Mayor Michael Bloomberg is paying hundreds of thousands of dollars out of his own pocket to fund campaign-style ads rebutting criticisms from unions representing the city's teachers and municipal workers.
Deputy Mayor Howard Wolfson says the ads are a response to $3 million in television and radio advertising by the United Federation of Teachers and the AFL-CIO. One ad says "Bloomberg is working for reforms that help keep the best teachers in the classroom educating our kids. Independence, not for the special interests, but for all New Yorkers."
He says the mayor will pay in the "upper six figures'' for one week of ads.
The 30-second spot is produced by the same media firm that did the mayor's campaign ads and uses old footage from his campaign. It touts the mayor's budget plan for the city and his effort to win state approval to retain teachers based on their effectiveness rather than their seniority.
In response,UFT President Michael Mulgrew said "After spending unprecedented millions to eke out a third term, and despite tabloid editorial pages that serve as an echo chamber for his views, the polls make it clear that New Yorkers are no longer buying the mayor's story."