Boom! Hiss! That’s the sound of Brooklyn residents, who are missing out on Macy’s 4th of July fireworks for the fifth consecutive year. But this time, it has nothing to do with the retailer refusing to return the annual fanfare to the East River.
Instead, according to the New York Daily News, Mayor Bloomberg nixed Macy’s proposal to combine the show on the Hudson River, facing New Jersey—with an added East River display. Bloomberg claims the “cash-strapped NYPD” can’t afford to pay for extra security.
Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz, citing the Mayor’s $2 million bill for added cops, tells the Daily News, “Just imagine fireworks on all sides of Manhattan televised throughout America and the world. It would have been an unbelievable show and worth the investment, but I don’t make those decisions.”
Last year, a public rally was held by Kings County officials to voice disdain over the Macy’s ongoing snub. In 2009, it relocated the Independence Day tradition to the Hudson to commemorate Henry Hudson’s exploration of the waterway 400 years ago—and kept it there. State Sen. Daniel Squadron said then, “The New York City firework show should be city-wide. Right now, New Jersey gets to enjoy the fireworks while Brooklyn, Queens and the Bronx are left out of the party. That is simply unacceptable.”
Macy’s agreed to expand the fireworks to both sides after a local unnamed company agreed to sponsor the fireworks—until Bloomberg swiped it off the table. Markowitz adds, “The city did not feel it was worth that money, especially since the Boston marathon experience and the bombings, the cost of security to the NYPD and ultimately, to New York City, would have been high.”
This year’s fireworks display will be scored and designed by urban artist Usher. Some 40,000 shells will be launched from barges positioned on the Hudson between 24th and 40th streets.
Squadron continues to fight for Brooklyn’s right to party: “It shouldn’t be too late. We urge the city to allow millions more New Yorkers to be part of the July 4th celebration,” he tells the Daily News. Markowitz agrees: “We are hoping someone out there has an appeal for fireworks and helps pay for it. There’s still time.”