Friday, August 24, 2007

Daily News: Fort Greene firm rips city's seizure of longtime office

The Daily News covers the city plan to destroy a successful business. "Fort Greene firm rips city's seizure of longtime office" reports:
A Fort Greene financial services firm employing 150 workers will have to move after the city seized its five-story building to make way for a new cultural center and housing.

Longtime employees of the Track Data Corp. were stung Monday by a decision to destroy the business' 95 Rockwell Place headquarters and build the new facilities in its place.

"[The Brooklyn Academy of Music] had periodically approached us over the years, but they were never willing to pay us enough money to leave," said Track Data spokesman Rafi Reguer. "Obviously someone had a better idea, which is have the government force us to move, which they've done."

Eminent domain is the government's power to confiscate private property for the public good, and in this case it looks like someone at the NYC Economic Development Corporation (EDC) determined that eliminating jobs is in the "public" interest. It makes you wonder what "public" they are working for.

The EDC wants to destroy a successful company to support a cultural center, yet on Duffield Street, they want to destroy the cultural attraction (the Abolitionist homes) to build a parking lot, and in other places they are destroying parking lots to build luxury apartments. The Downtown Brooklyn redevelopment plan was supposed create jobs, but the EDC does not seem interested in that goal.