Mayor Bill de Blasio, a champion of progressive values with an agenda that embraces environmentally friendly initiatives, has been leading a double life: one in which he wastes fuel and pollutes the air with reckless abandon.
The Brooklyn Paper reports that de Blasio travels 11 miles to work out at his favorite gym, the Park Slope YMCA, in a two-car motorcade that leaves an SUV running idle outside while he exercises. It’s only slightly less absurd than former Mayor Bloomberg’s detail, which stuffed an air conditioning unit into its cars.
Curbside idling is illegal in New York City and punishable by a fine of $350 or more, according to the Department of Environmental Protection. The DEP warns that engine idling exacerbates asthma symptoms in a city that already has one of the highest rates of asthma in the country; wastes $28 million in gas per year; and “causes as much pollution as nine million large trucks driving from the Bronx to Staten Island.” Recently, two New York City councilmembers introduced a bill that would reward residents for reporting those wasteful idlers.
People are going to have to start snitching on de Blasio, because when prodded by the paper, de Blasio’s spokesperson Wiley Norvell didn’t address the legality of the idling. He only justified the excursions by saying, “He is staying close to the community where he raised his family and where he has lived for 20 years.”
(Photo: Kevin Case)