Clueless Mayor Bill de Blasio on Tuesday dismissed the fact that the city incredibly failed to pick up on a Hasidic wedding attended by thousands amid COVID-19 this month — scoffing to a reporter, “It’s a big city.”
De Blasio spouted the tone-deaf brush-off even after he acknowledged just how dangerous the Nov. 8 Brooklyn wedding was by announcing late Monday that the city would slap the involved synagogue with a $15,000 fine for breaking coronavirus safety regulations.
In crowing about the fine, de Blasio told NY1 of the dangerous gathering, “That’s just not acceptable, I mean, we’ve been through so much.
“This was amazingly irresponsible, just unacceptable,” the mayor said of the wedding, which The Post exposed over the weekend with video of the crowds while detailing the incredible lengths organizers went to to fly under authorities’ radar.
Yet when asked by a reporter Tuesday whether leaving oversight of social-distancing enforcement to a relatively small number of city authorities wasn’t a bit of “a joke” — especially considering the undetected massive Brooklyn gathering and ongoing rampant local underground party scene — de Blasio insisted his administration’s ability to ferret out scofflaws has “been very, very consistent.
“It’s a big city with more than 8 million people,” the mayor said. “It’s a huge geography to cover, and yet, consistently, when there’s been a problem, the Sheriff’s Office, the Office of Special Enforcement, they’ve done outstanding work.
“You’re going to see some things that unfortunately still happen, but overwhelmingly, I give them credit.”
Asked whether the amount of the wedding fine would be enough of a deterrent against such future gatherings — given that it equates to roughly just $2 per participant — de Blasio shot back, “I think a $15,000 fine gets people’s attention.
“But I think the cease-and-desist order is crucial here,” he said. “From this point on, if there’s any further illegal activity in that building, the building will be closed down. I think that’s a pretty clear deterrent.”
“We don’t want to see that happen to anyone,” Hizzoner said of a property shut-down. “But we need to be very, very clear that folks are doing something dangerous. We can’t allow that to happen.”
A city firehouse is even located next door to the synagogue where the wedding occurred, yet presumably firefighters were unaware of what was going on. The FDNY is among the agencies responsible for helping to handle coronavirus scofflaws.
New York City and the state are experiencing a worrisome surge in virus cases — to the point where the mayor closed Big Apple public schools to in-person learning last week.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Sunday blasted the Hasidic wedding as “a blatant disregard of the law” and had urged the de Blasio administration to investigate how it happened.