The Nassau County Legislature voted Monday to require occupants of historic county-owned properties to reveal their political contributions, boosting oversight to county actual property offers.
The 19-0 vote added regulation to the method for awarding what quantities to be a plum perk for individuals who dwell or work in secluded, county-owned mansions situated largely on Nassau’s North Shore.
Majority Republican legislators sought new disclosure legal guidelines after analyzing Nassau County Govt Laura Curran’s marketing campaign filings by Jan. 11.
Republican lawmakers stated they have been upset that Karli Hagedorn, chairwoman of the Sands Level Protect Conservancy, had donated $20,000 to Curran’s marketing campaign on Jan. 11.
That was the identical day the county legislature authorized a particular use and occupancy allow for her and her husband, James Hagedorn, for the Mille Fleurs mansion in Sands Level at a lease of $9,000 a month.
County disclosure legal guidelines, handed in 2016, require the true property firm that manages Nassau’s historic properties — Smith & DeGroat of Mineola — to reveal its marketing campaign donations. However the requirement doesn’t apply to the allow holders themselves.
Presiding Officer Richard Nicolello (R-New Hyde Park) stated the invoice closes a “loophole” within the disclosure legal guidelines.
“The idea nonetheless is to be sure that every part the county is doing is totally above board and past reproach,” Nicolello stated.
Mike Fricchione, a spokesman for Curran, stated the county govt backed the invoice and was “happy” the legislature included her modification to exempt veterans and members of the navy who dwell in government-subsidized housing from the marketing campaign reporting requirement.
Republicans held a information convention Monday asking Curran to return the Hagedorn marketing campaign donation.
However in an interview with Newsday Monday, James Hagedorn criticized Republicans for trying to politicize the difficulty.
Hagedorn stated his spouse’s donation had nothing to do with the legislative vote, which additionally came about Jan. 11.
“There may be zero relationship between the hearings and any contributions. The contributions are critically separate,” he stated.
Hagedorn stated the timing of the contribution was coincidental, and that he tends “to present on the final day of the reporting interval basically.”
The contribution cutoff for the January 2021 periodic submitting calendar was Jan. 11, in line with the state board of elections.
Fricchione didn’t reply instantly when requested whether or not Curran would return the $20,000 donation from Karli Hagedorn.
“The county govt doesn’t play any function in deciding on allow holders and finds it unlucky that Republican Legislators are centered on taking part in politics as an alternative of getting our residents vaccinated and companies again to regular,” Fricchione stated.
The Hagedorns have stated they’ve been working to convey Mille Fleurs, as soon as owned by Florence Guggenheim, into the conservancy’s portfolio so it could possibly be opened to the general public.
“The one cause that Karli and I rented this and spent some cash, was to get it off the market,” so the conservancy might devise a marketing strategy to open it to the general public for occasions.
The couple, who dwell in Vermont, don’t plan to dwell at Mille Fleurs, James Hagedorn stated.
James Hagedorn is chief govt and president of Scott’s-Micracle Gro, the Maysville, Ohio, producer of garden fertilizer and backyard objects.
His father, Horace, based the Miracle-Gro Co. in Port Washington, which merged with Scotts in 1995.
The Hagedorns have contributed a complete of $200,000 to Curran’s marketing campaign since 2017, in line with state marketing campaign finance information examined by Newsday.
Additionally they contributed to former County Govt Edward Mangano, a Republican.
Hagedorn referred to as himself “a really unapologetic Republican.”
He stated his spouse supported Curran, a Democrat, in 2017, however he backed her GOP opponent, former State Sen. Jack Martins of Previous Westbury.
“If any person would have stated disclose your donations, we’d have fortunately achieved so,” Hagedorn stated. If Republicans “have been so involved about it, why did not they only Google it?”
He continued: “We have now been beneficiant to each events … You by no means know sort of when it’s going to come in useful.”