Friday, July 29, 2005

 

Oops!

Robin Hood and Air America�-�Editorials/Op-Ed�-�The Washington Times, America's Newspaper: "In late June, city officials designated the Gloria Wise Boys and Girls Club, a nonprofit organization that runs mentoring programs for children and day care for Alzheimer's patients, a 'non-responsible city contractor.' Investigators found 'significant inappropriate transactions and falsified documents that were submitted to various City agencies.' The city subsequently suspended the club's contracts, which run well into the millions.
It turns out, according to sources quoted anonymously by the Bronx News, that the mishandled money went to Air America. One source claims that $480,000 was wrongly transferred. The city investigation is concentrating on Charles Rosen, the club's president for 15 years, and Evan Cohen, the development director, who is a former chairman of Air America. Mr. Cohen resigned from Air America in May after the network's leasing plans in Chicago, San Francisco and elsewhere fell through.
No one has claimed that Messrs. Cohen or Rosen sought to profit personally from any transfers. The money was said to have been a 'loan' from the community center to Air America, which Air America would repay with interest at some point in the future. But why the public till should be tapped to rescue a foundering news outlet was a question no one seemed to consider. Maybe Air America officers thought spending public funds on their network was a truly compelling public interest. It isn't, of course, and if the allegations are true, they reveal a misuse of tax dollars to support a partisan organization.
Air America's parent corporation Piquant LLC issued an 'explanation' yesterday but did not deny the allegations. It instead tried to pin them on Air America's previous owners, on whose watch the transfer"

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