Bloomberg Wants Cities, Not States, to Get Federal Money

Minutes after Barack Obama spoke in Virginia urging congressional lawmakers to pass an economic stimulus package, Mayor Michael Bloomberg appeared on both CNN and later Fox Business News with some additional advice: send the money directly to cities.

“Well, one thing is we have to invest in infrastructure,” he said on CNN.

“Now that trouble with infrastructure is it takes a long time to have that filter through the economy and give us the financial umph that we need.”

“But,” the mayor added, “there are projects at the city level, basically not at the state level but at the city level, and we’ve made the case to his staff, that a lot of this money should go to the cities. If it goes to the state it gets spread very thinly and the states don’t really do things; it’s the cities that do things. Eighty-five percent of people in this country live in cities and we’ve got to get some money down there.”

On Fox News, Bloomberg said infrastructure development “takes an awfully long time to do” and that Obama “has got to find some ways to get people who are getting laid off today jobs.”

David Paterson, like other governors, has sought federal money to help deal with massive budget deficits.