Saturday, February 23, 2008

Is Claire a lobbyist or not?

Former Queens Borough President Claire Shulman has been pushing hard for the city-led plan to redevelop Willets Point, leading an advocacy group, the Flushing, Willets Point, Corona Local Development Corporation (which is funded in part by the city), and pushing elected officials and community leaders to support the multi-billion-dollar redo of the 61-acre manufacturing and auto-repair district by Shea Stadium. (Lots more on the Willets Point development effort here.)

So should Ms. Shulman, who is president of the LDC, be registered as a lobbyist?

Willets Point I: Should Former Queens BP Shulman File As Lobbyist?

Not entirely clear. Ms. Shulman’s own lobbyists—the Parkside Group, which is retained by the LDC—says she has been following the law.

“The LDC has always and will always meet all requirements of the lobbying law, and we’ll check with the city clerk's office,” said Evan Stavisky, a partner at Parkside.

The law says that anyone who expends, incurs or receives more than $2,000 in lobbying compensation and expenses should register.

Dick Dadey, the executive director of Citizens Union, said Ms. Shulman should be registered.

“If she herself is spending time supervising the lobbying activity or doing the lobbying activity, and crossing that threshold, then she would need to be registered,” Mr. Dadey said.

Also of note, the Parkside Group represents both the redevelopment advocate LDC and the Central Labor Council, the leading union group that has criticized the city’s early plans for Willets Point for not including labor guarantees.

I'm still scratching my head over this one from yesterday:

And to drum up support in the immediate area, the city has been giving funding to a Willets Point redevelopment advocacy group led by former Queens Borough President Claire Shulman, Deputy Mayor Robert Lieber confirmed, boosting an organization that has brought on a lobbying team of its own for the push. The city has approved up to $250,000 in matching funds for Ms. Shulman’s group.

Am I reading this right - taxpayer money is funding Parkside? Is that how corrupt this has gotten?

Photo from Queens Tribune


Anonymous said...

How can they do this and not go to jail? Do they have the judges in their pocket?

Anonymous said...

Who is funding this LDC besides the City? Developers? Foreign special interet goups from Flushing like TDC and Fultonex?

Where's the money coming from, and besides Shulman and Parkside, where's the money going?

Anonymous said...

That is the ugliest granchild I've ever seen.

Anonymous said...

wonder if she spends any quality time with the eagle at the Queens Zoo that was named after her?

Anonymous said...

I'd call Claire the real dog in this photo
but I refuse to insult that cute cuddly canine creature
by putting her in its league!

Now doesn't our ex bovine/beep
look like she just swallowed her cud?

Anonymous said...

She looks like she just swallowed Donald Manes.

Anonymous said...

This beaming faced Borden's "Bessie "
with her ill fitting over-sized dentures
did as much as former boss Manes
to obliterate Queens' history.....

There were actually MORE
landmark designations under
Donald's administration than under Claire's!

She must have slept with
Donny's destruction blueprints under her pillow,
and before her second cup of morning coffee,
was on the phone with the Huangs and such.

What did she get in exchange for greasing through
their "development" plans?

Her palm greased with greenbacks....probably!

Anonymous said...

From an advisory opinion available online at the web site of the Office of the City Clerk:

"It is the opinion of the City Clerk that all efforts to influence the determinations of Community Boards are "lobbying" or "lobbying activity" under Administrative Code Section 3-211 and those who attempt to influence the determinations of Community Boards must register as lobbyists with the City Clerk."

Earlier this year, Shulman made a unique presentation to Queens Community Board 7, to encourage the Board to vote in favor of the proposed redevelopment of Willets Point. Accordingly, Shulman has engaged in "lobbying activity" as specified by the City Clerk's advisory opinion, and must register as a lobbyist.

Willful failure to file is a class A misdemeanor, and may be subject to a $30,000.00 fine. Late filing also carries stiff penalties.

There remains the question of whether or not Shulman has accepted or expensed more than $2,000.00 annually during her lobbying efforts. It is possible that if she has not, then she may not be subject to the filing requirement. However, given the LDC's large budget and Shulman's appearance at nearly every significant event in connection with Willets Point, it appears likely that, she would have to be compensated, or that she would incur significant expenses, either of which would trigger the filing requirement.

Why does no one press for an investigation of this?