Bill Thompson Uses Same Consultants as Marine Transfer Station Foe

By Victoria Bekiempis on June 17, 2013 12:26pm 

Slideshow
 Mayoral Candidate Bill Thompson uses the same consultants on his campaign as marine transfer station opponents.
Bill Thompson and Anti-MTS Cash
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YORKVILLE — Mayoral hopeful Bill Thompson has used the same consulting firm as a real estate company opposed to the East 91st Street Marine Transfer Station — the controversial trash site that has become a hot-button issue on the campaign trail.

The former city comptroller and runner-up in the 2009 election has paid Pitta Bishop Del Giorno & Giblin LLC $50,078 since December 2011 for "campaign consulting," according to documents posted on the New York City Campaign Finance Board website.

Since 2009, Glenwood Management, a real estate company with several buildings near the planned trash transfer project, also paid the firm $650,000.

The company paid Pitta Bishop Del Giorno & Giblin LLC $150,000 per year in 2009, 2010, 2011, and 2012, financial documents show. It paid the firm $50,000 in 2013, too, records show.

The East 91st Street project — which residents fear will bring bringing vermin, noise and a host of health and traffic-safety problems to the area — was recently propelled from being a primarily neighborhood controversy to a top talking point both for mayoral contenders and pols across the city.

Top UES Democratic clubs refused to back mayoral front runner City Council Speaker Christine Quinn because of her support for the station. Quinn and Thompson also traded barbs over the her assertion that anti-MTS activism constitutes "environmental racism."

This financial information is not the first time that attention has been paid to potential ties between Thompson and anti-MTS cash.

The New York Times previously reported that Thompson's biggest fundraiser started lobbying for Residents for Sane Trash Solutions in January for a $5,000 monthly fee. The paper also noted that Glenwood executives donated $14,850 to Thompson's campaign.

Quinn, meanwhile, did receive $24,500 from Glenwood staffers, but did so in 2007 and 2011, the paper reported.

Asked whether Thompson's use of Pitta Bishop had any impact on Thompson, a campaign spokesman told DNAinfo.com in a statement: "Absolutely not."

"He's opposed to the site because it exposes more people, more kids, and more minorities to environmental hazard that any other site in the city's plan," the e-mail said.

Jon Del Giorno, a partner at Pitta Bishop, denied any connection between the firm's work for Thompson and for Glenwood.

"Our firm only does compliance for Bill Thompson," he said.

Regarding Glenwood, Del Giorno said: "We have not taken on the 91st Street transfer station, we have not been part of that effort."

Del Giorno added that he's chairman of New York City's League of Conservation Voters chapter, which supports the sanitation plan — and its East 91st Street component — contradicting suggestions of anti-MTS bias, he claimed.

"We do a lot of conflict of interest and a lot of board of governance rules," he said.

"The answer to your question is if we're hired to do campaign compliance, we're certainly not giving you a direction in how you're running your campaign."

Glenwood Management did not respond to requests for comment.

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