NEW YORK (WABC) -- Eight taxpayers have asked for a state court inquiry into the use of so-called slush funds by the New York City Council.
The petitioners say officials undermined public confidence in government by creating fictitious groups and having public money allocated for them in the city budget.
Manhattan court papers say the practice is illegal and has cast a shadow over the City Council. They want to know when it started, who started it, who participated and who knew about it, and where the money went.
City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, who's considered a likely mayoral candidate next year, has said the council appropriated some $17.4 million since 2001 to groups that did not exist.
But wait, there's more!
...activist attorney Norman Siegel, a candidate for public advocate, filed a motion in Manhattan Supreme Court under a provision dating back to the Boss Tweed era of the 1870s requesting a judicial hearing in the phantom accounts.
"New Yorkers need a public airing of the facts surrounding this practice," Siegel said in court papers.
"When did it start? Who started it? Who participated in the practice? Who knew about the practice? Who made up the fictitious names?"
How appropriate that a Boss Tweed-era provision may blow the lid off the entire thing!