Following Astorino decision to hide Airport privatization until after November election, Democratic nominee George Latimer renews calls for county to kill controversial deal
Latimer calls monetization plan latest ploy by Astorino to sell off county assets in effort to maintain fake tax pledge to Westchester voters
WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. – Following news this week that a controversial plan to privatize Westchester County Airport long floated by County Executive Rob Astorino will be delayed until the November 7th general election, Democrat George Latimer is renewing calls for the county to cancel the proposal. Latimer is also offering strong condemnation of his opponent for spearheading the push to monetize the airport, citing it as the latest in a string of ploys by Astorino to sell off county assets as a means of maintaining a self-imposed tax pledge.
“This is stunningly dishonest, even for Rob Astorino. Westchester County would make $100 million more by not entering into this immediate monitziation of the airport. Astorino usually brags about selling our assets to plug one shot holes” said George Latimer. “But he’s a scared politicians who’s been caught with his hand in the cookie jar, so he’s trying to hide the facts until after he can’t be held accountable. It’s just his latest ploy to lie to Westchester taxpayers as he sells off public property.”
Latimer’s strong words come after it was reported this week that Astorino is looking to postpone deciding on the future of the airport until after the November 7th election. Astorino had unilaterally proposed awarding a $140 million no-bid contract to the California-based firm Oaktree Capital to run the airport for a term of 40 years. When county lawmakers balked at the proposal, an outside consultant was brought in to manage a future request-for-proposal, which legislators had anticipated taking place as early as this month.
Astorino’s efforts to monetize the county’s sole airport is merely the latest in a long list of county assets the Republican has tried to sell to make the County’s finances look stronger than they are, while taxpayers suffer under the highest taxes in the nation. In 2016, Astorino sold County Owned Property to donors to his own political campaign. Astorino’s 2015 privatization of Playland amusement park has similarly been characterized as another ploy to shore up county finances.
Most recently, Latimer held a press conference in Eastchester to draw attention to rising sewer and utility fees faced by local residents, exposing Astorino’s long held false claim that taxes have not gone up since taking office. For Latimer, this is a dishonest tactic that voters should continue to expect from Astorino.
“To borrow a phrase, only two things in this life are certain: death and Rob Astorino lying about our taxes,” concluded Latimer.