Yesterday, Public Advocate Betsy Gotbaum claimed the 40% reduction in her office's budget—from $2.8 million to $1.7 million— was "political payback" from City Council Speaker Christine Quinn. Why? Because Gotbaum opposed extending term limits, which Quinn supported. PolitickerNY reports that Gotbaum, who is not running for re-election, "said she will not lay off any of her 40 employees, but may leave some positions vacant in order to save money for whomever succeeds her." She added, "I find it appalling that the speaker could not find the money to restore my budget but did have $17 million to hand out. The speaker can get the money from wherever she is parking those funds." Gotbaum's complaints led the Post create a Gotbaum-baby Photoshop (pictured, but larger version here); the Post also reports that Quinn retorted, "Why did the mayor cut the public advocate's office? Betsy, the public advocate, should take her question there...I can't speak to her anger level, today or in comparison to any other days." The mayor's office suggested Gotbaum...speak to the City Council.
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