Saturday, July 21, 2007

Round up of press criticism of public authorities & AKRF

Another week, another scandal. The Empire State Development Corporation (the state agency, which is not the same as the NYC Economic Development Corporation, which is in charge of destroying the Duffield Street homes) got in trouble again for the "practice of favoring political over economic criteria" and for conflicts of interest with firm like our friends AKRF.

The recent revelations were released in a report by A. T. Kearny, and were covered by:

The Council of Brooklyn Neighborhoods released a related statement: AKRF-ESDC-FCRC Connections Raise Questions About Objectivity of "Atlantic Yards" Environmental Review. The Brooklyn Daily Eagle followed up with an article: Consulting Firm Counts Both Developer and State As Clients on Atlantic Yards.

All of this raises questions of the credibility of the public authorities to use eminent domain for public purposes. The EDC admits that Duffield Street was home to Abolitionists, and it offers vague benefits of their proposed parking lot. The ESDC has been caught playing politics with their friends AKRF, and it looks like the same thing is happening on Duffield Street.