When a protest erupted over Mayor Eric Adams’ decision to hire his brother to manage his security details, the mayor sought official guidance from the New York City Board of Conflicts of Interest. and vowed to abide by his decision.
On Thursday, the board made its ruling public: Bernard, Eric Adams’ brother, could in fact work for New York City, albeit with a greatly reduced role and no compensation. compensate.
After discussions between the mayor’s office and the board, new terms of employment were agreed: Instead of earning $210,000 a year, he would earn $1; instead of serving as the “executive director of mayor security” within the confines of the New York Police Department, he will instead act as a “senior mayor security adviser” in the New York Police Department. mayor’s office.
No city employees were allowed to report to him. Nor can he have any “command” at the Police Department, according to resolution January 26released on Thursday morning via a Freedom of Information request.
Bernard Adams agreed to those conditions, according to a spokesman for the mayor. Instead of a salary, he will continue to receive a city pension of about $64,000 from the 20 years he spent as a New York City police officer before retiring in 2006 as a sergeant.
Spokesman Maxwell Young said: “Bernard Adams is uniquely qualified for this job, and to avoid a conflict of interest he has offered to work for a nominal salary of $1. “We made this proposal to the Department of Conflict of Interest and they agreed, and we are grateful to Bernard for his willingness to serve the city without pay.”
The board said Mr Adams’ new position still requires a board waiver as it gives holders “power and prestige”.
The conflicting council’s decision resulted in a public rebuke of the new mayor, who decided to put my brother in charge of his security details voice of alarm among government ethicists.
“The COIB has just passed a major test of its authority and anti-dictatorship laws still exist,” said John Kaehny, chief executive officer of Reinvent Albany, a good government group. “Hopefully Mayor Adams starts to appreciate how vast his power is and starts to lead by example instead of challenging basic anti-corruption norms.”
Initially, Mayor Adams envisioned his brother – who was most recently employed as a parking manager at a Virginia university – overseeing not only his own security but also high-ranking officials. other of the city.
After The New York Post said he plans to make his brother a deputy police commissioner, with an expected salary of around $240,000 a year, Mr. Adams said there is no one he is willing to trust for physical safety. his own than his brother.
The Adams administration eventually changed course, saying that Bernard Adams would instead serve in a lesser role – overseeing only the mayor’s security, no one else – and with a lower salary of 210,000. dollars.
The mayor’s police details will not be reported to Bernard Adams, as was planned. Instead, the mayor’s brother will advise him on mayor security and community engagement issues, and the Police Department will monitor the mayor’s details.
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“It’s a face-saver,” said Richard Briffault, a professor at Columbia Law School and former chair of the Council of Conflicts of Interest. “He was allowed to make the appointment, but he was not compensated and he had no role in overseeing anyone else.”
Although Mr. Adams became a city employee on December 30, he has yet to receive a salary, according to City Hall officials. Mr. Young also does not receive any additional compensation from any public or private organization other than the pension he earns while working for the Police Department and public health care benefits. serve, according to Mr. Young.
The Conflict of Interest Board did not release the waiver request filed by Brendan McGuire, Adams’ chief counsel, or any other written correspondence with the mayor’s office, citing the company’s terms of confidentiality. city law. The mayor’s office was allowed to make a waiver request but did not do so immediately.
Mr. Adams is not the first mayor to seek guidance from the conflict board when looking to hire a relative.
Shortly after taking office in 2014, Mayor Bill de Blasio was dismissed by the leadership appointing his wife, Chirlane McCray, as unpaid chair of a nonprofit affiliated with the city government, the Foundation. Mayor to Move Up New York City.
The foundation was established in 1994 by Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani as a vehicle for private organizations to financially support city programs and was reorganized under Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg. But it is performance is when fundraising stalled under Mrs. McCray.
So does Mr. Bloomberg, allowed to hire relatives to city services.
In 2002, the board of directors allowed his daughter, Emma Bloomberg, to resign as a research and administrative assistant in the mayor’s office without salary or benefits. Mr. Bloomberg has also asked permission from his sister, Marjorie TVn, to serve as an unpaid commissioner of the United Nations, the Consular Corps and the Protocol, now known as the Mayor’s Office for International Affairs. Her role is to act as a liaison between the city and the diplomatic community, and as the host and coordinator of ceremonial events.
William K. Rashbaum contributed reporting.
https://www.nytimes.com/2022/01/27/nyregion/eric-adams-brother-bernard.html Eric Adams can hire his brother, but for a salary of $1, not $210,000