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Albany Reform

Auto Dealers, Parking Garages and, Well, Lots of Others Fund Shelly

In case you missed it last week, New York State Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver is raising bucket-loads of campaign cash -- lots more than his two opponents, Paul Newell and Luke Henry. Groups that opposed congestion pricing are, no surprise, among some of the most enthusiastic contributors. The Times reported:

Like Mr. Paterson and Mr. Skelos, Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver now Albany's longest-serving leader drew heavily from established interest groups, including trial lawyers, the insurance industry, banking interests and an array of labor unions. Mr. Silver also received money from some groups that opposed Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg's plan to charge a fee for cars entering parts of Manhattan, including limousine services and rental car companies. Though Mr. Silver said he personally supported the idea, he did not allow it to come up for a vote in the Assembly.

You can add to that partial list car dealers, service stations, parking garages, and private bus companies, which opposed the idea of pricing until an exception was brokered for them late in the game. All told, Silver collected $308,044 from contributors in the latest six-month fundraising period, outpacing challengers Newell and Henry by a (predictably) wide margin.

Here's a rundown of major donations to his campaign from groups who sided against pricing or influenced the proposed legislation.

Note that most of the contributions were given before the Assembly's Democratic conference scuttled the pricing bill in a closed-door session. (Groups are located within the state of New York unless otherwise noted.)

    • GREATER NY AUTO DEALERS ASSOC.: $3800, March 19
    • BLACK CAR PAC: $2500, March 19
    • UNITED BUS CORPORATION: $2500, March 14
    • HUNTINGTON COACH, LLC: $2500, March 14
    • KENSINGTON ENTERPRISES LLC (parking garage): $2000, March 19
    • VANGUARD CAR RENTAL USA INC. (Tulsa, OK): $1500, May 16
    • SYLVAN FORESTER GARAGE, LLC: $1000, March 19
    • CHAMPION PARKING 36 LLC: $1000, March 19
    • ENTERPRISE RENT A CAR NY PAC: $1000, March 19

Source: New York State Board of Elections

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