Sunday, December 13, 2015

Shock As Bronx Assemblyman Joins Lobbyist Firm On the Day Skelos Convicted

 Assemblyman Blake Voted for 421-a Which A Developer Client of his New Lobbying Firm Needs to Build Luxury Towers Against the Community Wishes
Bronx Lawmaker Joining National PR Consulting Firm (bronxchronicle) South Bronx Assemblyman Michael Blake Joins Hilltop Public Solutions The political establishment in the Bronx and Albany is agog at journalist Mike Allen’s POLITICO Playbook item reporting that South Bronx Assemblyman Michael Blake is joining Hilltop Public Solutions. * Bronx pol announces side job on same day as Skelos conviction (NYP) Bronx Assemblyman Michael Blake announced Friday that he’s taking a job as a political consultant — without leaving office. The first-term Democrat’s hiring at Hilltop Public Solutions comes amid calls for a ban on such outside income following the convictions of ex-Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver and ex-Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos. The state Legislative Ethics Commission approved the job, concluding that it would not conflict with his legislative duties. Michael Benjamin, who preceded Blake in the same Assembly seat from 2003 to 2010, criticized the arrangement. “This isn’t appropriate given the climate we’re in,” he said. “Not everything that is legal is appropriate for a sitting lawmaker.”
@unitedNYblogs -Oh great, a lawmaker converting tax$ into Blake$$! Preet, Preet where art thou? Blake wants a SDNY's crooked moron award!

Lobbyist Assemblyman Blake Company Works For A 421-a Developer Who Used the Mayor's 1NY PAC to Fight the Community
.Fortis Hires Hyers Hilltop Firm With de Blasio Connections for LICHSite Proposal  Community Opposes Fortis Mega Development Which Hired Hyers   Struggle Over Controversial LICH Development Rocks CobbleHill Neighborhood Association  1.Hilltop's Hyers: de Blasio Campaign Manager Who Uses Candidate Fake Arrest to Protest A Closing Hospital As A Prop   2. Once the Hospital is Closed Hilltop's Hyers: Who Works for the Mayor Slush Fund PAC One NY Uses It to Tell the Community That the Band Aid ER the Developer Agreed to Build is As Good As the Closed Hospital  3. Hilltop's Hyers: Sell A Large Development to Replace te Closed to A Community Who Opposes It

Alarm raised about ‘dark money’ in de Blasio’s LICH -Fortis letter (Brooklyn Eagle)  The backlash continues against a letter sent out by a de Blasio lobbying group supporting the sale of Brooklyn’s Long Island College Hospital (LICH) to a developer.  The controversial June 26 letter touts the “stand-alone ER” that will be replacing the historic hospital. Although it was signed by Carroll Gardens’ resident Gary Reilly, the letter was mailed from the headquarters of de Blasio lobbyists operating under the name “The Campaign for One New York.” In the letter, Reilly says, “I was asked by Mayor de Blasio to share my views on what [the sale of LICH] means for families in Cobble Hill, Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn Heights, Boerum Hill, Downtown Brooklyn and Red Hook.” The outcome, Reilly writes, “. . . is a lot better than we had reason to think one year ago.”

 With SUNY selling the hospital complex to developer Fortis Property Group, “We will have a freestanding, high quality emergency room, with up to 20 observational beds.” The letter has evoked a storm of criticism from residents of these neighborhoods who fought for more than a year to save the hospital, and who supported de Blasio in his campaign for mayor largely based on his promise to save LICH. That promise was seemingly forgotten after the election, however. In its statement, the BHA disputes the letter’s claim that a “stand-alone ER” could replace the 156-year-old hospital. After consulting area doctors, BHA found that patients with serious conditions would have to be transported to other hospitals to be treated.  “When seconds count, we’ll be out of luck,” their statement reads. BHA lists some of the conditions that will not be able to be treated at the Fortis ER, including, “acute heart attack or cardiac arrest, acute stroke, most pediatric emergencies, massive gastrointestinal bleed, pulmonary embolism, appendicitis, overwhelming infection leading to acute shock, high-risk pregnancy with bleeding, or other major traumas, including car accidents.” (See full letter below this article.) 

The Campaign for One New York is led by Bill Hyers, de Blasio’s campaign manager. Its treasurer, Ross Offinger, is the mayor’s former campaign finance director. De Blasio’s former campaign consultant Stephanie Yazgi serves as its secretary. This means that the same team that crafted de Blasio’s election campaign -- and his pre-election message that closing LICH would plunge Brooklyn into a health crisis – has created his post-election message that LICH’s sale and development is good news. Hyers, who joined the powerful public affairs and political consulting firm Hilltop Public Solutions in December, operates out of its New York City office at 32 Court Street in Downtown Brooklyn. The Campaign for One New York also operates out of 32 Court Street. Dr. Arnold Licht, chairman of the Department of Psychiatry at LICH for 25 years, said in a letter addressed to Reilly, “I would hope that you are medically naïve and thus led astray by your ‘experts.’ The alternative is that you are simply a toady for the  de Blasio camp and the Mayor’s abandoning LICH to the big money real estate interests. Perhaps you know what the Mayor will get himself arrested for in his next campaign as LICH won’t be around for him to use next time.” Dr. Toomas Sorra, a member of Concerned Physicians for LICH, told the Brooklyn Eagle, “The Reilly letter seems to be a blatant attempt by Mayor de Blasio to justify his desertion of LICH. The Fortis ER will not provide the backup necessary for any acute emergency, whether that be cardiac, major trauma, surgical, obstetrical or otherwise. If you have suspected appendicitis, have vaginal bleeding and are 30 weeks pregnant, have major rectal bleeding or any other similar problem, the message is: Don't go to Fortis ER if you have anything serious!”

Media and Good Govt Groups Cover Up How Lobbyists Were at the Center Of Corruption In Both Silver and Skelos Convictions
Lobbyist Cites Unease Over Payments to Sheldon Silver (NYT) The meeting at the State Capitol in Albany took place nearly four years ago, but Richard Runes, a lobbyist who oversees government relations for Glenwood Management, a major real estate developer in New York, recalled his unease at what he had discussed with Sheldon Silver, then the speaker of the Assembly. The two men had spoken about an agreement between Mr. Silver and Glenwood, in which Mr. Silver received undisclosed payments from a law firm to which Mr. Silver had allegedly pushed Glenwood to refer some of its tax business. Mr. Runes, testifying on Monday in Mr. Silver’s federal corruption trial in Manhattan, said he felt “shock and surprise” at the news of the payments. Mr. Runes’s testimony, which began on Friday, is part of the second prong of the government’s case, in which prosecutors say Mr. Silver received about $700,000 in illegal payments from the law firm Goldberg & Iryami in return for having referred it certain tax business from Glenwood and a second developer, the Witkoff Group.

For Months True News Has Been Reporting the Interlocking-Directorates of the Corrupt Shadow Govt That Controls NY
On Friday, another Glenwood lobbyist, Brian Meara, testified that while vacationing in Florida in 2011, he received a call from Mr. Silver, who mentioned how he might need to file new forms disclosing certain fees he had received. Mr. Meara said he was “surprised and concerned” and called either Mr. Runes or Charles C. Dorego, a Glenwood executive. Mr. Runes testified that he spoke with Glenwood’s owner, Leonard Litwin, and Mr. Dorego. Yet Mr. Runes said he remained “uncomfortable with the arrangement,” and did not discuss it with anyone else. “It was too hot,” he said.  Ultimately, Mr. Silver’s fee-sharing arrangement was described in a side letter that the speaker signed, but it was omitted from the retainer agreement between Glenwood and the law firm. Mr. Runes, asked by the judge, Valerie E. Caproni, what he thought was being accomplished by putting the agreement in a separate letter, said he believed that retainer documents were filed publicly, “whereas the side letter would not be.” * Albany lobbyist Richard Rune said he felt uneasy over payments to then-Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver for referring tax business to a firm and for outlining related terms outside of the main retainer, The New York Times reports: 

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