Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Sound Familiar?

Barry benefited from city contract obtained for ex-girlfriend

D.C. Council Member Marion Barry personally benefited from the contract he obtained for his former girlfriend and directed earmarks that "provided substantial financial benefits to some of his close friends and supports," according to a report by attorney Robert S. Bennett.

In the report, Bennett stated Barry violated "D.C. law, council rules and policies and procedures" and recommends his findings be referred to the U.S. Attorney for possible criminal charges.

Barry responded that he did nothing wrong because the council had no written procedures outlining whom a council member could give a contract to.

…"We conclude Mr. Barry breached the highest ethical standards expected of him," Bennett told the council. "We find his conduct not only appeared to be improper, but was improper. We find Mr. Barry breached the public trust and violated the conflict of interest laws of the District of Columbia."

...When council members got to question Bennett, Barry stated, "if there are no written procedures for personal service contracts, no written procedures for scope of work...no written procedures for how you evaluate a product, then one who engages in that cannot, cannot be held accountable for violating something that did not exist in the first place," Barry said…

Tim Craig
Washington Post
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