Bloomberg on Bad Spending and Good Spending

A couple of other elements from Bloomberg’s budget presentation…

In explaining why he wants the Education Department to cut $75 million from its $15 billion budget, Bloomberg said, “I just want that agency to realize that money doesn’t grow on trees.”

“They are, like every other part of this city, responsible to the taxpayers for spending their money intelligently,” he said.

Bloomberg said that the overall education budget is growing, with $2 billion coming from the city and the same amount of money coming in from the state.

But while he was talking about wringing efficiencies out of one existing bureaucracy, he described his plans to take on debt in order to fund large capital projects.

(He is proposing the creation of two new financing authorities to help fund PLaNYC projects.)

Asked by a reporter how his big spending plans might affect the city’s bond-rating, which is at its highest ever, the mayor said:

“We certainly will have to deal with the rating agencies. I think the rating agencies will want to hear what is the benefit of the investments in PLaNYC. If it makes this a city that is more attractive to people, then it will understand that. And, they don’t have an objection to us borrowing money, they want to know that there is going to be a return and we will be able to repay the debt.”