Tuesday, October 18, 2005

NYC Comptroller Comes Out Against Wal-Mart

The Staten Island Advance is reporting that City Comptroller Bill Thompson, while still unsure about the proposed NASCAR track in Bloomfield, is opposed to Wal-Mart entering the city, including the two sites proposed for Staten Island. His major concerns are the company’s child labor abuses and poor health care benefits.

The article then goes to mention that the Comptroller will soon be auditing the Economic Development Corp. (EDC), the lead agency on the redevelopment of the Bronx Terminal Market. We suggest that Thompson pay special attention to the sweetheart deal that has led to the attempted eviction of the merchants and the shoehorning in of the politically-connected Related Companies. Specifically, he should be examining whether the City and EDC, by deciding to involve only one developer and then offer a lease agreement with outrageously low rents, is shortchanging New York City’s taxpayers. Also, considering that the Terminal Market is a prime candidate for a Wal-Mart/Sam’s Club the Comptroller should be especially interested in ensuring that the city's money is being used wisely.