Shaun Donovan on Friday touted himself as a mayoral candidate best equipped to both secure funding from the federal government and trim fat from a city budget that became bloated under Mayor de Blasio.
Donovan — who served as President Barack Obama’s budget director and HUD Secretary and oversaw housing under Mayor Mike Bloomberg — vowed to bring his Washington, D.C. and government know-how to City Hall at a time when the Big Apple is still reeling from the COVID-19 pandemic and facing fiscal peril.
“The question is who’s the candidate in this race who you actually believe could get this budget challenge under control and invest in the kinds of things I’m talking about,” Donovan said in a speech to the Association for a Better New York on Friday morning. “People forget that President Obama faced the biggest budget deficit since World War II, and we actually brought that deficit down faster than anytime since World War II, while getting the Affordable Care Act done, while getting big investments in infrastructure and housing.”
Donovan said he aims to cut costs through finalizing the closure of Rikers Island, instituting the kind of agency-by-agency cost savings that were employed during the Bloomberg era and “aggressively” managing attrition of the city’s workforce.