TODAY'S PAPER
36° Good Evening
36° Good Evening
Long IslandPoliticsSpin Cycle

Steve Bellone helps Tara Scully retire debt from Suffolk Surrogate's campaign

The Suffolk County executive made a $10,000 donation to reduce Scully's $58,000 campaign debt.

Tara Scully, shown at her Port Jefferson office

Tara Scully, shown at her Port Jefferson office on Sept. 5, split a donation from Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone with her father, according to her latest filing. Photo Credit: James Escher

Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone, who originally endorsed Republican Tara Scully for county Surrogate's Court judge but later went mum during the Democratic primary, made a $10,000 post-election donation to ease her $58,000 campaign debt.

The Democrat’s Nov. 26 donation from his $1.65 million campaign fund is far short of the $15,000 that Scully loaned herself and the $30,000 her father Peter Scully, Bellone’s sewer czar, loaned the unsuccessful campaign.

Scully’s latest filing shows she and her father split Bellone’s donation, so she is now $10,000 in the hole and her father, $25,000.

Before Election Day, Bellone gave last-minute donations totaling $191,000 to the New York State Democratic Committee.

Bellone's 27-day post-election campaign finance report shows he also gave $32,500 to Electric Symphony Media to help Democrat Jay Schneiderman, who ran unsuccessfully for Suffolk County comptroller.

Bellone in July backed Scully in the name of judicial reform.

Others have suggested Bellone sought to undercut Suffolk Democratic Chairman Richard Schaffer because of Schaffer's nine-judge cross-endorsement deal. As part of the agreement, Schaffer backed District Court Judge Marian Tinari, wife of Suffolk Conservative Chairman Frank Tinari, for Surrogate's Court.

Bellone retreated when Tinari dropped out of the Surrogate's Court race in favor of Democratic Family Court Supervising Judge Theresa Whelan, who easily beat Scully in the primary and the November election with three ballot lines.

Scully and her father did not return calls for comment.

Schaffer, meanwhile, said he ran into Scully’s father and told him he would contribute $500 of his own money to help reduce their debt.

“I’m surprised that Bellone didn’t give the maximum contribution, given the fact he created this mess for the Scully's,” said Schaffer, referring to the $48,349 legal limit for a countywide race under state law.

“I feel bad for Peter Scully; he’s a stand-up guy who I’ve known personally and professionally. I want to help him get money back, unlike his boss,” said Schaffer.

Jason Elan, Bellone’s spokesman, said the bulk of Bellone’s contributions went to help Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo and local Democratic State Senate candidates.

“County Executive Bellone was proud to dedicate significant resources to elect common-sense Democrats like Monica Martinez and others to the State Senate,” Elan said.

Comments

We're revamping our Comments section. Learn more and share your input.

Latest Long Island News