Credit check! Rival pols both claim responsibility for getting building demolished

The city will demolish the 79th Street raccoon house — but both state Sen. Marty Golden and Councilman Vincent Gentile are taking credit for getting the Bay Ridge eyesore torn down.

Moments after the city’s Housing, Preservation, and Development announced its plans to condemn the derelict house between Third Avenue and Ridge Boulevard, Golden (R–Bay Ridge) put out a press release claiming responsibility for the decision.

“My staff and I have worked with the city over the years to see that this property is regularly inspected and conditions are checked by the Health and Buildings Departments,” Golden said in his statement.

Yet Gentile (D–Bay Ridge) claimed Golden had nothing to do with getting the rotting home torn down.

“The statement came from an elected official who was not involved,” said the pol, who claimed to have held a midnight stakeout for Frank Landy, the neglectful homeowner, at a postal facility and made the crucial phone call that got the city’s Housing, Preservation, and Development to condemn the structure — without Golden’s assistance.

“We worked with the U.S. Post Office, the Department of Buildings, and Housing Preservation and Development, that’s all,” Gentile said.

Gentile suggested that Golden swooped in to steal the credit after getting a tip-off from one of his allies on Community Board 10, who are automatically notified of all official demolitions in the district.

“Whether through the website or through someone on the community board, the Senator found out about it and put out a statement,” Gentile said.

But a Golden spokesman said his office has the records to back up their bragging rights.

“The Senator and his staff have emails and significant correspondence related to this property, and, as such, we had every right to announce the planned city action related to this dilapidated property,” Golden spokesman John Quaglione said.

The two legislators have bickered repeatedly over the years since Golden defeated the incumbent Gentile in the 2002 State Senate race, and Gentile won the resulting special election for Golden’s vacant City Council seat —most recently over who brought two-hour parking to Bay Ridge.

Golden was also criticized for taking credit for the MTA’s decision to restore the B64 bus line between Bay Ridge and Bensonhurst, even though civic leaders said he didn’t show up at the meetings and rallys demanding that the bus return to Harway Avenue.

Reach reporter Will Bredderman at (718) 260–4507 or e-mail him at [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/WillBredderman

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