NYCLASS fined for campaign finance violations

An animal rights group that was a major contributor to Mayor Bill de Blasio in 2013 was slapped Thursday with nearly $40,000 in fines for campaign finance violations this year in races for the City Council.

The political arm of New Yorkers for Clean, Livable and Safe Streets — better known as NYCLASS — will have to pay $38,566 for failing to file six financial disclosure statements, the Campaign Finance Board announced.

NYCLASS, which has been trying for years to ban horse-drawn carriages from city streets, did not file the forms “timely and accurately for transactions totaling $237,284 between August 30 and September 11,” the board said.

The group’s leaders, Wendy Neu and Stephen Nislick, and their associates contributed more than $900,000 to de Blasio’s 2013 campaign and a nonprofit backing the mayor’s agenda.

This year, NYCLASS backed six candidates for the City Council, including incumbents Helen Rosenthal of Manhattan, Laurie Cumbo of Brooklyn and Paul Vallone of Queens, according to city records.

“NYCLASS Animal Protection agrees with the recommended fine and apologizes for the inadvertent error that led to it,” said spokesman Chris Coffey.

“This was not an attempt to hide our campaign spending.”


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