Bloomberg and 9/11 Benefits: Heartless?
August 21st, 2006

It’s easy to paint Mayor Bloomberg as an “ogre” for opposing the law signed by Governor Pataki last week enhancing benefits for sick 9/11 first responders, writes Sheryl McCarthy in Newsday, but he has a point when he argues that the state has dumped the responsibility on the city.

It is hard to argue that those who worked at Ground Zero deserve more generous benefits but it is very easy for Governor Pataki to spread money around when it is the city’s money, and not the state’s. This law, argues McCarthy, could end up costing the city far more than its share.

“New Yorkers get misty-eyed when we talk about the sacrifices of the Ground Zero workers. But we could get really annoyed when we have to deal with the reality of the costs,” she writes. ” … [I]f we’re going to engage in this kind of generosity, the state and the feds need to share the cost.”

By on August 21, 2006, 7:14 am
In category: Health | 3 Comments »

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3 Responses to “Bloomberg and 9/11 Benefits: Heartless?”

  1. wronginfo Says:
    August 21st, 2006 at 10:47 am

    Actually wonkster you are wrong–the death benefit is split 50/50 between the city and the state–

  2. Joshua Brustein Says:
    August 21st, 2006 at 10:55 am

    Wronginfo —

    According to McCarthy:

    “Bloomberg estimates that, combined with the medical presumption bill, the new laws will cost about $650 million over the next 10 years. The state is paying only half the cost of the death benefits, or about 1 percent of the total amount, according to the mayor’s office. The rest will come from the city’s pension funds”

  3. H. Tuttle Says:
    August 21st, 2006 at 12:07 pm

    “It is hard to argue that those who worked at Ground Zero deserve more generous benefits .”

    Really? I hope that sentence doesn’t capture what you meant to say. I’d rewrite it as “It’s hard to argue that those who worked at Ground Zero AND WERE INJURED IN DOING SO, WHICH INJURY CAN BE CAUSALLY PROVEN TO THEIR WORK AT GROUND ZERO should get more generous benefits.” Whether they “deserve” them is another story, in the sense of what does any one, who is simply doing their job, deserve when they’re injured in the course of that employment.

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