Information recently aired from an FBI wiretap raises serious ethical, if not legal, questions about the leadership of City Council President Martin Sweeney.
The tapes recorded conversations of Michael Forlani, a crooked contractor who is pleading guilty to bribing public officials, revealing plans to have Sweeney negotiate City Council support for an unspecified business activity in exchange for $20,000 in donations to a campaign fund controlled by the council president. Although the other party in the conversation said there is nothing illegal about making campaign donations, no donations to the fund from either of the men were recorded that year and the tape mentions the need to use "intermediaries."
"Money cures a lot of evils," they say.
Forlani also did home repairs at Sweeney's house many years prior that the council president has never been able to prove were undertaken legally and ethically.
In light of these facts, we ask that City Council undertake an independent ethics investigation of the situation and that Sweeney be barred from voting on public contracts until he is cleared of any wrongdoing by a body representing the interests of the public.
After all this region has been through, we need to protect the integrity of our public institutions.
More information here: http://www.cleveland.com/metro/index.ssf/2013/01/cleveland_city_council_preside_1.html