By Jon Cronin
In the wake of the Queens Library scandal involving former CEO and President Thomas Galante and his interim replacement Bridget Quinn-Carey, Council Woman Elizabeth Crowley (D-Glendale) introduced city legislation that would enforce not-for-profit city leaders to disclose income outside their city-held positions.
According to a press release from Crowley’s office the “bill would mandate all persons in leadership positions at charitable, city-funded, not-for-profit organizations, including public libraries, annually report sources of outside income to the City.”
At Friday’s hearing Crowley felt the mayor’s office did not think the legislation was necessary. The impression they gave her was that this law being an improvement on another 30 year-old law, which has never been followed, was “antiquated”. She said she and the nine other council members whose names are on the bill will return for another hearing after strengthening its language.
“There’s no agency making sure those important disclosures do happen,” she said, suggesting the city should develop a wing within their Department of Investigation.
Crowley believes that with all the money going to not-for-profits from the city there should be more transparency to make sure none of is going into a CEO’s pocket or that of their friends and family.
The bill includes not only a separate income but the involvement of in outside activities. The release stated, “the material terms of any transaction between such person and any institution, any partnership of which such person is a member, or any corporation in which such person holds 10 percent or more common stock.”
Joanne King, spokesperson for the Queens Library wrote in a statement, “Queens Library is committed to transparency and accountability and is committed to building trust among all stakeholders to help us fulfill our mission.”
Crowley stressed that under the proposed legislation, “If [not-for-profits] don’t adhere to the bill they’re not going to get funded.”
Reach Reporter Jon Cronin at (718) 357-7400 x125, firstname.lastname@example.org or @JonathanSCronin