What do you know?
Some City Council members are pushing to do something positive for New York: get rid of the public advocate’s office.
As The Post reported, two Democratic councilmen — Kalman Yeger (B’klyn) and Robert Holden (Queens) — plan to roll out legislation to scrap the office.
That would not only save the $5 million spent every year to fund the post (including its 63 staffers) but also the tens of millions spent on elections, including matching public matching funds.
Since the post is little more than a springboard for wannabes to run for higher office, New Yorkers wouldn’t miss it one bit if it were gone.
As Holden notes, the money wasted on that office, now held by Jumaane Williams, could go to “more essential services,” like cops and firefighters.
“We have to tighten our belts as a city — especially with this migrant crisis — so that office should be the first to go,” says Holden.
It “does nothing anyway, and no one is ever around to pick up the phone when you call because Jumaane has so many [staffers] working remotely.”
We’ve long called for an end to the post, which was created after the council president position was ditched in 1993 and has virtually no powers other than to serve as first in line in case the mayor is incapacitated or the office is vacant.
Technically, the PA is the ombudsman for the public and provides oversight of city agencies.
Yet New Yorkers have numerous watchdogs and advocates to go to bat for them — local councilmen and community boards, the city and state comptrollers, state lawmakers, the courts . . .
Most public advocates have done little for constituents anyway, spending their time instead positioning for higher office: Mark Green ran unsuccessfully for mayor in 2001; Bill de Blasio managed to win in 2013.
Letitia James became state attorney general, and Williams, too, ran for governor last year, while retaining his public advocate position.
This isn’t the first time responsible pols have sought to do away with this outdated sinecure.
Yeger has pushed similar efforts before, and, indeed, the idea for the office itself was opposed from the start.
Of course, even if he and Holden succeed, they’d still need voters’ approval in a referendum.
Yet voters deserve a chance to reconsider if the position is needed — and the millions in funding is warranted.
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