Buildings Commissioner draws criticism

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Buildings Commissioner Patricia Lancaster has come under criticism following Saturday’s East Side high-rise crane collapse, which killed seven people, and other deadly accidents. While Scott Stringer, the Manhattan borough president, and Queens Councilman Tony Avella have leveled sharp criticisms against Lancaster, others say the city needs to look at whether its resources have kept up with the construction boom. Construction permits increased 36 percent between 2002 and May 2007. Over the past year, safety violations have nearly doubled. Yesterday, the Buildings Department began inspecting all 253 crane sites citywide. 

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