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Ratner, Critics Face Deadlines

The Empire State Development Corp. is expected to approve Bruce Ratner's plan for a new Nets arena Friday, the next to last step before final approval. The question, however, is who will vote on that final approval. The Public Authorities Control Board has the final say, but one of its members is New York's governor. If the board votes before December 31, the governor's vote will be cast by supporter George Pataki. If after, it will be up to Elliot Spitzer, whose position is less clear.