Richard Ravitch spells out how to get things done

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Richard Ravitch at Waterside’s 40th anniversary celebration (Photo by Sabina Mollot)

By Sabina Mollot

Waterside Plaza owner and developer Richard Ravitch, the former lieutenant governor of New York and one-time chair of the MTA, recently penned a memoir on his life as a public servant and builder that is also a cautionary tale about fiscal management. Now 80, Ravitch was at the forefront of reviving New York’s financial heartbeat during the 1970s, and tried to do the same for the MTA, almost getting shot in the process. He stood up for the financial well-being of tenants living in the homes he built while facing the realities of what it costs to develop and maintain regulated housing. Ravitch also ran for mayor and has served in numerous government advisory roles.

In April, he released his biography, So Much to Do ($27, Public Affairs), which has already had a second printing in New York. Recently, after returning from a literary tour, Ravitch talked with Town & Village about his book and his experience dealing with the effects of government borrowing while also attempting to fund services vital to New Yorkers…

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