De Blasio secured mortgages for his Park Slope homes from bank tied to dubious deal with city

August 5, 2019

A mortgage for the mayor’s home at 384 11th Street came from Wall Street Morgage Bankers

The mortgages secured by Mayor Bill de Blasio for his two Park Slope homes came from a bank linked to a firm that received millions of dollars from the city in a controversial housing deal. The Daily News reported on Monday that the founder of the bank that gave the mortgages to de Blasio is Abraham Podolsky, the brother of Jay and Stuart Podolsky, whose firm sold 17 buildings to the city for $173 million earlier this year. Critics have questioned the deal with the Podolsky brothers, who are known for owning poorly maintained properties, and City Comptroller Scott Stringer called on City Hall to release the deal’s appraisals.

Abraham Podolsky is the founder of Wall Street Mortgage Bankers, which operates under the name Power Express Mortgage Bankers and provided the loans to de Blasio for his Brooklyn homes.

According to the Daily News, the mayor’s row house on 11th Street has a $625,000 mortgage from Wall Street Mortgage Bankers, a deal made in June 2014, six months after the mayor began his first term. His second property on the same street has a mortgage of $630,000 from the company.

Stringer is investigating the appraisals of the properties sold by the Podolsky brothers because independent appraisals estimated the value of the properties to be around $143 million. In April, Stringer issued a subpoena to make the de Blasio administration release the documents, questioning the inflated final price tag of $173 million.

Complicating matters, the Podolsky brothers were represented by Frank Carone, an attorney of the Brooklyn Democratic Party who has donated at least $21,500 in total to the mayor.

“The only thing that factored into this deal was the best interest of our homeless New Yorkers,” Freddi Goldstein, a spokesperson for the mayor, told the Daily News. “Nothing else played a role.”

The city plans on converting 468 cluster apartments in buildings in the Bronx and Brooklyn to permanently stabilized apartments. The apartments were part of a program created by the Giuliani administration that paid private landlords higher rents to house homeless families.

George Arzt, a spokesperson for Jay and Stuart Podolsky, told 6sqft that Abraham hasn’t done business with his family since the 1980s. “The facts are: Stuart and Jay Podolsky parted ways in business with their brother Abe in the 1980s,” Arzt said in an email. “They do not know, nor did he ever know anything about the mortgage the mayor may have received.”

[Via NY Daily News]


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