Merlin’s beard, freshman Councilman Dan Halloran is in the spotlight again!
In late December, the New York Post reported, Halloran “met with three plow workers from the Sanitation Department — and two Department of Transportation supervisors who were on loan.” They allegedly told him that snow clearance was poor as a payback for union umbrage suffered at the hands of the mayor. But the brave whistleblowers, Halloran says, “didn’t want to be identified because they were afraid of
Problem is, according to the Times, no one else is backing them up:
“But the more that investigators look into Mr. Halloran’s story, the more mystifying it becomes,” writes the Times. “[I]nvestigators had hoped that extensive publicity would bring out others with knowledge of the purported plot. That has not happened, according to the people briefed on the investigations, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the investigations are continuing. This leaves prosecutors with no proof that anything occurred.”
The Times notes that Halloran has had an unusually contentious first year in office, often over charges that are very personal. They cite:
– His infamous run in with traffic cop Daniel Chu, [http://blogs.villagevoice.com/runninscared/2010/06/dan_halloran.php] which ended in a “he said, he said” stand off between the two authority figures. The Times says Chu has shown an intention to sue the city over the matter
– An allegation against a ripe political enemy (public employee unions), from sources he won’t name, and which no one else seems to be backing up.
– And, most hilariously of all, how the Queens Councilman has turned “Whitestone” into “Whitewater.” Halloran was enraged apparently about being denied a building permit in 2008. When he took office, he went after the Department of buildings. Last month, he asked for a permit to add a second floor to his Whitehouse house. He was denied for zoning reasons, but it was odd he wanted to spend $60,000 on an addition, considering that “Wells Fargo [had begun] foreclosure proceedings on their home” and his wife had filed for Chapter 11 (because her credit debt was $116,521, including owing $14,777 to…Home Depot!)
Despite bankruptcy, the Times says, Ms. Halloran is seeking to keep her 2005 Jaguar. (Was that the car bearing “Tiw Tru” or “Tyr Tru” plates?) Also, the couple is seeking a divorce, a Halloran spokesman says.
Halloran wouldn’t speak to the Times for their article (something we can relate to), so it’s not sure how much heat he’s feeling about making charges about the snow work slow down no one else can back up. But his spokesman says Halloran “would not reveal the names of the sanitation workers who spoke to him because they had been seeking his advice as a lawyer at the time, and Mr. Halloran believed that their names were protected under attorney-client privilege.”
Hooey, says legal expert Stephen Gilles, who tells the Times that if Halloran “was approached as a public official — with the power to call attention to official misconduct, there is no attorney-client privilege.”
Hat tip: Roy Edroso
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on January 26, 2011