Albanese exhorts rivals to give back real estate cash

TRD New York /
Aug.August 14, 2013 10:00 AM

Longshot Democratic candidate for mayor Sal Albanese is blasting his rivals for accepting campaign donations from the likes of Extell Development and Silverstein Properties, urging them to return the money, Crain’s reported.

The Moreland Commission, a state corruption panel created by Gov. Andrew Cuomo, recently issued subpoenas to five top developers in New York — Extell, Thor Equities, Silverstein Properties, Fisher Brothers and Friedman Management — demanding details on their campaign donations and perhaps improper receipt of tax abatements at projects underway in the city.  Albanese noted that the five firms have collectively donated tens of thousands of dollars to the four most prominent mayoral candidates.

“When you’ve sold your integrity to the highest bidder, how can we trust you to follow through on building affordable housing or holding developers accountable?” Albanese said in a statement seen by Crain’s.

Christine Quinn has accepted $79,125 from entities affiliated with the five real estate firms that received subpoenas from the Moreland Commission, according to Crain’s. Bill de Blasio has received $42,100, former Bill Thompson $30,660 and Anthony Weiner $37,550, Albanese said, per the magazine.

None of the candidates responded to Albanese’s requests that they return the money.

None of the firms have yet been accused of any wrongdoing by authorities, however, and the donations represent only 0.8 percent of the $22.2 million raised by the four candidates so far. It is unclear whether developers had ever offered funds to Albanese’s campaign. [Crain’s] Hiten Samtani

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