Here’s a helpful tip for any New York City government employees who have ever worked with the NFL: don’t accept those free Super Bowl tickets.
Gothamist brings us the story of midtown firefighter John Curatolo, who just caught the business from the city’s Conflicts of Interest Board. Curatolo admitted to developing a “friendly relationship” with NFL VP Anna Isaacson, whom he worked with last year while coordinating street closures for a Super Bowl-related event. That relationship led to him getting what he probably thought was a pretty sweet hookup:
Last February 1st, the day before the Super Bowl in New Jersey, Isaacson told Curatolo that she had last-minute tickets to the game, and needed to give them to someone she could “trust to not sell them or allow others to sell them.” Instead, she said, Curatolo could give the tickets away to friends and family.
Agreeing to Isaacson’s terms, Curatolo gave away at least 21 tickets to other firefighters and attended the Super Bowl himself, violating the “Valuable Gift Rule” under which City employees are barred from accepting gifts valued over $50 from anyone who does business with the City.
Now Curatolo has to pay a $4,000 fine, and six of his colleagues have to pay $500 fines for accepting free tickets from a subordinate. Hopefully they at least had a good time at the Super Bowl.