Dante, Chiara de Blasio get internships with de Blasio administration

Mayor-elect Bill de Blasio hugs his daughter Chiara Mayor-elect Bill de Blasio hugs his daughter Chiara and son Dante during a celebration of his victory in the New York City mayoral race on Nov. 5, 2013. Photo Credit: Charles Eckert

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Mayor Bill de Blasio's children have joined the family business.

College student Chiara, 19, and Brooklyn Tech senior Dante, 16, have begun monthlong, unpaid internships in city government, first lady Chirlane McCray announced Thursday in a blog post. McCray works for City Hall as the unpaid chair of the Mayor's Fund to Advance New York City.

Chiara is interning with the Mayor's Office to Combat Domestic Violence, and Dante is working at City Hall for Dominic Williams, chief of staff to First Deputy Mayor Anthony Shorris. Dante was seen arriving at City Hall earlier in the week in a dress shirt alongside his father.

The internships were cleared though the city's Conflicts of Interest Board, as was an internship for former Mayor Michael Bloomberg's daughter in 2002.

A letter dated Tuesday from the board's chair, Richard Briffault, said a waiver was granted because Chiara and Dante will receive no financial benefit, their internships come at no cost to the city and they are qualified based on past public service experience and work on de Blasio's mayoral campaign.

The mayor's office informed the board that "neither would have policymaking authority," Briffault added.

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Chiara, working as part of the office's outreach team, "is excited to begin helping others, especially young women, reclaim their lives," McCray said. Dante's responsibilities will include "typical intern stuff" such as helping on research projects and organizing files, she said.

The mayor's office has about 150 interns, and the NYPD checks the records of each before their hire, officials said.

"Both internships are fantastic opportunities for Chiara and Dante to give back and grow through service," McCray said.

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Chiara is one of five interns with the Office to Combat Domestic Violence, City Hall officials said. Williams, who has known Dante for years, asked Dante if he would like to intern for him and the matter was referred to the personnel department, officials said.

Officials said both teenagers are qualified for their posts, and neither bumped another candidate from consideration.

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