Political Profit. Does the Campaign Finance Board (CFB) Penalize? Prosecute? Or Pretend It’s Not There?
By HEZI ARIS

eHezi Campaign Trail, Community, Governance, History, Law, New York City, New York State, People, Political Analysis, Politics 40 Comments

The Policing Elections Hezitorial

NEW YORK, NY — April 29, 2021 — Silly season is upon us, better known as “election” season.

There is a lot at stake in upcoming elections for office as there will be a significant change of guard in governments. Policing elections is up to the Campaign Finance Board (CFB) in New York City and State Board of Elections (SBOE) outside New York City. Both agencies are tasked with ensuring the candidates for office follow the rules to limit the prospect of corruption.

Specific to New York City, reforms took place in the late 1980’s after Mayor Ed Koch advocated to change things after Borough of Queens President Donald R. Manes was caught in the midst of fixing contracts with the Parking Violations Bureau and taking bribes.

The CFB conducts extensive audits and can impose fines ranging from $100 to several thousand dollars per violation. For example, a perusal of the “Outstanding Penalties and Repayments of Public Funds Owed” to the CFB shows:

ISSUE 1: $59,559 is owed by Thomas Pierre-Lopez: “Crain’s New York Business”. On November 22, 2019 it was divulged, “A fringe candidate … got grabby with the city’s money, a probe by the Campaign Finance Board found. Thomas Lopez-Pierre will have to repay $54,107 of the $99,180 in matching funds the CFB gave him for his failed 2017 bid to oust City Councilman Mark Levine of Manhattan—plus $6,182 in fines for assorted forms of malfeasance. The panel charged him with failing to account for more than $10,000 in transactions, failing to report more than $12,000 in contributions, exceeding the $100 limit on individual cash expenditures, using campaign funds for personal purposes and making campaign expenditures after the election was over.

ISSUE 2: 71,730 is owed by Felipe Luciano,

ISSUE 3: $74,278 is owed by Everly Brown,

ISSUE 4: $83,375 is owed by Dexter A. McKenzie, and

ISSUE 5: $138,658 is owed by Diana Reyna.

When it comes to donor violations, candidates get in trouble for not properly reporting where donations come from and not complying with the CFB’s procedures and protocols. Excess monies are to be given back from donors who do business with the “city’ and whatever monies donated to a candidate must be disclosed. Further, candidates for office that seek Public Matching Funds may not accept contributions from political committees that are not registered with the CFB.

We received a complaint from a reader that grieved to the CFB about “the flamboyant Curtis Sliwa, who is running for mayor on the Republican ticket, openly campaigning while wearing his Guardian Angel attire.” The central question behind the complaint is if the Guardian Angels is a non-profit and not a registered political committee with the CFB, then how can they make contributions to Sliwa’s Mayoral campaign?

According to Constantinos (Gus) Prentzas, he contacted authorities about these potential violations involving the non-profit Guardian Angels and its founder Curtis Sliwa; however, he has not heard back from them.

Politically profiting off the goodwill built by non-profits is clearly prohibited by the CFB. The Internal Revenue Service has even more strict rules limiting political activity of non-profits.

This is what prompted us to ask what does the CFB do?

They have a long list of outstanding debt that they obviously will not collect for political reasons. And when people complain about potential violations, it falls on deaf ears. How come?

Recently, there was a kerfuffle with New York City’s former Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan’s New York City mayoral campaign. It came to light a week after the CFB questioned the relationship between a Political Action Committee that dumped $2 million into advertising to boost Donovan’s mayoral bid. It turned out that the major donor was Donovan’s father and through legal wrangling the CFB ultimately allowed candidate Donovan to obtain nearly $1.5 million in matching funds.

Is that it? Doe one have to be super wealthy or well connected to obscure election law rules? 

In the alternative, perhaps, the CFB is waiting to act on current issues until after the upcoming Primary elections in June?

Will the Campaign Finance Board (CFB) ever become sufficiently transparent with the taxpayer’s election matching funds and prove themselves worthy of the electorates’ trust when the numbers noted herein suggest they cannot?

eHeziPolitical Profit. Does the Campaign Finance Board (CFB) Penalize? Prosecute? Or Pretend It’s Not There?
By HEZI ARIS

Comments 40

    1. I suppose you mean their, but point taken. The connections between the Yonkers Power Families still remains, even after conviction and rehabilitation.
      Maybe Yonkers needs to find a candidate whose last name is different then those who served before.

      1. Yonkers was fortunate to have nick spano on their sides for decades , to this day he continues to do what’s best for Yonkers.

        Thanks nick!

  1. I will tell my story on my timeline not yours. It’s not as easy as me just telling the residents what needs to be known. We have a visitor from out of state that will stand with me when I tell my story. You see, she also has quite the story to tell. Arrangements are made for her to be in New York. At such time, our story will be told. Stay tuned.

    1. I support you, Karen. You’re doing a brave thing, and I am sure that your testimony will help many others come forward and tell their stories. Every single person who has worked in that office has dozens of stories demonstrating Khader’s racism, misogyny, ineptitude and unsuitability for office.

  2. Why do you lie to everyone you speak to Mike Khader?

    Why did you raise water rates while running saying you would reduce them?

    Why did you raise taxes while running you said you wouldn’t?

    Why did you hire all family yet you ran and said you wouldn’t?

    Why do you treat women the way you do?

    Why did you accept a city car when you said you wouldn’t?

    Why do you use this car for political campaigning?

    Why has everyone that has worked for you quit?

    Why did you take a vote that will allow for good people to lose property they purchased with their own hard owned money to give it to other people (sic)

    Why do you rent a office from a man that you employ and pay zero in rent? Jeffrey Buss

    Why did you lie to every gas station owner claiming you will give 24 hrs yet didn’t push for it.

    What money have you revived from mpac?

    Do mpac members know that money goes to you?

    Why did you treat 2 specific women in your office the way you did and do?

    They will be coming forward soon along with a surprise women that is set to (hint) fly in from a another state to speak to all Yonkers residents.

    The games are over Mike Khader. You fooled me once not again. The time has come for you to resign. Save your wife and children the embarrassment. Because embarrassment is coming your way soon.
    I have many many more questions

    Karen

  3. Mike khader is not a good man. He lies and worst than that, he is a womanizer. On top of that. He treats women like poop on his shoe. Ask anything that has worked for him. I’m one of those people and soon Yonkers will hear my story. Sleep well Mikey. Your wife will be so proud of you.

    1. Stop threatening and tell your story. You appear really fake with all your unsubstantiated allegations. Be real, say it now… if it’s real. Otherwise, stop as actually..you make women who have experienced real discrimination and harassment look fake, hallow and dishonest. You diminish, rather than empower. If you’ve experienced abuse, your abuse, should be more important than political timing. So tell your story Karen!

      1. We have to time the release of this story for maximum effect.
        Mike Khader must be prohibited from running for any office.

  4. I was at the Mayors event last night. What a amazing showing he had. I took notice of a few things. Firstly, all members of the council were present as well as hopefuls except Mike khader. He was no where to be found. I did get to meet Collins at the event. She seemed to be very comfortable.

      1. You are really bigoted! Racist, too! All areas of the city need attention, not just Black and Hispanic! Irish, Italians, Greeks, Germans and all nationalities in this city are important.

  5. Last night, while Corazon Pineda is sucking up to fat cat developers at Mayor Spano’s Fundraiser, a 6 year old got shot in Nodine Hill. Corazon must go ! She’s a do nothing legislator

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        Author

        Your accusation is as sickening as I have ever seen. It suggests that you were the culprit, Pineda-Isaacs. I ugliest you red the sicko. Is this Yonkers? Not in my mind. Your next call hold be a psych rest. Note: At first I was going to trash thi, but people need to see how people like you are demeaning CoY. Your comment is ugly and “fake” by every measure. —- Kindly, Hezi

    1. A 47 year old hard working Mexican trying to earn a honest living was killed by a male BLACK-where was Pineda-Issacs-where is the outrage from Mayor Spano or the Black community?-there is none because all they know how to do is point fingers and blame everybody else.

      1. Post
        Author
  6. Interesting article which elucidates many deficiencies in the CFB. Is there a cap on the contribution that a family member can give to a campaign? Couldn’t the matching funds be placed in escrow (released in increments) and if the candidate drops out, the collection
    becomes easier?

  7. This article is so timely. Just today, I tried to see campaign finance reports for Westchester candidates at the BOE website. And guess what, no info available. Why is that? Wanted to see what funds all the Yonkers candidates have in their coffers. If you can access this info online, please advise.

    1. If they are incumbents they should have long established accounts readily available. You either look up their surname or their committee name and have to key in the time period you are searching and a dollar amount between $1 and up. This link below should work. If it doesn’t write back and I will look up for you.

      https://www.elections.ny.gov/contribandexpend.html

      Joan Gronowski

  8. How does Khader get a way with using his Yonkers City Council President Mike Khader for campaigning purposes? Does his staff paid by Yonkers update his social media page?

  9. Khader didn’t file financial disclosures with the state BOE. To be fair, neither did Bellamy, but he should know better.

      1. The problem with Bellamy-Collins is that her only real qualification is that she knows how to game the system for her own gain and when challenged hides under the Women of Color shield.

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