In a conscious effort to make a point regarding the state of the country’s economy, billionaire Mayor Bloomberg has decided to scrap this year’s inaugural gala ceremony after his inaugural address on New Year’s Day.
After spending $4 million of his own money on his first two inaugural galas, billionaire Mayor Bloomberg has decided that this year such money on a gala would seem “excessive or out of place during a time of economic anxiety, in a city struggling with double-digit unemployment and facing extensive cuts in subway service,” according to city officials close to the administration.
In 2002, Mayor Bloomberg held a traditional reception at the former Tweed Courthouse for the inaugural gala followed in 2006 by an event at a bank near City Hall with thousands of doughnuts and cupcakes and a performance by Liza Minnelli, all paid for by him. This year, the mayor is being more conservative in his celebrations and instead spending New Year’s Day participating in public service projects across the city to help promote his N.Y.C. Service initiative. One such project includes putting together care packages at Staten Island Borough Hall for local troops stationed abroad.
While the mayor’s office declined comment on the matter, city officials close to the administration said that Bloomberg was “cognizant” of the poor timing a large scale celebration would be considering the state of the economy.
Bloomberg is the wealthiest person in the city and just spent more than $100 million to win a third term, although the margin was smaller than expected.