Editorial: Same Old Story in Budget Deal

The City Council approved a $66 billion budget Wednesday afternoon, which avoided massive teacher layoffs, cuts to civil services such as libraries and the closing of 20 fire companies throughout the city. All without raising taxes.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg joined city politicians on Friday to announce the new agreement, where they congratulated themselves for making tough choices to pass an effective, on-time budget.

Who are we kidding? It’s same story every year. Bloomberg announces in early spring that the city is on the verge of financial doom and threatens to cut every non-essential service possible. Protests and rallies are held throughout the city, and by late June concessions and compromises are reached.

And with a $5 billion projected deficit for next year’s fiscal budget, we’re willing to bet the same song and dance will be played again.

Bloomberg ran for a third term because he said the city needed his financial expertise. So far, we haven’t seen him perform any admirable feats of fiscal cunning. We have, however, seen him oversee the disastrous CityTime project, which has cost the city nearly $800 million.

It’s clear Bloomberg has no respect for his fellow New Yorkers. Perhaps we should continue to rally against Bloomberg, and maybe next year he’ll come to the negotiating table with clear ideas to move the city forward.

Bloomberg seems to bristle every time he’s compared to Governor Andrew Cuomo, but maybe he should look north to see how a strong leader can accomplish tough fiscal cuts and push through controversial pieces of legislation.


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