As if there were not already enough groups with enough money lobbying Albany over educational priorities, Politico New York reports that, “Education Tax Credit Supporters Create New Super PAC”.
“Catholics for Independent Action” was registered with the state Board of Elections in March and raised $90,000 in the subsequent three months. It recently reported to the board’s independent expenditure portal two $10,000 payments to lobby firm Francis J. Sanzillo & Associates for consulting.
All of the money it has raised has come from two donors, both of whom work in the financial sector. Anthony J. de Nicola, a general partner at investment firm Welsh, Carson, Anderson & Stowe, gave $65,000, and Frederic V. Salerno, the chief executive officer of acquisition firm Gabelli Entertainment & Telecommunications, gave $25,000.
The group’s treasurer is Thomas W. Carroll, the president of the Coalition for Opportunity in Education. That group was the state’s biggest spender on lobbying in the first half of 2015, pumping $5.01 million into an effort to create a system of tax credits available to donors to private school scholarships and public schools. While that push gained prominent supporters such as Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Cardinal Timothy Dolan, opponents, including teachers unions, civil liberties groups, and several key Assembly Democrats, blocked it.
“Catholics for Independent Action,” huh? $20,000 for consulting fees out of the gate for Albany lobbying. More of the same and worthy of opposition even for a dad of Catholic school kids.