Is that Matthew 7:17–18 we smell?
CLW readers are aware that District of Columbia Attorney General Karl Racine was one of Michael Bloomberg’s original partners in Bloomberg’s Law Enforcement for Rent scheme. That plan entails bringing on board an activist attorney(s), funded by a Bloomberg group, as a “Special Assistant AG” to work on issues of concern to Bloomberg. As CLW noted yesterday , it turns out this attorney’s name also was sent to DC OAG by Bloomberg Philanthropies, to which the Bloomberg AG group reports back on a biweekly basis.
Public records show that after receiving this resumé and, apparently, some from Bloomberg’s NYU group, DC’s OAG also decided it didn’t really need to publicly advertise the Bloomberg-funded opening. After which, DC OAG brought on board the Bloomberg Philanthropies-referred, Bloomberg-group-hired attorney.
It appears that DC OAG went light on some other obligations. The DC OAG Bloomberg SAAG not only is not just any SAAG, but a Bloomberg Philanthropies-picked SAAG. This SAAG position also appears to have been filled illegally.
DC, being something of a ward of the federal government, is subject to governance requirements adopted by act of Congress. This includes OAG’s acceptance of gifts. Section 115 of the District of Columbia Appropriations Act, 2003, Pub. L.108-7, and DC’s regulations implementing that Act, require a series of certifications and other forms for any donation to be legal.
The Bloomberg “gifts” of which the public are presently aware include a “Special Assistant Attorney General”, public relations services, other outside lawyers, and legal services out of Bloomberg’s outfit housed at NYU.
Any gift to DC OAG requires an application form to the Office of Partnerships and Grant Services (OPGS), as required by Mayor’s Memorandum 2015-001, Section III, A (this application form should include certifications by both OAG and New York University School of Law’s State Energy and Environment Impact Center; certification by the Attorney General that NYU’s donation is consistent with Mayor’s Memorandum 2015-001 as required by Mayor’s Memorandum 2015-001, Section III, K; a pre-solicitation application from OAG to OPGS as required in Mayor’s Memorandum 2015-001, Section III, C; a written donation agreement, signed by representatives of OAG and NYU, including a statement of authority for OAG’s use of the donation, as required by Mayor’s Memorandum 2015-001, Section III, E; and OAG’s notification to OPGS that the NYU Fellow had begun work as required by Mayor’s Memorandum 2015-001, Section III, G.
The transparency group Energy Policy Advocates (EPA) requested copies of these required certifications and forms, under DC’s open records law. DC produced all that which it said it possesses, which grand stack of documentation rises all the way to the level of…the donor agreement (gift amount: “$163,615 to the Office of the Attorney General for the District of Columbia of the services of one attorney to the DCOAG to be used for the following purpose…”).
This wording suggests that $163,615 is the amount Bloomberg’s group is paying Kogel-Smucker to work on climate litigation for DC OAG. OAG produced no donor agreement reflecting the PR services, legal service, or other gifts.
Paragraph 6 of the donor agreement acknowledges that DC OAG is aware of “systems in place for the donation to be accepted by the government”. These systems appear to have broken down. Reming us at CLW that NY OAG recently told a court it prematurely terminated its SAAG relationships, which it turns out were entered into without the requisite ethics and other reviews and approvals.
As future posts will discuss, CLW has obtained other records suggesting these systems have broken down for more than just those Bloomberg-group gifts.