If ever there was a reason for New York politicians to put their differences aside and join together for the greater good, we think bringing the city’s long-awaited September 11th Memorial Museum to fruition is it. Unfortunately, Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Governor Andrew Cuomo don’t see it that way, and now their professional disagreements have led to another delay in the opening of the $1 billion National 9/11 Memorial and Museum. The monument was supposed to open tomorrow on September 11, 2012, but now it is reportedly being pushed back for at least another year.
The main source of dispute between Bloomberg and Cuomo seems to be over which government agencies will pay the operating costs of the museum. The two politicians are also disagreeing over who will have oversight of the museum and the surrounding memorial, which will document and honor the 3,000 victims of the 2001 attack.
Speaking to the New York Times, Ira M. Millstein, a board member of the Sept. 11 foundation said: “It would be catastrophically sad if they can’t find a solution. They really ought to sit down in a room and look at each other. It can’t be solved with e-mails.”
The museum was originally meant to open in 2009, but clashes over the budget between Port Authority and the 9/11 Foundation that runs the museum saw it delayed. As chairman of the 9/11 Foundation, Bloomberg wants PA to pay the majority of the $150 million in infrastructure costs, but Cuomo and NJ Gov. Chris Christie don’t agree and want to have day-to-day control over the entire WTC site. As a result, the museum may not open till after the 12th anniversary of the attack in 2013.
There are also said to be disputes over the $20 admission fee to the museum which could delay its opening even further. However one Port Authority official summed the entire conflict up to The Gothamist saying: “This whole fight is Cuomo and Bloomberg. And it’s about which one of them is going to control the legacy of 9/11.”