According to a recent Newsday article, Forest City Ratner, the firm picked last month by Ed Mangano to renovate the Coliseum and some of the surrounding area is represented by Park Strategies a lobbying firm run by former senator Alfonse D'Amato.
It has long been talked about and is even mentioned in the bottom of the Newsday piece that the death blow for the Lighthouse Project was when Charles Wang refused to hired D'Amatos brother Armand into the Lighthouse Development Group because of his suspect past.
I find it amazing that the guy hasn't been involved in politics in how long? But he still has so much influence over what occurs in the area. Further on that, it is a damn shame that he still needed to get his pocket lined in order for something to happen at the property. In the article a spokesperson for the firm said they didn't represent Ratner during the process and only set up the initial meetings between him and the county legislature after he won the competition. That maybe so, but I find it hard to believe that D'Amato isn't getting something out of this, it isn't the way he operates.