Andrew Stein, Ex-City Council President, Spends Community Service Reading, Chatting

Andrew Stein, the former City Council president in NYC under Mayor Ed Koch, was sentenced to 500 hours of community service for tax evasion stemming from a Kenneth Starr-assisted Ponzi scheme, but he's been getting off easy. The Daily News reports that Stein, instead of picking up trash or scrubbing graffiti and bathrooms like the hoi polo, "spends most of his volunteer time reading books and chatting on the phone." Stein said he'd help the elderly, but an employee of the East Harlem old folks home where he's supposed to be working insists, "He's not doing anything."

The News went to go spy on Stein for two days. For nearly four hours on one afternoon, Stein read the 768-page book The Storm of War, a history of World War II, on a yellow sofa in the back of a dining room as residents of the home ate and staffers cleaned up after them.

"Every day, he does nothing," one resident of the home said.

On another afternoon, Stein "filled a few water glasses." When his work ethic was challenged, he told the News, "That's bullshit," and said he does what he's supposed to. "He basically gives out the drinks," one employee said.

He seems to be getting off quite easy considering he was charged with lying to the IRS, money laundering and all kinds of fraud. Perhaps the Manhattan courts could also require a book report on that WWII tome.


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