Friday, January 06, 2006

Deadbeat Evelyn

Not only did New Jersey Assemblywoman Evelyn Williams (D-Essex) get arrested for shoplifting and fired for a pension scam, but she also stiffed Corzine campaign workers the $60 a day she promised them.

From the Star-Ledger:
For five days leading up to November's gubernatorial election, Ervin Mathis pounded the streets of Newark, pushing the Democratic ticket.

He handed out doorknob hangers and collected absentee ballots throughout the city's South Ward. On Election Day, he took a post outside the Palm Gardens Holiness
Church on Bergen Street, distributing campaign literature and placing leaflets on parked cars.

But once the election was over, Mathis said, he never got the $240 he was promised. Instead, he got excuses from the woman who hired him -- Assemblywoman and South Ward Democratic chairwoman Evelyn Williams.

Mathis is one of seven Democratic electioneers interviewed by The Star-Ledger who claim they still have not been paid for their work during the final days of the campaign. All the workers were hired and supervised by Williams.

Here's more:
The campaign workers, who said they were hired
by Williams to promote Jon Corzine and the Democratic ticket, say they signed up every morning at a storefront on Bergen Street, where Williams dispatched them to various South Ward neighborhoods.

Others, mostly senior citizens, were sent to a phone bank in Orange. The workers were promised between $60 and $75 for each day they worked and told they would be paid by check every two days.

But two months after the election, the workers say they're still waiting for their money. They say Williams held them off with excuses in the days after the election, then disappeared altogether. At one point, workers said, she offered them Thanksgiving turkeys to hold them over until they got their checks. The turkeys never came either, they said.

"She wanted to give people turkeys and I was like, 'Give me my money and I'll buy my own turkey,'" said Mathis, an unemployed machine mechanic who said he is owed pay for five days, including Election Day.

"We worked for Corzine going door-to-door getting absentee ballots, handing out the doorknocker things with his name on it. We did all that and she didn't pay us," he said.

So what did Williams do with the money she owed these people? I'm sure Corzine will make good on her promise to pay them, but maybe the IRS should look into whether his campaign paid proper payroll taxes (or issued 1099's) and whether each worker was paid a prevailing wage.

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