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Don Peebles Could Be In The Middle Of de Blasio's Fundraising Scandal


Peebles Corp CEO Don Peebles said he got a personal call from New York mayor Bill de Blasio with a request to give $20k toward his universal pre-K program.

The developer said it was hard “to tell the mayor no.”

The call from Hizzoner came in March 2014, according to DNAinfo.

There are Federal and state investigations ongoing into whether the organization where the money went, The Campaign For One New York, raised money illegally, and whether illicit back-scratching may have been involved in the solicitation for donations.

Peebles, who has indicated he may run against de Blasio for mayor, said a specific dollar amount was named on the call. He said while he supports universal pre-K, he had some wariness about the call from the sitting mayor.

Peebles Corp owns 346 Broadway, a building in which the city rents space. City and state law prohibit public officials from asking for funds from people or entities in the process of doing business with the city or ones that are likely to do so in the future.

That could be relevant here, because until at least February 2014, Peebles was working on finalizing a bid to develop a site owned by Long Island College Hospital in Brooklyn.

Peebles says he asked his staff to send a check on March 6. A call came “within minutes” of the call from the mayor from a top de Blasio staffer, Peebles told DNAinfo. That official, Ross Offinger, has since been subpoenaed in an ongoing investigation into the mayor’s fundraising activities. [DNA]