Monday, May 26, 2014

Park Strategies' state/city lobbying & consultation on Atlantic Yards exceeds $1.7 million since 2009

The transactional relationship between Brooklyn developer Bruce Ratner, a self-described liberal Democrat, and political operative Al D'Amato, the former Republican Senator, is more extensive than previously reported. Beyond the article below about D'Amato's city/state lobbying on behalf of Ratner's Atlantic Yards project, also see coverage of D'Amato's federal lobbying and a curious campaign contribution Forest City Ratner has paid D'Amato's Park Strategies more than $3 million for lobbying and consultation related to Atlantic Yards and the Nassau Coliseum.

Atlantic Yards developer has spent at least $1.7 million even more to pay Park Strategies for state/city lobbying and consultation on Atlantic Yards: at least $1.7 million since 2009. It's not clear exactly what they lobbied about, but it looks like Park Strategies had a hand in Forest City's 2009 renegotiation of the deal to buy Vanderbilt Yard development rights.

The includes $5000 monthly fees for lobbying and additional fees for consultation that average $25,000 a month.

While lobbying began in 2009, the additional fees for consultation began in 2010--a reward for helping renegotiate that MTA deal? For the first six months of 2010, Forest City paid $20,000 a month; for the next six months, it paid $30,000 a month. Since then, it has paid $25,000 a month.

In most two-month periods, the firm reported no issues lobbied. That's not unusual. As Newsday reported 2/17/14, "D'Amato said most of Park Strategies' income isn't from lobbying but rather 'strategic advice,' 'designing programs' and offering expert testimony."

Then again, Forest City is already paying separately for consulting.

2014, $20,000 lobbying, $100,000 consultation (so far, four months)
No subjects lobbied
(note that the contract says they're paid $5000 a month for lobbying, but Park Strategies actually reported $20,000 paid in January-February. I'm not sure if that's a typo)


2013, $60,000 lobbying, $300,000 consultation
No subjects lobbied

2012, $60,000 lobbying, $300,000 consultation
No subjects lobbied

2011, $60,000 lobbying, $300,000 consultation
March-April, May-June, lobbied ADMINISTRATIVE, EXECUTIVE AND LEGISLATIVE BRANCHES OF STATE AND MUNICIPAL GOVERNMENT on "REAL ESTATE AND CONSTRUCTION ISSUES"


2010, $50,000 lobbying, $300,000 consultation
March-April, lobbied NYC Department of Buildings
May-June, lobbied state Senate on "BROOKLYN DEVELOPMENT"



2009, $55,000 lobbying
March-April, May-June, July-August
lobbied  NYS EXECUTIVE OFFICES; NYS MTA/LIRR; EMPIRE STATE DEVELOPMENT
"ATLANTIC YARDS REAL ESTATE DEVELOPMENT PROJECT; STIMULUS FUNDS"

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