Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Brodsky on West Side deal: subsidy info needed

From yesterday's New York Times, in an article headlined New Developer Signs $1 Billion Deal to Transform West Side Railyards:
“Until we get a handle on the level of subsidies involved, there’s no way to determine whether this is a good deal or a bad deal,” said Assemblyman Richard L. Brodsky, a Democrat from Westchester who is holding a hearing on West Side development on Friday.

Last week, I reported on similar comments. "Developers have learned the fight is about the subsidies," Brodsky said. "That distorting element is so powerful we don't know how much to give, what is proper." That, he said, makes it hard to assess "what exactly is the public good."

The same questions could be raised about the Atlantic Yards deal, where, for example, the amount of scarce housing bonds needed was not made public until after the project was approved.

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