Walsh reviewing Red Sox deal
Agreement makes permanent Van Ness Street arrangement
THE ADMINISTRATION OF Boston Mayor Marty Walsh said it is reviewing an agreement the city struck with the Boston Red Sox in October that formalized a long-standing arrangement allowing the club to close off Van Ness Street during Fenway Park events.
The agreement, signed by Red Sox president Larry Lucchino and Mayor Thomas Menino’s police and transportation commissioners, makes permanent what appears to have been an informal arrangement between the club and the city allowing the team to close off the section of Van Ness next to Fenway during games. The Red Sox typically used part of the street for employee parking, paying no fee to the city to do so.
We also noted that the story was Xerox-reported by numerous other news outlets – including the Boston Herald and the Associated Press – without crediting CommonWealth.
What we failed to note was this further rip-off by the Herald.
Reporter Colman Herman wrote this in his piece: “No other single private entity is allowed to close off a street in Boston on a regular basis.”
In Richard Weir’s Herald report, that sentence is placed in the mouth of Gregory Sullivan, “the former state former [sic] inspector general . . . [who] dismisses the Sox’ arguments as ‘irrelevant and a smokescreen.'”
“This is another precious gem dropped into the Red Sox basket at the expense of the taxpayers,” Sullivan, the research director of the Pioneer Institute, said of the Van Ness Street contract. “It’s a public street owned by the city of Boston. And no private party should have exclusive rights to use it in this way without compensating the city. Period. … No other single private entity is allowed to close off a street in Boston on a regular basis.” [Emphasis added]
We have it on good authority that Sullivan contends he never said that last part.
Back to you, Boston Herald and Richard Weir.