Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Pay a Charity to Play in Chicago?

by Gary Snyder

Fine print of financing agreements negotiated during Mayor Richard Daley’s tenure for projects in special taxing districts required grant recipients to donate to particular charities, including After School Matters, which was founded and chaired by Maggie Daley, the Mayor's wife.

Sixteen out of 27 included contributions to After School Matters or an affiliate, accounting for about a quarter of $3.7-million in donations and making it by far the biggest charity recipient. This represents more than $915,000 from companies subsidized by much-criticized special taxing districts.

Since 1995, the city has made payments to After School Matters of more than $54 million, according to the city’s web site. In its recent article the Chicago Tribune noted that just days before Rahm Emanuel took over the Mayor's office, the city awarded After School Matters a one-year, nearly $6.5 million contract to oversee summer-jobs and after-school programs.

The program also has been the recipient of millions in funding from Chicago Public Schools and state government. Just days after Daley leaving office, Raymond Orozco, who was Richard Daley’s chief of staff at the end of his 22-year tenure, was named CEO of After School Matters. Katherine LaMantia, who was Daley’s acting cultural affairs commissioner at the end of his term, was hired as the group’s chief financial officer, a position that previously did not exist.

Nonprofit Imperative gathers its information principally from public documents...some of which are directly quoted. Virtually all cited are in some phase of criminal proceedings; some have not been charged, however. Cites in various media: Featured in print, broadcast, and online media outlets, including: Vermont Public Radio, Miami Herald, National Public Radio, Huffington Post, The Sun News, Atlanta Journal Constitution, Wall Street Journal (Profile, News and Photos), FOX2, ABC Spotlight on the News, WWJ Radio, Ethics World, Aspen Philanthropy Newsletter, Harvard Business Review, Current Affairs, The Chronicle of Philanthropy, St. Petersburg Times, B, USA Today Topics, ,, Responsive Philanthropy Magazine, New York Times...and many more • Nonprofits: On the Brink (iUniverse, 2006)
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