Bloomberg Takes Twin Hits: Angry Judges and Lost Bank Accounts
First, the Times reports that those 'hidden bank accounts' that had Mayor Mike calling in the bloodhounds on outgoing veteran D.A. Robert Morgenthau are widespread throughout city agencies. Times tag-team Willie Rashbaum and Ray Rivera got City Hall to fess up that there are at least 2,700 bank accounts containing some $122 million that have gone unregistered with the city comptroller.
How tangled have things become under the watch of that eagle-eyed private sector import, Mayor Mike? Try this: the city's Finance Department, which has been looking since the summer, "has been unable to determine which city agencies or entities control nearly 500 accounts that contain a total of about $70 million," reports the Times.
Strike two came in a rare blast yesterday from the city's top appellate judges against City Hall's legal counsel, Michael Cardozo, who made the mistake of trying to lecture them about how to run their courts. Corporation counsel Cardozo made clear in a speech this month that he was echoing the thoughts of his own boss, Mayor Blooomberg: "Nothing makes me, or I would add, the mayor, more frustrated with the judicial system when a case is not timely decided," said Cardozo. He went on to blame judicial coercion, indecision, and inefficiency.
To which 18 of the 20 justices in the First Department of Appellate Court, fired back yesterday in a letter published in the New York Law Journal, calling Cardozo "imperious," "facile," and "insulting."
For those unfamiliar with legal etiquette, this is not the way judges talk publicly, especially about a mayor's top gun - unless they are seriously ticked off. In other words, it doesn't get any better than this.