Early this year we watched a rather ridiculous story unfolding in New York City, where soon-to-be ex-Mayor Bill de Blasio declared war on Donald Trump and his entire business empire. Having determined that the January 6 riot was all some sort of insidious plan by the former President to destroy democracy or something, Hizzoner vowed to “run Trump out of the city” by canceling his business contracts and closing his operations. He targeted the Central Park Carousel, two skating rinks in the park, and a golf course in the Bronx. The city later backtracked on the closure of the skating rinks after a public outcry, but the Mayor vowed to continue his battle. Now, nearly a year after all of this nonsense began, the chickens are coming home to roost. The plan was not well thought out and it’s looking increasingly likely that the Big Apple will have to cough up tens of millions of dollars (covered by the taxpayers, of course) and give the money to the target of de Blasio’s wrath. (NY Post)
New York City’s attempts to divorce itself from Donald Trump have turned into a comedy of errors — one that could end up sticking taxpayers with a not-so-funny $30 million bill.
After the Jan. 6 Capitol riots, Mayor de Blasio vowed to rid the city of Trump. Aiming to become a hero to progressives, on Jan. 13 the mayor said he would yank the Trump Organization’s longtime concession contracts to operate the historic Central Park carousel, Wollman and Lasker skating rinks in the park, and the Trump Ferry Point Golf Course in The Bronx.
“This president has committed an unlawful act, he has disgraced himself, he will no longer profit from his relationship with New York City,” de Blasio told reporters. The city then moved to strip the Central Park contracts from Trump even though they would have expired that spring anyway.
The contract for the skating rinks was allowed to run its course and then de Blasio brought in a new outfit to run it, Harris Blitzer Sports & Entertainment. They immediately raised the rates for a family of four to visit by fifteen dollars. (Right in the middle of the Biden inflation boom.) The Carousel wound up being closed all summer because the city couldn’t find anyone to run it.
Trying to boot Trump out of the Bronx golf course turned out even worse. When Trump’s attorneys originally drafted the contract for his organization to refurbish and maintain the course, they worked all sorts of protective clauses into the agreement. Trump’s contract to operate the Ferry Point Golf Course still has 13 years to go. Current calculations of the penalties for early termination without cause indicate that the city will need to pay the Trump organization more than $30 million.
The next anticipated mayor of the city, Eric Adams was asked about this expensive debacle and he seemed to be caught totally off guard.
“I’m just learning of this and have to look at that and find out exactly what this is about,” Eric Adams, the mayoral-race frontrunner, told The Post regarding the city possibly being on the hook for tens of millions.
None of this stopped de Blasio from moving ahead and awarding Trump’s 13-year contract to a new outfit based in Georgia. Almost immediately, it was revealed that the person in charge of it was in legal trouble for self-dealing and sucking money out of an operation that supposedly worked with homeless shelters. They were removed and replaced by yet another company, but by then the cost to the city had risen significantly.
This started out as a hunting safari where Bill de Blasio was going to claim Donald Trump’s scalp as a trophy and become a hero to the progressive left. The entire project has now imploded and somewhere out there in America, Donald Trump is no doubt laughing his butt off. And Bill de Blasio is about to slink out of office in ten weeks or so and leave the taxpayers of New York City holding the bag. This was just such a classic de Blasio scheme from the beginning and these results were totally predictable.