Lew’s View: Don’t Close Rikers Island

The latest issue I have with New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio is his ill-advised support of a plan to close the prison on Rikers Island.
Under the leadership of former Corrections Commissioner Bernie Kerik, Rikers had nearly twice the number of inmates as it does now and it ran relatively smoothly. Under de Blasio, the system is run by an outsider whose last job was in Maine and who lacks the management experience to run a big city jail system.

I also find it extremely ironic and moronic that the mayor who did away with the successful practice of closing failing schools and opening smaller schools in their place would agree to a plan to close a failing prison and open smaller jails all across the city. His bone-headed plan goes hand-in-hand with his decision to offer every criminal a job upon their release from prison. Something I’m sure every City College graduate would love to have.

The real solution for the problems at Rikers Island would be to hire an experienced manager to whip the place into shape. Unfortunately, lack of management experience has plagued the de Blasio administration from day one. New York City really cannot afford another four years of mismanagement.

–LEW LEONE (Lew Leone is the vice president and general manager of WNYW-FOX 5)

MIDTOWN TRIBUNE NEWS DIGEST MANHATTAN NEW YORK USA

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