Reporting Stan Brooks
NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – A councilman from Queens is planning to introduce legislation that would require mayors to file written reports when they’re traveling 250 miles outside city limits or out of the country for longer than 24 hours.
Peter Vallone said he is not out to give Mayor Michael Bloomberg a hard time but the councilman insists it’s important to know when this mayor or any future mayor is far away from the city.
“We saw on 9/11 when Rudy Giuliani was on the streets in a moment and if this mayor is overseas and cannot get back and planes are grounded and phones are out we do need to know who is in charge in the street the moment we’re attacked,” Vallone said.
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The push for the bill comes months after Bloomberg was on a trip to Bermuda during a massive blizzard that crippled the city. Lawmakers said they found it difficult to determine who was overseeing preparations for the severe storm.
“It’s about knowing who is in charge, it’s about him notifying us when he goes a certain distance away,” Vallone said.
Bloomberg stresses with today’s technology he’s always in touch.
“I can only tell you no matter where I am there’s never a day that goes by where I don’t have a number of conversations with different city officials depending on what’s going on that day,” he said.
The mayor said public officials are entitled to a private life “as long as they can make themselves available to do the job they were elected for.”
Under the bill, the mayor would have to note the dates of the trip but would not be required to disclose their destinations.
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