The Real Deal New York

De Blasio donor with building issues gets VIP treatment

Roberta Kaplan gets same-day service from DOB and HPB

August 18, 2015 10:44AM

From left: Roberta Kaplan and Mayor Bill de Blasio walking with Avi Fink

From left: Roberta Kaplan and Mayor Bill de Blasio walking with Avi Fink

In politics, you’re damned if you do, damned if you don’t. The de Blasio administration is facing scrutiny for promptly assisting a city property owner – who also happens to be a major donor – having problems at her building.

When Roberta Kaplan, a partner at the law firm Paul, Weiss, lost her heat and hot water due to a busted water main at her swanky co-op at 31 West 12th Street in Greenwich Village, she called in her City Hall connections.

She received help from Avi Fink, the deputy director for intergovernmental affairs. He answered her missive the same day, apologized for the delay and told her that both the Department of Buildings and the Department of Housing Preservation and Development were working on her problem, Politico reported.

Kaplan’s original complaint was marked priority B, meaning it wasn’t an emergency. The DOB normally responds to such complains in an average of 34.6 days, according to the 2015 Preliminary Mayor’s Management Report.

Kaplan’s $4,950 de Blasio contribution was the largest sum allowed by law. She’s also given to a variety of other Democratic candidates, her lifetime contributions totaling over $100,000 according to city, state and federal campaign finance records.

She purchased her apartment in 2007 for $1.7 million, according to city records. [Politico] Ariel Stulberg