Corruption probe includes de Blasio horse carriage ban

- Federal and state investigators are reportedly looking into Mayor Bill de Blasio's controversial and failed horse carriage ban proposal and possible fundraising violations.

According to the Wall Street Journal, the offices of U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara and Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. are examining whether fundraising efforts circumvented state election laws and whether donors were promised or given official benefits.

Wendy Neu and Steven Nislick-- who run the anti-horse-carriage organization, NYCLASS-- reportedly gave more than $100,000 to the Campaign for One New York, a nonprofit that supported de Blasio. The pair also financed an independent campaign against former Democratic mayoral rival City Council Speaker Christine Quinn.

Neu and Nislick-- who are not charged with any crimes-- say the group was focused on fighting for animal rights and would answer any questions investigators may have if contacted, according to the Wall Street Journal.

De Blasio, who had pushed to ban horse carriages saying it was inhumane to have horses travel Manhattan's busy streets, failed to get enough support to carry out the ban despite a campaign pledge in 2013 to do so.

"Mayor de Blasio holds his administration to the highest standards of integrity. We will cooperate fully with the investigations," said spokeswoman Karen Hinton.

The mayor is not charged with any crimes or wrongdoing.

Federal and state investigators are simultaneously investigating alleged corruption at the NYPD and the lifting of city deed restrictions at a health care facility in Manhattan.

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