Rangel Pays $23,000 Fine for Illegal Use of Apartment


Democratic New York congressman Charlie Rangel agreed to pay a $23,000 fine for using a rent-controlled apartment as a campaign office, according to the Hill:

The FEC had said that Rangel accepted an illegal campaign contribution by leasing the apartment from its owner at below-market rates, paying $630 per month in rent while other similar units in the building rented for more than $1,700 per month.

The unit was in the same building in which Rangel lived, and should not have been available for use as a political office under New York City laws that require rent-stabilized apartments to be used as a primary residence. …

The FEC also admonished Fourth Lenox Terrace Associates, the owners of Rangel’s building, for making “excessive in-kind contributions” to Rangel’s political operations by leasing the apartment at a discount.

The fine was the latest blow for Rangel, who lost his chairmanship of the House Ways and Means Committee after an Ethics Committee investigation found him guilty of 11 violations in 2010. The Ethics Committee admonished Rangel for improperly soliciting donations and failing to pay taxes on a rental villa in the Dominican Republic. Rangel also neglected to report hundreds of thousands of dollars on House financial disclosure forms.