DAs, Feds Probe Work Slowdown During Blizzard

By Ben Fractenberg on January 4, 2011 4:10pm | Updated on January 4, 2011 8:49pm

A snow plow stands parked outside of City Hall after the blizzard of 2010.
A snow plow stands parked outside of City Hall after the blizzard of 2010.
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DNAinfo/Jill Colvin

By Ben Fractenberg

DNAinfo Reporter/Producer

MANHATTAN —  The Brooklyn and Queens District Attorney’s offices are looking into allegations that city sanitation workers organized a work slowdown during the holiday blizzard.

"This office is reviewing information provided to it by City Councilman Dan Halloran, among others, with respect to last week’s snowstorm and the City’s response thereto," said the Queens DA's office in a statement. "In addition, we have been in contact with the City’s Department of Investigations."

They said they had not yet reached a decision on whether a formal investigation was warranted.

Federal prosecutors are also looking into the allegations, according to several reports.

The Brooklyn DA's office is looking into several isolated incidents of a slowdown by transportation workers, but nothing agency-wide, according to a spokesperson from their office.

If the claims turn out to be true, federal prosecutors would reportedly then look into whether sanitation and transportation workers violated wire or mail fraud laws by illegally receiving overtime pay, the Daily News reported.

The city is also reportedly investigating whether the alleged slowdown was in retaliation for budget cuts and demotions within the sanitation department.

Sanitation Commissioner John Doherty said he found no evidence of wrongdoing in the department.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg also denied rumors about the slowdown.

"I don't think it took place," Bloomberg said during a press conference last Thursday. "It would be an outrage if it took place."

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