From the NY Times:
On Monday afternoon, a City Hall political operative by the name of Maura Keaney was given a $143,000 job at the city’s Department of Education.
The Keaney appointment is a bracing moment, even for people accustomed to taking their politics without cream and sugar, and who have already seen Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg stashing his former campaign workers on the city payroll.
Hours before her job with the school system was announced, the Conflicts of Interest Board revealed that it had fined Ms. Keaney $2,500 for ethical wrongdoing in campaign activities in 2007.
The mayor could not have cared less: in Mr. Bloomberg’s telling, Ms. Keaney made an innocent mistake and brought it to the attention of the regulators. So move along folks, nothing to see here.
“When you screw up, you fess up to it and pay your penalty and get on with it,” Mr. Bloomberg said on Tuesday.
The mayor is taking good care of Ms. Keaney, and she has done quite well by him. But no one is breaking into a cold sweat telling the truth.
Ms. Keaney used to work for the City Council, and helped change the law so the mayor could have a third term. Then Mr. Bloomberg brought her onto his campaign team last year and paid her $4,250 a week, with a bonus of $150,000.
Her problems with the Conflicts of Interest Board arose from her work at the City Council, when she was the deputy chief of staff to the speaker, Christine C. Quinn. While she was in that job — helping to shape legislation important to labor unions — she was also raising campaign money from the unions for Ms. Quinn. It’s a common practice in politics. It happens to be against the law in New York City for people in a position to influence policy.