The Real Deal New York

Powerful landlord group RSA has nearly $2M in political dry powder

Glenwood Management, Parkoff Org and LeFrak help fill campaign coffers
By Rich Bockmann | July 17, 2017 04:15PM

RSA President Joseph Strasburg

The Rent Stabilization Association has a political war chest of nearly $2 million after donors like Glenwood Management, the Parkoff Organization and the LeFrak Organization helped fill the coffers earlier this year.

Through two of its affiliated political action committees, the RSA has $1.98 million on hand to spend on state political races, according to recent campaign finance filings with the state Board of Elections.

The larger of the two PACs, the Neighborhood Preservation Political Action Fund, had $1.2 million on hand as of July 13, records show.

Major contributors include Carole Litwin Pittelman, daughter of late Glenwood Management founder Leonard Litwin, and her family’s real estate firm, which contributed a combined total of $65,000. The Parkoff Organization donated $40,000, and the LeFrak Organization opened its checkbook to the tune of $30,000.

Last week former State Assembly speaker Sheldon Silver successfully had the courts overturn his 2015 corruption conviction, which centered on political donations from companies like Glenwood Management that were traded for political favors.

A December analysis by The Real Deal and ProPublica found that Glenwood, operating mostly through LLCs, gave at least $9 million to state politicians between 2000 and 2014.

In the RSA’s latest filings, BFC Partners’ managing principal Donald Capoccia personally forked over $10,000, and Pamela Harrison-Ludwick of the Brooklyn-based family firm M&R Management donated $12,500.

Through the first six months of the year, the Neighborhood Preservation PAC raised a little more than $491,000 and spent almost $173,000, with the largest donations going to state Republican committees as well as the Conservative and Independence Parties.

The smaller of the landlord group’s political committees, the RSA PAC, had nearly $770,000 on hand as of mid-July after raising more than $387,000, mostly from a large contribution the RSA made.

The Real Estate Board of New York, through its Jobs for New York committee and Real Estate Board PAC, had roughly $391,000 at its disposal, campaign finance filings show.