De Blasio Donation Ethics Case Ends as Developer Settles

(THE CITY) , November 17, 2019

Yet another developer Mayor Bill de Blasio hit up for a donation has agreed to settle an ethics investigation into a check written to the mayor’s now-defunct nonprofit, a state watchdog agency announced Wednesday.

Douglaston Development LLC will pay $10,000 to end the case brought by the state Joint Commission on Public Ethics (JCOPE). The commission previously reached settlements with three other major developers the mayor had solicited for contributions to his Campaign for One New York.

Entities that are lobbying City Hall for favorable treatment are prohibited from giving gifts to public officials — or to third parties designated by a public official. JCOPE was looking at the donations to the mayor’s nonprofit as illegal gifts.

As THE CITY revealed in May, de Blasio called a Douglaston executive a few weeks after City Hall transferred city-owned land to the developer and approved $12 million in financing for Crossroads Plaza — a project that involved building 425 units of affordable housing in Mott Haven.