With respect to former Mayor Ed Koch, the proposal to rename the Queensboro Bridge is stupid. Known also as the “59th Street Bridge,” it connects Queens with Manhattan. Changing the name to the “Ed Koch Queensboro Bridge” is unacceptable. At best it is dumb; at worst it is an insult to Queensites.
Mayor Michael Bloomberg let it be known that he wanted to change the name of the bridge at an early 86th birthday party for Koch in December. That he came up with the suggestion is evidence of the mayor’s disconnect with the people living in the outer boroughs.
We agree with City Councilman Peter Vallone Jr., who said in a statement: “Mayor Ed Koch is truly a great man and deserving of an honor like this, but renaming a landmark so closely linked to our borough’s culture and history is not appropriate.”
The mayor would not think of renaming the Brooklyn Bridge. The people of Brooklyn would never let that happen.
Vallone suggested the city consider renaming Gracie Mansion, the residence of the mayor, the “Gracie-Koch Mansion.” This is dumb, but harmless.
The bridge became famous around the world when Simon and Garfunkel recorded “The 59th Street Bridge Song (Feelin’ Groovy)” and it served as a background in several movies.
We are disappointed that Koch, a man who became a symbol of the resilience and spirit of this city, did not tell Bloomberg thanks but no thanks. He does not need this honor to be remembered.
What a Waste
The state Senate spent $376,464 to get rid of ex-Sen. Hiram Monserrate. The Senate spent the money on outside legal help in expelling the man convicted of beating his girlfriend.
It would be hard to argue with Sen. Martin Golden, who called this “another outlandish expenditure that the taxpayer has to pay for.” This money should have been spent on aid for the borough’s public schools.
A Senate spokesman says an outside firm was hired to avoid a conflict of interest since the Senate lawyers would have been reporting to committees on which Monserrate sat.
Nonsense. Monserrate could have been barred from any discussion of his case with the lawyers.
The attorneys hired by the Senate worked pro bono, so where did more than a quarter million dollars go?