Sometimes you look at a headline like this and think: “that can’t possibly be true.”
Or you HOPE it’s not true.
Sadly? This is real.
Laura Ingraham has even called it a “scheme”.
Folks, let me tell you something, if there truly is a “scheme” here and the money was intentionally “misused” or funnelled somewhere, that is criminal.
If I lived in New York, I’d be pissed!
I think it’s safe to say that Bill DeBlasio’s presidential prospects are dead in the water before they even started.
Here it is friends, take a look:
The Blaze has more details:
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio's wife, Chirlane McCray, was given $900 million to start a mental health initiative focusing on helping the homeless in the city. Four years later, no one seems to know what that money was actually used for, according to the New York Post.
The City Council discovered this shocking amount of potential waste during a meeting Wednesday. And while it sounds good to spend heavily on a mental health initiative, it appears that nobody has noticed any real benefits from that investment.
"I like the fact that money is going toward mental health, but when they say we're seeing a benefit in all areas, I take exception to that, because I don't see it everywhere," Queens Councilman Robert Holden told The Post. "I'm not sure anybody does."
The Thrive program, which had its budget raised to $250 million per year in 2019, has produced some underwhelming numbers in terms of how many people it impacts.
Seven mayors attended a 2017 national mental health conference in New York City. Only 570 of the estimated 12-15,000 mothers who experience postpartum depression have been reached by the program, Politico reported, a number NYC disputes.
Of the 78,000 newborn deliveries in the city annually, only 28,560 new mothers have been screened by the Thrive program.
Bob McManus harshly assessed the program's effectivenessfor the New York Post:So, ipso presto, co-Mayor Bill coughed up enough cash to break a pack mule's back and sent it off to co-Mayor Chirlane — who then went forth to cure Gotham's mental-illness problems.
Fast-forward to Wednesday, when the City Council was startled to discover that McCray and Team Thrive are closing in on having spent an eye-popping $900 million since the program's inception — and nobody seems to have a clue on what.
That is, nobody appears to have kept receipts; the subways and street corners are still overrun with crazy people, and nobody in charge knows what's to happen next.
The NY Post reports that among multiple failed programs and "bad accounting", the figure is actually not $850 million but rather $1.8 BILLION!
Who’s got a billion to burn?
Well, Bill de Blasio for sure.
But also mayoral spouse Chirlane McCray, who has just been revealed as a world-class boondoggler in her own right.
Hey, the family that preys together stays together, right? And it’s only (your) money — even if it is quite a lot of it.
McCray is the proprietress of ThriveNYC, a mental-health-related something-or-other created four-plus years ago to give a little heft to the conceit that Bill and Chirlane were elected as co-mayors — which is nonsense on stilts.
That is, once upon a time, first spouses were content to pretend to be in charge of prettifying highways and things. It was honorable “work,” it didn’t cost very much and it filled up the spouse’s free time.
But this is 2019, and the general feeling — at least in the de Blasio administration — is that if there’s not a lot of dough attached to the spousal sinecure, it doesn’t really matter enough.
So, ipso presto, co-Mayor Bill coughed up enough cash to break a pack mule’s back and sent it off to co-Mayor Chirlane — who then went forth to cure Gotham’s mental-illness problems.
Fast-forward to Wednesday, when the City Council was startled to discover that McCray and Team Thrive are closing in on having spent an eye-popping $900 million since the program’s inception — and nobody seems to have a clue on what.
That is, nobody appears to have kept receipts; the subways and street corners are still overrun with crazy people, and nobody in charge knows what’s to happen next.
But let’s be clear: If your boondogglery sets the New York City Council back on its heels, you truly are soaring with the eagles.
Right up there with co-Mayor Bill, who started the week on his own sour note — announcing that his signature Renewal school program was closing up shop after pounding $773 million down a rathole.
Well, he didn’t actually say “rathole,” and the price tag has doubtless been lowballed — but he also had no credible explanation for the debacle, nor did he apologize for it.
“We did not say everything would be perfect,” burbled the co-mayor — as if anybody outside his immediate orbit expected an outcome even close to competent.
That’s because there never was any doubt what the program was about. That is, reversing Bloomberg administration plans to shut down 100 miserably malfunctioning schools, thus saving the jobs of barely competent teachers and administrators and shutting up small bands of noisy parents who loved the schools despite their failings. Think Stockholm syndrome, rolled into a big ball with the United Federation of Teachers.
But the co-mayor made performance promises when he initiated the Renewal program, few of which even remotely were met, and presently gravity prevailed: The program caved in on itself.
How many other big-bucks initiatives are in similar straits is unknowable — mostly because bureaucrats never blow the whistle on themselves and also because Gotham’s formal watchdog, city Comptroller Scott Stringer, is among the most incurious individuals ever to hold the office.
That the co-mayors could fly under the radar to burn through $1.6 billion to no obvious good effect is an embarrassment — but understandable in the abstract. Things happen.
That Stringer could sleep through it all is the real scandal; why does the city even have a comptroller, if that’s the standard of performance?
It is not, in the end, just about money. The programs at issue ostensibly are meant to assist particularly challenged people — the helpless, often homeless, mentally ill and small children whose futures are forfeited because they landed in shamefully nonfunctional schools, an experience from which they will never recover.
But there are other mysteries out there, too. Does anybody know how well — more likely, how poorly — the co-mayors’ hugely expensive pre-K program is working, especially that portion consigned to the city’s notoriously problematic not-for-profit sector?
How about the Hurricane Sandy recovery effort — six years, uncountable delays and billions of dollars later?
Has anybody even looked?
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