2013-05-31 / Editorial/Opinion

Governor Slow-Mo

We look at Governor Christie visiting one beach town after another in New Jersey and we start to wonder about our governor. Where is Andrew?

Christie goes and sees with his own eyes – not only the destruction but the repair and rehabilitation. Again, where’s Andrew?

Christie is seen in ad campaigns which boasts New Jersey as Stronger than the Storm. Cuomo is running an ad campaign, too. It’s called New York State Open For Business. He’s using federal relief money and promoting areas untouched by the storm.

Christie promotes business and resiliency. Cuomo says maybe we should let Mother Nature have her way, tell those people to move on.

We’re not comparing records of the two governors beyond their connection to people affected by the storm. On that score, Christie far outshines our governor.

On the eve of Thanksgiving, Cuomo told residents of Breezy Point that in a year’s time the place would be back better and stronger than ever. Two months later he was saying about coastal communities: “At one point, you have to say maybe Mother Nature doesn’t want you here. Maybe she’s trying to tell you something.” He hasn’t been back to Breezy since.

We’re checking the news accounts. As far as we can tell, the last time he came to Rockaway was November 21st. Less than two weeks later he reinstated the tolls on the Rockaway bridges. Volunteers and displaced people had to pay full tolls. What was that about, Governor? What was the rush?

This week, Governor Christie got another visit from President Obama – it looked like a bipartisan effort to get things done. Maybe Cuomo and our Mayor should try it. Or has the governor just ceded power to Mayor Bloomberg? Is Cuomo just a coat holder for the mayor?

Some relief money is being split: half for the city, half for the rest of the State. Does that mean Cuomo is free of responsibility to city dwellers affected by Sandy? Of course not.

Maybe he’ll come when the A Train resumes service. Will he get off the train long enough for a good look at Rockaway? We doubt it.

Cuomo’s grandfather used to own a building on Beach 116th Street (coincidentally it’s vacant now). Curiously, he’s skipped over the mid-peninsula, instead making stops in Breezy and Far Rockaway after the Storm. Did Andrew get roughed up on the beach when he was a kid? What gives with his total disregard – or is it contempt -- for Rockaway?

Most curiously, he announced this week – seven months after Sandy -- appointments to positions focusing on New York's storm recovery efforts. Seven months? Well, here’s something equally troubling. This team is also supposed to address issues stemming from Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee.

That’s a governor in slow motion. If he’s hiring people now to help with Tropical Storm Lee we should be grateful it’s only seven months since Sandy.

Politicians don’t have to be seen to be effective; but sometimes they should be seen.

Where’s Andrew?

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