Convention center potential conflict for pols
Mar 06, 2012 | 1852 views | 0 0 comments | 10 10 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Dear Editor:

Many public officials who have endorsed the proposed $4 billion mega-convention center to be built at Aqueduct in South Ozone Park Queens by Genting America may have a clear conflict of interest.

Weprin has gone further than most public officials by having his favorable opinion piece ("If you build it, they will come" - February 15) supporting this project published in many daily and weekly newspapers.

NYC has previously committed investing $2.4 billion in transportation improvements by extending the 7 subway from Times Square to the Javits Convention Center in Manhattan to make it more accessible. The city is also investing $463 million on current renovations.

Hotel owners are charging customers a $1.50 per room tax to help support this investment. The tax will not expire for another 34 years.

Does Weprin agree with those who just want to walk away from these investments and just tear down the Javits Convention Center? Does Weprin support using taxpayers dollars to help pay for a third proposed convention center as part of the Willets Point redevelopment project?

Will Weprin accept campaign contributions from the project sponsor, lobbyists or construction unions who might benefit from the project, thus creating a clear conflict of interest?

It may represent a potential windfall in campaign contributions for politicians who will benefit from the political quid pro quo.

Sincerely,

Larry Penner

Great Neck

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