As part of a settlement of a criminal investigation against questionable fund-raising where there were allegations that government contracts were traded for political contributions, Suffolk County Chief Executive Steve Levy resigned and turned over his more-than-$4 million campaign fund to the Suffolk County District Attorney's office. "Some Levy donors asked for their money back, but not all of his campaign cash has been claimed." The rest goes back to taxpayers, then, right? Not according to DA Thomas Spota, who has been using the proceeds as his own personal slush fund. It's not clear what legislative or constitutional authority permits that sort of spending. It may exist, but I couldn't find it: County Law §700(2) implies that the money is to be given to the county treasurer, and not kept within the DA's office to distribute. It's especially questionable if the DA is personally benefiting from a discretionary decision to settle the case given that there are those who believe that Levy escaped serious consequences. A left-wing blog gloats that the disgraced anti-immigration politician is now indirectly funding an immigration rights group, but doesn't raise questions why Spota is allowed to promote his own political career by giving government money to his political allies—isn't that pretty close to what Levy just got prosecuted for? I have an inquiry in to the Suffolk County's office asking for an explanation, and will update if they respond.
Suffolk County DA slush fund?
- Two podcasts
- "A Facebook Deal That Needs Unfriending"
- The cy pres morass and In re BankAmerica Corp. Securities Litigation
- Marek v. Lane & Dry Max Pampers in today's NY Times
- Speaking at 2013 ABA Class Action National Institute
- CCAF Sixth Circuit victory in Pampers Dry Max
- Cy pres and Stanford Law's Center on Internet and Society
- Cy pres in SCOTUS? Facebook Beacon settlement certiorari petition
- Opening brief in In re EasySaver Rewards Litigation
- CCAF objection in Fraley v. Facebook sponsored stories class action settlement
- Pigford makes it into the New York Times
- University of South Carolina Law School cy pres
- Standard Fire v. Knowles
- No en banc in Lane v. Facebook
- Baby Products press coverage
Center for Legal Policy at the