Saturday, January 16, 2016

Ratner, colleagues only fraction of big support for de Blasio

From today's New York Times, Mayor de Blasio’s Top Political Advisers Got $500,000 in 6 Months, Records Say:
Mayor Bill de Blasio’s top political consultants, some of whom also represent clients with interests before City Hall, were paid about $500,000 in the last six months by the mayor’s campaign fund and a nonprofit group created to advance his agenda, according to financial records disclosed on Friday.
The bulk of the payments came from the nonprofit, the Campaign for One New York, which several of Mr. de Blasio’s former campaign advisers run. The group, which led his efforts on the national political stage, can accept unlimited contributions from donors because it operates outside of New York City’s strict campaign finance rules.
In November, the group received a $250,000 contribution from the family of George Soros, the wealthy liberal donor, and a $200,000 contribution from Unite Here, a labor union once led by John Wilhelm, who is Mr. de Blasio’s cousin. Two real estate firms with business in New York City — DDG Partners and TF Cornerstone — also donated to the group last year, the records show.
The consulting fees went to three firms — BerlinRosen, Hilltop Public Solutions, and AKPD Message and Media — that employ consultants who routinely advise Mr. de Blasio on political matters, sometimes more often than his City Hall aides.
Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo also disclosed records on Friday showing he had raised nearly $900,000 from limited-liability companies, or L.L.C.s, whose influence he is now seeking to curb.
The article also notes that de Blasio's re-election campaign committee also disclosed documents, having raised $1,065,908 in the last six month, and spent far less, including on polling:
The donors to Mr. de Blasio’s campaign included the venture capitalist Fred Wilson; influential real estate players including Bruce Ratner and the Walentas family; and Randy L. Levine, the president of the Yankees. (Mr. de Blasio, who grew up in the Boston area, is a Red Sox fan.)
The Ratner contribution (see NYCCFB) is actually relatively minor: Bruce Ratner and colleagues Ashley Cotton, MaryAnne Gilmartin, and Bob Sanna each gave $400. Ratner's wife Pamela Lipkin, however, gave the maximum, $4,950, as did his sister-in-law, Karen Ranucci.

Ratner's already given a bunch more to Cuomo, $20,000. Lipkin recently gave another $5,000. It's only prudent.

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