In fairness, how else is a man of little means like Mike Bloomberg supposed to foot the bill for servers?

John Ekdahl did all the work here so go read his post laying out the evidence. There’s no question, it seems, that Mayors Against Illegal Guns is being run off of New York City government servers. The question is why. Why does a 501(c)(4) whose most prominent member is one of the world’s richest people need to take a free ride on the taxpayer dime to keep its website running? One obvious possibility is that it’s not free-riding; someone, be it Bloomy or the group itself, is reimbursing the city for its server costs. That’s great, but in that case, why not just contract with a private entity for hosting? Is MAIG getting some sort of break on the cost by parking itself at NYC instead of elsewhere? If so, has the City Council authorized that or did Bloomberg decide unilaterally that it’d be okay because he said so?

Even if the city’s being reimbursed at full cost, MAIG’s getting an opportunity for city-provided hosting that other advocacy groups (particularly pro-gun groups) would surely never have. Which is not to suggest that this is some inescapable problem for Bloomy: The Council will, I’m sure, happily appropriate whatever money’s needed as a grant in order to cover the group’s server costs and maybe pay for the next valediction for Tamerlan Tsarnaev as a victim of gun violence. But I’m curious to know if Bloomberg even tried to do this through proper channels or if he just told his group to go ahead and set up shop there and not worry about it. We’ll see.