April Fool’s Day is generally the first day of April, however it obtained right here as soon as extra this 12 months when Mayor Bill de Blasio welcomed the month of October by making a model new place he grandly calls “chief democracy officer,” together with to New York Metropolis’s already bloated ranks of municipal workers.
Solely in de Blasio’s New York would a mayor create a model new place — one with an infinite wage, no a lot much less — that solely serves to confuse voters.
The model new job’s title is also laughable, nevertheless the lofty annual pay, $165,000, makes this patronage job merely one different harmful joke on metropolis taxpayers. Together with insult to break, it turned out that the woman chosen for the put up and requested to boost voter participation had, herself, didn’t vote in fairly just a few elections — along with ultimate 12 months’s Democratic main between de Blasio and Sal Albanese.
That’s a fairly spectacular accomplishment, considering her polling place sits barely a block away from her Greater West Facet residence.
Possibly the most important joke, though, was when 400,000 New Yorkers purchased an alarming letter from city’s new DemocracyNYC program this week. The observe educated them that that they’d been far from the voter-registration rolls for being inactive.
“You’ve got been marked as an inactive voter by the New York Metropolis Board of Elections,” the letter said, “nevertheless it’s best to nonetheless be eligible to vote inside the upcoming election.”
Alas, in a lot of circumstances, the data was merely improper; those who purchased the letters have been, definitely, registered and able to vote. However the letter sparked 1,600 frantic cellphone calls to the BOE. Energetic voters have been concerned it was a rip-off and even an attempt to suppress voter turnout.
The pointless chaos unleashed by the model new “chief confusion officer” in her first week is just one trigger de Blasio must get rid of the place. Proper right here’s one different: New York Metropolis’s Board of Elections already has 10 commissioners and correctly over 1,000 full-time workers — who, based mostly on the BOE website, are required by state laws “to enfranchise all eligible New Yorkers to register to vote and to comply with these rights” and to oversee “voter outreach and education.”
That the model new “democracy” chief’s job is already being completed by one different firm has left many New Yorkers scratching their heads and rightfully asking why the duplicative initiative is required.And it’s par for the course for a municipal hiring spree beneath de Blasio that has included a $130,000-a-year director of nightlife and that has launched the number of specific assistants at Metropolis Hall to roughly 300, with some incomes better than $200,000 yearly. (Good work in the event you’re politically linked ample to get it.)
Based mostly on projections in a report by the Residents Funds Price, of the 34,171 new de Blasio positions created between the highest of Fiscal Yr 2014 and the highest of Fiscal Yr 2019, solely 4,069 (or eight p.c) are accounted for by uniformed police, hearth, sanitation or corrections personnel.
Let me put that in perspective: City’s 331,520 municipal workers make up an even bigger workforce than these inside the governments of any of 46 states. Solely California, Texas, Florida and New York state have further state workers than city.
And the charge is steep: The CBC estimates that full-time positions added as of July 2018 account for a whopping $2.5 billion in personnel payments inside the current fiscal 12 months. Moreover they elevate long-term liabilities by one different $521 million.
In an monetary downturn — and even de Blasio himself admits one is inevitable, finally — that may depart city laborious pressed to make its annual payroll, or pay completely different funds. Within the meantime, city funds itself has ballooned by better than 25 p.c, from $70 billion to $89 billion, since de Blasio took office. As soon as extra, that doesn’t portend correctly for the day when revenues begin to dry up.
Within the meantime, what are New Yorkers getting for all that money and types? Property tax funds which have soared 44 p.c, streets nonetheless riddled with potholes and litter, college rooms which might be overcrowded, public housing that’s deplorable and a rising inhabitants of homeless and mentally sick left to fend for themselves.
Probably all that gross mismanagement of taxpayer money and poor stewardship of city has New Yorkers fed up and apathetic. And probably that’s why so few of them come out to vote.In any event, that’s completely not a problem one different de Blasio bureaucrat with a flowery title and fat pay is susceptible to treatment.
Nicole Malliotakis represents components of Brooklyn and Staten Island inside the New York state Assembly and was the Republican nominee for mayor in 2017.