08 May 2009

In Search of Courageous Leadership in the City

And while we're sounding off on the public trust, let me also weigh in on the MTA and the Port Authority.

I continue to read about, with great sorrow, the lack of real courageous decision-making when it comes to these agencies oversight of the Transit System and, in the case of the Port Authority, Ground Zero.

First, the MTA. I was truly disappointed that the state and the MTA couldn't come to a better budget agreement and have passed a large part of the burden on to those who actually use mass transit. I think there is more will in this city for putting a toll on the bridges between Brooklyn and Manhattan and we should be demanding more of it. The benefits--income, environment, safer streets--far outweigh the downside. With whole cities closing down because of bankruptcies of the auto-industry, it seems radically counter-intuitive to enable more driving in a densely populated metropolis with a vast rail system. NOW IS THE TIME in our city and country to make these tough choices.

The Times has an editorial today, worth reading here, about the loggerheads that the MTA and developer Larry Silverstein seem to be at. This is simply inexcusable and should demand the attention of Mayor Bloomberg and Governors Patterson and Corzine immediately. Whatever power these elected officials have to force through a solution as soon as possible is greatly in demand. What other city in the world would languish with this lack of progress in an open pit, which remains a graveyard, for nearly 8 years?

People refer to New York as the Greatest City in the World. Well, "great" has many dimensions. And this lack of progress is a great injustice and a great embarrassment to the agencies and developers in charge.

Letters? Phone calls? Any readers out there know who's organizing around this? What a shame on the reputation of our City.


Anonymous said...

Hi Andy:

One of my closest friends is the labor arbitration judge who knows the players in this stuff intimately. He has very strong, informed opinions about why things are such a mess. He deals with the politics of it all the time.

He's a good guy, Jewish.

I just say that because if you want to get more involved, or have a Q&A about the inner workings, maybe you could have him come and speak one night.

I'd put you in touch with him.

Just a thought.

David S

Andy Bachman said...

Hi David

Great idea. That works for me. Please put us in touch.

Shabbat Shalom


Anonymous said...

Will do. I will talk to him and get back to you.