Bloomberg: Four Day A Week Mayor

Learn Something // News

The Times ran a story yesterday about Bloomberg’s lavish twice monthly visits to Bermuda. Although Bloomberg is a giant philanthropist, there does to be something impolitic about going to one’s $10 million waterfront estate “about twice a month” when 22 percent of New Yorkers are classified as poor and 10 percent are unemployed. Even more important than whether the Mayor can empathize with so many poor and unemployed in the city while jumping on his private jet to abscond for the weekend, is how it affects his duties directly:

New York City mayors have historically prided themselves on working seven days a week and racing to the scene of an emergency even on the weekends.

Mr. Bloomberg does not. His aides know better than to schedule public events after Friday mornings, allowing the mayor to make his getaways to Bermuda on Friday afternoon and be back in New York by Sunday evening. (Of the 17 Fridays since Dec. 31, the mayor had no public events scheduled after 10 a.m. on 13 of them.)

So, basically our mayor is a four day a week mayor. No matter how good a job you think he’s doing, that just does not seem quite right. Particularly in this Times cited example of when he was out of town:

In February, a City Hall aide was struck by a car early one Sunday morning and fell into a coma, ordinarily an emergency that would prompt a mayoral visit. The mayor spoke to the aide’s grieving family by telephone while aides rushed to the hospital. Mr. Bloomberg eventually met with the family late Sunday afternoon, after returning to New York.

As someone who was an acquaintance of that “City Hall aide” I found that a hard issue to swallow, but more importantly, the idea that our Mayor is often two hours away from an emergency does not seem like the type of leadership I would expect.