Since the heat is on the City Council's budget practices, specifically its use of slush funds and creating fake groups to collect money, Mayor Bloomberg released details about his own, uh, slush fund. Deputy Mayor Ed Skyler issued a memo noting reforms plus details of the Mayor's discretionary funds. Per the Daily Politics, it explained how "the mayor himself controls a pot of cash...for which Council members and borough presidents can apply during budget negotiations to direct to the nonprofit of their choice."
Last year, the Mayor handed out $4.5 million, with City Council member Simcha Felder getting $1.92 million. Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz received $900,000 for concert series in Brooklyn--the Post points out the Beep "has publicly praised Bloomberg as the greatest mayor in city history."
This mayoral slush fund is "in addition to the $360 million" the City Council has for council members' discretionary spending. The Citizens' Union's Richard Dadey told the Sun, “It was not a particularly significant part of the budget, but in light of the disclosure about discretionary items, it is appropriate for the mayor to come forward and disclose his relationship to the practice.”
The Post has a list of what nonprofits lawmakers were funding with this money. And Felder, who has been a steadfast supporter of the mayor, told the Times, "I go to the speaker [to help fund nonprofit groups], I go to the mayor, I go to anyone else that I think can help. Sometimes I get it, sometimes I don’t.”