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October 18, 2005

BUILD's got the CLAP?

NoLandGrab hasn't been warm and fuzzy towards BUILD in the past two weeks, but we've tried to be fair. Mainly, we've let the principals at BUILD do the talking (or denying). Meanwhile, for the past month, Ratner and BUILD have done nothing but lie to the public and press.

The only person telling the truth around here is the one person who really needs the work, a resident of Brooklyn Women's Shelter in Brownsville. In Juan Gonzalez's column, she mentioned that BUILD pays well and that she worked for them before, during the election. At that time she reported to and picked up her pay at BUILD, but, to be fair (dang, here we go, being fair, when everyone else gets to lie), the worker was paid by a company called, ironically, Community Leadership for Accountable Politics (CLAP!).

Forest City Ratner denies having any knowledge of a group called CLAP. A Google search for CLAP turns up an Erik Enquist column from July, 2004 that identifies CLAP as a group "running candidates in Ft. Greene and Prospect Heights." The campaigns were managed by "local politico James Caldwell, the president of the pro-development group BUILD." Also, the lawyer listed on the NY State Department web site for CLAP is a name we heard before, Sharai Erima, Esq., the lawyer who erroneously scribbled in "$5 Million Forest City Ratner" on BUILD's IRS 1023 form.

Can Brooklynites fairly conclude that Ratner has paid for office space for their own astroturf organization and a group running candidates for public office?

Posted by lumi at October 18, 2005 08:02 AM