The rent might be too damn high for many New Yorkers but not for Gov. Andrew Cuomo. Instead, he’s been able to benefit from the so-called “LLC Loophole” to get rent-free office space in Midtown. SL Green, one of the largest landlords in New York, gave Cuomo’s campaign office space (valued at approximately $2,640 per month) as a contribution. And to avoid violating contribution limits, SL Green cycled through various LLCs they own to make the contributions.
Cuomo announced legislation to close the LLC loophole last year. However, he quickly gave up the effort despite reform advocates and Senate Democrats urging him to keep up the fight.
SL Green, which spent over $300,000 lobbying Albany in 2016, needed the support of the MTA for its newest project: a massive new skyscraper across the street from Grand Central. SL Green founder Stephen Green (brother of former Public Advocate Mark Green) is also a Governor of the Real Estate Board of NY (REBNY), the main lobbying group for landlords. They’ve accumulated numerous victories over the last several years thanks to a close relationship with Gov. Cuomo.