Illustration: Jim Cooke, Photo: Stephan Guarch, Shutterstock
In 2006, then-New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg issued an executive order establishing the Office of Special Enforcement, a citywide agency responsible for enforcing quality of life regulations—a nebulous, ideologically charged concept that refers to anything from music venues with too many noise complaints to nightclubs that facilitate prostitution to decrepit structures that pose a fire hazard.
That office expanded the work of a 40-year-old agency, the Office of Midtown Enforcement, that was essential in making Midtown and Times Square the shiny commercial hubs they are today, and created the paradigm for how city agencies address issues and combat adverse conditions...that threaten public safety, community livability and property values and can lead to serious crime, Bloomberg s order read.
When Bill de Blasio took office in 2014, he doubled down, and paid Palantir $907,413 for 24 Gotham server cores and licenses for the Department of Finance.
Later that same year, the City paid $20,000 to provide 10 inspectors from the Office of Special Enforcement OSE with Palantir s mobile technology, connecting them to everything the city knows about every place within it.
Co-founded in 2004 by Peter Thiel and Alex Karp, Palantir s inner workings remain shrouded in secrecy.