Earlier in the week the Feds said they weren’t giving New York stimulus money for cops because our crime rate was already low. This sort of echoed fired Inspector General Gerald Walpin’s argument that the New York City Teaching Fellows program shouldn’t get any more money because it was already doing great — and we saw how much trouble Obama got into for firing him, so maybe he was trying to look like he took the hint.
But now, surprise! In a quick reversal, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano will announce today that we’re getting $35 million in cop money after all.
There was much pissing and moaning from New York pols after the original stiffing. At a tribute to the late Officer Timoshenko, who was killed in action last year, Governor Paterson and Ray Kelly both denounced it, citing 9/11 and New York’s reduced police numbers due to budget cuts. Christine Quinn said, “This stimulus money was a lifeline for our communities, because it would have brought officers into their neighborhoods.” The usual suspects cried, “OBAMA THROWS NEW YORK CITY AND ITS POLICE DEPARTMENT UNDER BUS,” etc.
The $35 million turnabout has Chuck Schumer delighted. “This will put more than 120 new cops on our trains and buses and will be a shot in the arm for New York’s successful fight against crime,” he says. Mayor Bloomberg and the rest have yet to respond.
Other big cities, like New Haven and San Francisco, were already getting the federal largesse. Maybe Obama was waiting for news of the counterintuitive holdout on New York to sink in before authorizing it, hoping the complaints of our local officials would remind the rest of the country of our dire need. Or maybe there’s some other political game going on here which is too deep for us to figure out.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on July 29, 2009