Rudolph Giuliani

New York City's Republican Mayor Rudolph Giuliani used the platform of a March 30 luncheon to appeal to federal and state governments and the courts to roll back unfunded mandates, leaving fund allocations to local discretion. Giuliani ticked off a string of his city's funding horror stories including one he suspected ought not be raised in a press club: New York is required by mandate to spend $175,000 a year for newspapers for the inmates of city jails. Another $400,000 is mandated to wash jail windows four times a year. As Mayor, Giuliani interjected, he has yet to see anyone dusting the panes at City Hall. Courts, said the Mayor, determined that jail meals were insufficiently warm: so there is now an order on the books to spend $300 million to rectify that. The same money, the Mayor protested, could build 15 schools, remodel playgrounds or expand the police force. Rounding out his list, Giuliani spoke of a new mandated water filtration plant in a city "whose water is already good enough to bottle, and better than the water of other cities here, in Europe or Asia." Giuliani said the federal government should stick to what it alone can do, sealing borders against illegal immigrants, deporting criminal aliens and negotiating international drug control agreements. Far from accomplishing that, he said, New York City now harbors an estimated 400,00 illegal aliens while only 772 were deported from the New York area in the past year. Feisty and smiling, Giuliani was asked whether he would accept the No. 2 spot on a 1996 Republican Ticket. The New York Mayor laughed in reply that there might be some doubts about the political savvy of one who backed Democrat Mario Cuomo in his unsuccessful bid for re-election as Governor of New York. Then, more seriously, he added that his desire for now is to concentrate on helping American urban areas. The National Press Club Record Volume XLV, No. 13. April 6, 1995.

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