Today's decision by the Court of Appeals affirming Governor David Paterson's appointment of Richard Ravitch as Lieutenant Governor is great news for New York State and for all New Yorkers.
Dick Ravitch has shown time and again that he is a dedicated and distinguished public servant, one who has tackled some of the biggest public policy challenges facing our city and state over the past four decades.
When the city and state came close to financial meltdown in the 1970's, Mr. Ravitch was one of the people who helped restore fiscal health. In the early 1980s, when the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) was falling apart and on the brink of collapse, he helped turn around the public transit system that was and is essential to the long-term economic success of the city and the entire metropolitan region. And, as the MTA faced new funding challenges last year, Governor Paterson called on Mr. Ravitch to put together a comprehensive long-term financial strategy for the agency that would ensure that the cost of the transportation system would be shared by all who benefit from it.
Mr. Ravitch has the willingness and fortitude to tackle tough governmental and public policy challenges and bring about effective solutions that benefit all New Yorkers. He is a fixer who has proven that he can get even the most difficult jobs done. He was, and is, willing to do whatever it takes to build consensus and get real results in a pragmatic manner, always with New Yorkers' best interests at heart.
I applaud Governor Paterson for choosing this outstanding individual to serve in this important position. Now more than ever, as we wrestle with the effects of a worldwide economic downturn on our state, we are fortunate to have Lieutenant Governor Richard Ravitch on our team.