Wednesday, February 01, 2012

Markowitz will promote Barclays Center hockey (exhibition game!) in State of the Borough, won't close door on mayoral run, but seems resigned to sitting it out; not sure "son" (gray parrot) understands his legacy

Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz, who gives his invitation-only State of the Borough address tonight, apparently will be promoting future events at the Barclays Center.

As Newsday first reported yesterday, the Islanders will play the New Jersey Devils in a preseason game on October 2; it's the first NHL game in Brooklyn.

(Would you believe the New York Times devoted a Metro section article to the game, Testing the Ice Where Hockey Was an Afterthought, with credits to four reporters? The Times sure didn't cover the failure to provide the promised Transportation Demand Management plan, or the failure to provide promised larger affordable housing units.)

According to a Courier Life report issued before the official announcement, he indicated he'd be pushing for NHL hockey. Markowitz was appearing at the Bay Ridge Community Council's Presidents' Luncheon, held, not coincidentally, at the Bay Ridge Manor, long owned by state Senator Marty Golden and his family.

His political future

Also, Markowitz can be seen discussing his political future in a mid-December 2011 interview with Roberto Perez of The Perez Notes. (Last month I analyzed his comments about Atlantic Yards.)

Markowitz, asked whether he'd run for mayor, sounds ambivalent, unwilling to close the door--even as announced candidates like City Council Speaker Christine Quinn have maxed out fundraising. "I still have a little window of review," he suggests.



Questions of legacy

"The only thing that motivates me is not a legacy," he says, at about 1:37. "I must tell you, it's my wife and I, my son"--he smiles--"is almost an 11-year-old African gray parrot. So I'm not sure that he'll understand my legacy. But the incentive for me is really to do great things for New York."

(I know some people consider their pets--often dogs--their "children," but isn't it a little icky, especially when the animal isn't even a mammal?)

"The good news is this city is not dependent on any one mayor," he said. "I know I could do a lot of good. But I have to weigh that with the cost to myself, both in terms of my psyche, and in terms of my health, and the current political climate"--he frowns--"in terms of service to New York. So there's a lot of things in there. But"--he smiles again, ever the pol--"thank you for asking me that question."

He referenced "the political climate" with a tinge of disgust, perhaps a reference to the recent tough reporting on his fundraising for his charities.

"If I was 50 years old, you wouldn't be asking me this question," he says a bit later. "I'd be a candidate. I'll be almost 69 years of age should I win [in 2013]."

So, the question is: what will Markowitz do after he leaves office? Will he simply retire? Or will he snag a job, say, promoting a regional center for immigrant investors, or at the Barclays Center he helped bring?

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