New York City Mayor Eric Adams has received the go-ahead to hire his brother as a senior security adviser, a controversial appointment that has drawn harsh criticism as well as accusations of nepotism, casting a dark cloud over the young administration of a man who many see as a savior for the crime-ridden metropolis.
On Thursday, the New York City Conflicts of Interest Board (COIB) ruled that Bernard Adams could be hired as a senior advisor to the mayor albeit not at the $200,000 + salary that he would have received, instead, he will only receive annual compensation in the amount of one dollar.
Mayor Adams initially sought to hire his younger sibling as a deputy police commissioner at a salary of $240,000 per year but after backlash, he was bumped down to the lesser position of mayoral security adviser, a job paying $210,000.
According to a Reuters report, “The panel said that while a city charter prohibits public servants from seeking advantages for members of their family, it would grant Adams a waiver to hire his brother because the job of senior security adviser would be essentially unpaid and carry no authority within the New York City Police Department.”
“The ethics board granted a similar waiver to Adams’ predecessor, Bill de Blasio, who appointed his wife to head the board of directors for a not-for-profit philanthropic organization,” the outlet reported.
“According to the COIB ruling, his duties will not involve the supervision of public servants or any command authority over NYPD personnel,” the New York Post reported.
Earlier this month, Hizzoner defended the hiring during an interview with CNN’s Jake Tapper, saying that it was necessary due to the phantom menace of white supremacy, a familiar fallback for Democrats seeking to dodge serious questions.
Adams cites ‘serious problem with white supremacy’ in NYC to justify hiring brother for personal security https://t.co/K04BcUeqgE
— American Wire News (@americanwire_) January 10, 2022
When the subject came up, Adams responded to Tapper, “Let me be clear on this: My brother is qualified for the position. Number one, he will be in charge of my security, which is extremely important to me at a time when we see an increase in white supremacy and hate crimes.”
“I have to take my security in a very serious way,” he said. “But, at the same time, I need that right balance. I don’t want the people of this city to believe that their mayor is not approachable and he’s not willing to engage with them on the level that I want to represent you.”
Twitter users reacted to the news.
New York City's Mayor Eric Adams was going to hire his own brother for an annual salary of $210,000.
Now the Conflict of Interest Board reduced that to a somewhat more modest $1 a year.
But don't be surprised if the job comes with a $210,000 expense account.
— Victor Laszlo (@Impolitics) January 28, 2022
Everyone knows the money is on the kick backs and pay to play schemes just ask deBlasio…
— Subway Stories (@MyDailyTrip_NYC) January 27, 2022
He will just pay him under the table. He won’t even have to pay income taxes this way.
— LibertyOrDeath (@Liberty23910772) January 27, 2022
I'm sure they'll find the funds to embezzle for his salary somewhere https://t.co/UfDjdumkFW
— Nneoma Adaku (@theemdphd) January 27, 2022
Adams who officially took office when he was sworn in right after the ball dropped in Times Square to usher in the new year was largely elected on his vow to tackle Gotham’s soaring crime rate, a legacy of his predecessor Bill de Blasio as well as a monumental task considering the rapid deterioration of the Big Apple, especially in the aftermath of the death of George Floyd which sparked looting and violence at a time when the police were scapegoated by the Democrat.
Early reviews of his performance have been mixed and he hasn’t helped himself by seemingly practicing such nepotism, not exactly good optics for the incoming mayor.
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