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Markowitz claims he doesn't know Rent-A-Center helps fund his concert series

There's an ongoing debate about rent-to-own companies like Rent-A-Center; proponents say they provide a needed service to those with little savings, while opponents say they're a ripoff.

(Here's criticism from Sen. Charles Schumer and a call for balance by the industry organization.)

So Council Members Charles Barron, Letitia James, and several organizations protested Borough President Marty Markowitz's acceptance of $25,000 in support from Rent-A-Center for his Martin Luther King, Jr. summer concert series, as reported in the Courier-Life chain. (Click on graphics to enlarge.)

James, at a recent City Council hearing, called the high fees "consumer loansharking."

Marty's defense

The newspaper reports:
When contacted, Markowitz said that he did not know that Rent-A-Center money helped fund his concert series.

He didn't?

Does he ever look at the series web site? (Did the Courier-Life reporter point that out?)

Markowitz did say he supports strengthening the laws that regulate the industry. At the very least, good regulation requires transparency on the part of the companies and some minimal vigilance on the part of the renters.

Markowitz could apply another form of minimal vigilance and at least know where he gets funding for his projects.


  1. Marty pleading ignorance? One of the first believable things I've heard him say all year


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