An Op Ed written by: Winston Fisher, Stuart Appelbaum, Carol Conslato, Steve Hindy, Ken Knuckles and Kathryn Wylde that appeared in Crain’s New York Business states that, “Greg David’s column “Why enormous subsidies for a Staten Island mall?” reflects a misunderstanding of how and why public funds were allocated by the state and city to the Empire Outlets project.”

The Op Ed provides insight into why members of the New York City Regional Economic Development Council gave their support to the project in 2013, reminding the reader that in 2013 Staten Island was struggling to recover from the destruction caused by Super Storm Sandy and following the storm, waterfront projects along the coastline which were designed to provide economic development opportunities, such as Empire Outlets which is providing an estimated $180 million in economic benefit during construction and creating 2500 jobs, were required to make improvements to the infrastructure in order to protect the public from future storms.