Philly public housing workers sue agency over payroll deductions for alleged lobbying, parties

By Maryclaire Dale, AP
Thursday, September 16, 2010

Philly housing workers: We had to pay to keep jobs

PHILADELPHIA — Public housing workers in Philadelphia say they were forced to make payroll deductions into a slush fund that paid for improper lobbying and lavish parties for their boss, or risk losing their jobs.

The accusations in a lawsuit filed Wednesday are just the latest problem for the embattled Philadelphia Housing Authority.

Executive director Carl Greene is on leave amid reports the agency secretly agreed to pay $900,000 to female employees who accused Greene of sexual harassment.

Federal investigators are reviewing the settlements along with other spending. The sprawling agency gets most of its $345 million budget from the federal government.

The suit says top employees had to pay about $130 a year toward the fund and that the lobbying was not reported.

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