Even though Governor Pataki may have agreed to not to fill all seats at state agencies, there are many things for the Democrats to be upset about. For instance, the Empire State Development Corporation, headed by Pataki flunky Charles Gargano, selling 185,000 square feet at 633 Third Avenue - aka Governor Pataki's NYC offices - for $100 million without letting other state officials know. Democratic Assemblyman Richard Brodsky tells the Daily News that the $100 million sale is "at best, bizarre and, at worst, illegal," saying that the ESDC should have gotten the space appraised.
The space was sold to Times Equities, who the News says has contributed to both the Dems and GOP. ESDC spokesman Mark Weinberg, though, says that there were 6 bids, and since Manhattan office space is "hardly unique," there was no need to get an appraisal:
"The new law [requiring authorities to get appraisals on properties before selling them] applies to 'unique properties,'" he said.
But Brodsky said the law requires authorities to get appraisals for everything "so the public doesn't get cheated just because some politician wants to do a deal."
What's interesting is that after buying space at 633 Third, Time sold the state 165,000 square feet at 125 Maiden Lane for $62.5 million.
And for what it's worth, Governor-elect Spitzer wants his offices to be at Freedom Tower. Which might be possible if he gets a second term.