WTC plans might not include gov
Monday, January 27, 2003
By Maggie Haberman
Some of Gov. Pataki's top advisers are urging him
to remove himself from the World Trade Center rebuilding process
and give control to the city, sources told the Daily News.
Pataki surged to reelection on a wave of
post-Sept. 11 popularity.
But he's now beginning to come under criticism
from some circles for not offering a clear vision of what he
wants at the site.
Sources point out the years-long process only will
get more contentious, and that perhaps someone other than Pataki
- Mayor Bloomberg, for example - would be better suited to absorb
political body blows.
"Some people think he should hold onto it," said
one source. "Other people think he should let it go - it won't be
solved in the next few years - and let the city take it over."
At issue is what will happen after a final site
plan is chosen for Ground Zero by the end of next month.
"Our focus is getting the plans together [for the
WTC site] ... with the best consensus possible," said Pataki
spokesman Michael McKeon. "Obviously, we're working with the city
at all times. The rest of it is a lot of hothouse talk for now."
Even if Pataki removes himself from the process,
his influence will still be felt.
Pataki appointed half the board of the Lower
Manhattan Development Corp. Pataki also appointed Port Authority
executive director Joe Seymour, whose agency owns the site.
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