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BatteryPark.TV was the first editorial page to urge for the closure of the state-run Battery Park City Authority (BPCA), which is nothing but a slush fund of favors for the governor. The estimated 13,000 residents of BPC pay the highest property taxes (PILTOT fees, ground rent, and facility fees) in the city, yet appointed, unelected, state officials decide how that money is spent. It is taxation without representation, and a haven for corruption.
Now, State Senator Dan Squadron has publicly called for the closure of the BPCA as we know it and replaced with a board controlled by the city and state. He cites the recent scandals of the Mehiel BPCA administration, which include the eviction of Mike Fortenbaugh from the marina, the firing of Tessa Huxley and the downsizing of the BPC Parks Conservancy staff, and the lack of any local representation on the BPCA board.
Squadron also writes, “City control can also better ensure that surpluses generated from B.P.C. PILOTs (payment in lieu of taxes) are not raided to close unrelated budget caps. That can’t be how state and city budgets are balanced.”.
BatteryPark.TV agrees with Mr. Squadron’s points. The BPCA has to go.
The BPCA is also a magnate for state corruption. The staff are paid $200,000 to do nothing, often having no experience at their jobs. Every position is a favor doled out by the governor which generates campaign donations. Every RFP contract is given to cronies of the state as well.
Most residents of BPC are opposed to this idea of closing down the BPCA, fearing that the parks will go downhill in quality. These are just unfounded worries and typical fear of change when a big move like this is proposed.
Folks, it cannot get any worse than it is now. Mehiel’s BPCA is gutting the parks as you read this. Almost all of your tax dollars are being siphoned off by the city to pay for things that have nothing to do with our community.
Wake up! We need change.
Start attending the BPCA monthly meetings. Send letters to your elected officials. Get involved.