2014-02-14 / Editorial/Opinion

Hurry It Up, Bill

Calling Tony Shorris, calling Tony Shorris.

Who’s that, you ask? Come on, you know who that is.

Anthony “Tony” Shorris is the First Deputy Mayor. Shorris is the second highest ranking official at City Hall. He’s in charge of managing the day-to-day operation of City government. He’s the guy who is put in charge to get things done, to get things moving. We hope that includes moving the mayor, who clearly isn’t in a rush.

De Blasio still hasn’t named a number of commissioners (Hello, Parks!). It’s not like de Blasio should have been surprised by his win. He was beating Joe Lhota by 40 points since September. He could have had some leaders ready to take over important city agencies on Day One (Hello, Parks! There’s this boardwalk thing…)

We were glad that he recognized Rockaway in his State of the City speech this week but it only left us wondering. Here’s the hometown money quote:

“Finally, we will not forget our obligations to the people of this city still recovering from the aftereffects of superstorm Sandy. We are resolved to make the efforts underway function more effectively and efficiently.

“In the aftermath of the storm, I personally made it my mission to see the devastation in those neighborhoods myself. The people I met in Staten Island, and the Rockaways, and Coney Island, and lower Manhattan suffered unimaginable dislocation of their lives.

“I made a promise that if elected Mayor, I would make this recovery a focus of my administration.

“In the coming weeks, we'll make good on the pledge with a comprehensive review and updated plan to help those for whom the effects of Sandy are still an everyday reality.”

Now we’re wondering about this “updated plan.” When? And what will it consist of? So far, his administration has hit the ground strolling. There’s zero evidence de Blasio or his staff appreciate the sense of urgency needed here.

We’re not sure how they’re devising this “updated plan.” We haven’t seen anybody from the new administration. The Community Board and our elected officials haven’t gotten any clear signals about the City’s plans.

Can this administration move? Yeah, yeah, they extended the ferry. But a real deadline was in place. The ferry contract was expiring on January 31st. The City had to act. Without deadlines, there is no indication this administration appreciates the urgency of so many issues in Rockaway.

The boardwalk. Build It Back. The Game Changer Competition. These are crucial issues with, unfortunately, moveable deadlines.

If recovery is a focus, it’s time the mayor and his first deputy set some real deadlines.

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