Rep. Crowley Gets $10M for Group That Pays His Brother

Michael Gartland of the New York Post is applying more scrutiny to Rep. Joe Crowley (D-NY), the leader of the corrupt Queens, New York political machine. This time, Crowley is enriching his brother (and himself?) by successfully seeking $10 million in federal funding for a co-op for Bronx merchants. From the story:

The federal infrastructure money, which Crowley (D-Queens) and Rep. José Serrano (D-Bronx) led the effort to secure, came just months after Crowley’s brother, Sean, lobbied the House and the US Department of Trans­portation on behalf of the Hunts Point Terminal Produce Cooperative, records show.

The merchant co-op, which was awarded the federal funding in August 2013, has shelled out at least $827,000 to the lobbying firm Davidoff, Hutcher and Citron since 2009, federal and state records show.

Its unclear what purpose is served by a near-bankrupt federal government subsidizing particular businesses, but the arrangement serves the Crowleys just fine. Also from the article:

“Everything about this reeks of a conflict of interest,” said Ken Boehm, chairman of the National Legal and Policy Center. “The congressman was not elected to help his brother’s lobbying firm — he was elected to represent his constituents.”

Gartland has previously reported that Crowley’s campaign committee rents space outside his Congressional district in a building owned by his brother’s company, and that his campaign treasurer’s teenage son has received more than $10,000, even though the kid was away at school for part of the time. We look forward to Gartland’s next dispatch.

According to Tom Anderson, director of NLPC’s Government Accountability Project, “It has been our experience that when nickel-and-dime scams by longtime incumbents come to light, it is usually the tip of the iceberg of a larger pattern of corruption.”