Mark Peters, commissioner of the Department of Investigation, says his actions disprove the notion that he would treat his longtime ally Mayor Bill de Blasio with kid gloves.
"There's tons of evidence of us not being soft on the mayor," said Mr. Peters, who was treasurer of Mr. de Blasio's mayoral campaign and served on a Brooklyn school board with him in the 1990s, during a Crain's editorial board meeting Wednesday.
His agency's mission to root out waste and fraud in city government.
Critics and media accounts have periodically suggested that Mr. Peters may take a light touch with Mr. de Blasio after the mayor appointed him early last year. As Mr. de Blasio's campaign treasurer, he helped raise $20,000 for his Park Slope neighbor's bid to capture City Hall. As such, he faced harsh questioning during his confirmation hearing at the City Council, and continues to face scrutiny every time he appears before lawmakers.
Earlier this month, he endured questions as to why the department's arrests numbers have dropped 67.8% compared with the same period the previous year, under a different commissioner. Mr. Peters said the quality of arrests, as opposed to the quantity, was his focus, citing the February arrest of 50 people, including 11 Department of Buildings inspectors and the top inspection officials in Manhattan and Brooklyn, on charges and corruption.