That’s the official reason given in the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration’s report for the Internal Revenue Service’s use of “inappropriate criteria” for evaluating applications for certain tax exemptions.
But instead of focusing on what’s in the report and then accepting it as the end-all-and-be-all, look at what’s not there. (more…)
Yesterday’s OpenCdA post provided initial information about the federal bribery investigation involving an alleged conspiracy between New York State Senator Malcolm Smith and several elected and political party officials in New York including New York City Councilman Dan Halloran.
Smith, a Democrat, and Halloran, a Republican, are accused of actions amounting to buying Smith onto the New York City mayoral ballot as a Republican candidate.
Today’s New York Times has an pretty good link analysis graphic entitled Untangling the Arrests in the New York Corruption Case. The graphic identifies the roles and dollar amounts associated with the six who have been arrested to date.
The companion news article in the Times headlined Lawmakers in New York Tied to Bribery Plot in Mayor Race provides a little more detail about the scheme and the investigation.
When talking about corruption by public officials, rabidista partisans like to be able to point out that a person accused is of the opposite political party. The rabidistas of both major national political parties gleefully try to persuade others that specific political party affiliation is a de facto indicator of and precursor to corruption.
As radio character Fibber McGee’s wife Molly used to say to him, “Tain’t so, McGee.”
Corrupt public officials use political party affiliation as a tool to achieve corrupt results. They will be whatever they need to be to achieve their desired results. They are political chameleons. That is being illustrated in a corruption scandal unfolding in the New York City mayoral race.
Read on. (more…)
If you believe Coeur d’Alene Mayor Sandi Bloem, Coeur d’Alene City Administrator Wendy Gabriel, Deputy Finance Director Vonnie Jenson [sic], and others cited in US Attorney Wendy Jo Olson’s Response to Objection to Impact Statements filed for the March 4, 2013, sentencing hearing of convicted former City employee Sheryl Carroll, the aforementioned Mayor, Administrator, and Deputy Finance Director were all victims themselves of Carroll’s larcenous cleverness.
Quoting character Al Borland, comedian Tim Allen’s reserved and always skeptical straight man in the 90′s television series Home Improvement, “I don’t think so, Tim.” (more…)
Today’s Los Angeles Times is reporting that the former mayor of Cudahy, California, will be headed off to federal prison “…for his part in taking $17,000 in bribes from a man who wanted to open a medical marijuana dispensary in the city in southeast Los Angeles County.”
According to Southern California Public Radio, Silva got greedy and accepted “… a $5,000 bribe from the owner of a medical marijuana clinic…” and “…a $50,000 bribe from a developer who received city-owned land at a discounted price. He also accepted other bribes in exchange for his approval on a commercial development.”
Naturally, this kind of corruption could never happen here in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho…
According to NOLA.com | The Times Picayune, former New Orleans, LA, mayor Ray Nagin has been indicted by a federal grand jury on 21 counts of corruption for allegedly soliciting and accepting bribes during his mayoral tenure.
Here is a copy of the 25-page indictment alleging bribery, corruption, cronyism, and political patronage. By reading both the online newspaper article and the indictment, readers will better understand the many deceptions that corrupt officials often adopt in an effort to make unlawful actions appear lawful.
Nagin was Mayor of New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina. He ran for office, in part, on a promise to rid New Orleans of corruption. As noted in the Washington Times online article reporting the indictment, the news media bought into Nagin’s deception, choosing to promote Nagin’s rock star image rather than investigate and report.
But none of this could ever happen in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho.
In March of this year, OpenCdA put up a post titled Of Course, It Could Never Happen Here… It briefly noted the conviction of a Cuyahoga County (Cleveland), Ohio, Commissioner named Jimmy Dimora on racketeering and 32 corruption charges.
Today, Cleveland.com, the online voice of The Cleveland Plain Dealer newspaper, is reporting that one of the two case agents, SA Christine Oliver, is being transferred out of Ohio. Although the story is an appropriate tribute to her, it also provides additional information into how long it takes to assemble solid public corruption cases. This one was characterized as the biggest public corruption case in Ohio history.
Hopefully she was transferred to the office of her choice! Dues paid!
Trenton Mayor Tony Mack
OpenCdA’s posts on July 19 and September 10 of this year discussed the FBI’s investigation and then the subsequent arrest of Trenton, NJ, Mayor Anthony Mack on charges of public corruption.
The initial investigation revealed that Mack allegedly took approximately $119,000 in bribes to ensure that a lucrative parking garage would be built. It turns out that the garage developer was working as a cooperating witness for the FBI.
In an online post headlined FBI agents working Trenton Mayor Tony Mack corruption case turn their attention to carpeting contracts dated December 6, 2012, NJ.com reports that the FBI has expanded its corruption investigation to include the unauthorized expenditure of public money by Mack for carpeting for some closed library branches that had been turned into “learning centers.” In layman’s terms, it sounds as if Mack was spreading public money around to buy political support. One of the carpet vendors felt he got shortchanged and decided to work with the FBI.
But this could never happen here in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho.
According to The Detroit News online, on November 20th Special Agents from the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s public corruption squad executed search warrants at the Detroit Public Library.
The Detroit News story by Christine MacDonald and Joel Kurth was headlined Feds probe alleged kickbacks, contracts at Detroit Public Library. They report the federal investigation involves alleged kickbacks, mismanagement, nepotism, and cost overruns by contractors. The Library Commission President, Jonathan Kinloch, was quoted saying, “It’s alleged folks had put in place contracts based on personal relationships for personal gain. You can’t have approval and oversight of contractors from the same individuals.”
In the Detroit Free Press online reporting of this raid, Mr. Kinloch said, “There may be an individual who awarded contracts for personal gain. And if that is the case, it is a total violation of the public trust.”
But this could never happen here in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho.
Public corruption investigations and prosecutions are interesting. They often reveal that the corrupt public officials were able to steal from their friends and neighbors so easily because those same friends and neighbors thought the crooks were pillars of the community and above reproach.
Here is the Internal Revenue Service’s summary of the case against Prince George’s County, Maryland, developer Karl Granzow, Jr. Reading the summary is about as interesting as watching cement dry. Just another crooked Maryland developer, right?
Not quite. Here’s a little more about Karl Granzow, Jr. (more…)