATE

Central Brooklyn Independent Democrats

CBID would like to take this opportunity to highlight some issues for Governor Paterson's immediate attention.

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Second, we are aware of the New York State's desire to aggressively pursue affordable housing for New Yorkers and we applaud this. Given the state of our economy and other considerations, now is the time for the new Paterson administration to reconsider its support of and participation in the Atlantic Yards development project in Brooklyn. This is clearly not the time for very questionable expenditures at the state and City level to take place on a project fraught with legal, practical and moral challenges. We urge Governor Paterson to place a moratorium on all state support of Atlantic Yards until and unless all environmental and community issues have been addressed and until more critical budget issues, such as the education and health care crises, have been resolved.

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[The entire press release after the jump]

CBID PRESIDENT'S STATEMENT ON THE IMPENDING RESIGNATION OF GOVERNOR ELIOT SPITZER AND THE ASCENSION OF HON. DAVID PATERSON TO THE GOVERNORSHIP OF NEW YORK STATE:

"Out of tragedy emerges a new and worthy champion for New York State"

Chris Owens, newly elected President of the Central Brooklyn Independent Democrats (CBID), today congratulated Lieutenant Governor David Paterson on his impending ascension to the position of Governor of the State of New York. Paterson will become Governor this coming Monday, March 17, following the resignation of the current Governor, Eliot Spitzer.

"Recent events remind us how the ship of scandal leaves many victims in its wake. It was only a few years ago that our nation suffered the impeachment of President Clinton for perjury and obstruction of justice relating to a sex scandal. The memories and hurt linger, even now. This week, New York State has suffered a similar tragedy -- another violation of both the public's faith and the private trust of loved ones. The Central Brooklyn Independent Democrats wish the entire Spitzer family peace and love during this troubled time and in the future.

Yet out of tragedy emerges a new and worthy champion for New York State. New Yorkers are indeed fortunate that the incoming Governor is a capable, wise and experienced individual. David Paterson, born here in Brooklyn, is known by all as a compassionate leader and a change agent. For everyone, there is now healing that needs to take place. There is work to be done. The people's business must move forward and Governor David Paterson will do an outstanding job. We congratulate David Paterson and wish him and his family the best in their new roles.

CBID would like to take this opportunity to highlight some issues for Governor Paterson's immediate attention.

First, we urge the Governor to support education at the State level, and to intervene immediately and get New York City to stop its devastating cuts to the education budget. There is no investment equal to the investment in our children and education, in general. It is time for New York State to let Mayor Bloomberg know that there are performance expectations that cannot come close to being met if education budget cuts take place. And, furthermore, we urge Governor Paterson to make clear that the continuation of "Mayoral control" of schools after 2009 is tied to greatly improved communication with and involvement of parents and communities in the education of our children.

Second, we are aware of the New York State's desire to aggressively pursue affordable housing for New Yorkers and we applaud this. Given the state of our economy and other considerations, now is the time for the new Paterson administration to reconsider its support of and participation in the Atlantic Yards development project in Brooklyn. This is clearly not the time for very questionable expenditures at the state and City level to take place on a project fraught with legal, practical and moral challenges. We urge Governor Paterson to place a moratorium on all state support of Atlantic Yards until and unless all environmental and community issues have been addressed and until more critical budget issues, such as the education and health care crises, have been resolved.

Third, New York State has a positive role to play in protecting residents from losing their homes to foreclosure. We urge Governor Paterson to express his support for the moratorium on foreclosures set forth in legislation authored by New York State Assemblymember Jim Brennan (D-Brooklyn). People across the state need an effective champion, and the mortgage and credit crises beg for Paterson's strong leadership.

Fourth, during his time in the State Senate and as Lieutenant Governor, David Paterson has always taken a strong interest in environmental issues – and we are pleased. In Brooklyn, a pressing environmental issue is the status of the Gowanus Canal. Given the fragile wetlands ecology, the underlying toxicity of the area, and the complexity inherent to brownfield cleanup, we call upon the incoming Governor to protect current and future residents along the Gowanus Canal by insisting on the adoption of a well-supervised master plan jointly agreed upon by Federal (EPA and the Army Corps of Engineers), State (DEC) and City (DEP, DCP) agencies before any rezoning is allowed to go forward – piecemeal otherwise.

There are, of course, numerous additional issues that need to be addressed. In these difficult times, with budget negotiations already taking place, we are highlighting these four as examples of matters requiring the full focus of our new Governor, David Paterson."

Posted by steve at March 16, 2008 7:41 AM