Robbins Explains

I was kind of waiting for the Voice’s Tom Robbins to weigh in with a definitive explanation what Central Labor Council chief Brian McLaughlin is actually accused of. He does that and throws in a mafia-ties bonus in this must-read online dispatch.

Here’s his explanation of why McLaughlin would have been part of the alleged scheme:

Several of the contractors were involved in the city’s streetlight program, where McLaughlin had enormous clout as a result of his role as a top official of Local 3 of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers. While most of his official union business centered on his Central Labor Council role, McLaughlin maintained control over a unit of the electrical workers’ union whose members worked for the streetlighting contractors, sources said. By agreeing to reduce labor costs for favored contractors, McLaughlin was able to help steer awards to his pals, the sources said.

Robbins, whose judgement on this kind of thing is hard to match, writes as though the case against McLaughlin is pretty well nailed down.

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