Sunday, January 10, 2016
Corruption is so endemic among New York's politicians that even following the smallest of laws is ignored. Of course Charlie Rangel would be onstage with him.
Rep. Gregory Meeks has been living in his 6,000-square-foot Queens mansion for nearly a decade — without city authorization.
He never got a required certificate of occupancy for the custom-built Hollis home, finished in late 2006.
A temporary certificate of occupancy, which he needed to get his mortgage, expired Jan. 4, 2007, and was never renewed, city records show.
“If you want to get technical, he’s not supposed to be living there,” said Mark Maimon, vice president of Sterling National Bank’s Residential Mortgage Division. “Without the certificate of occupancy, it’s not considered . . . to be a habitable residence until the city can get in there and make sure everything is safe and sound.”
The Department of Buildings sent an inspector to the home when it received a complaint about the lapse in November, but no one was home. It left a notice on the door saying it had been there and to call the agency.
The Democrat said he would address the situation.
“Until recently, I had no idea that there had only been a temporary certificate of occupancy. I will be in touch with the Buildings Department and the architect to bring this into compliance,” he said in a statement.
The home has created controversy for Meeks.
He borrowed $624,000 to buy the $830,000 property and took out a $78,000 line of credit.
Then, in 2007, Meeks got a $40,000 “loan” from businessman Edul Ahmad that he said went to furnishing and other household needs. He made no payments on it and claimed to have lost the loan paperwork.
It was paid only in 2010 after the FBI began probing Ahmad, later indicted in a mortgage-fraud scheme.
The House Ethics Committee opened a probe after Meeks failed to report the loan. It dropped the matter after Ahmad refused to help.
To repay Ahmad, Meeks borrowed $60,000, taking out a mortgage with a company belonging to Democratic donor Dennis Mehiel.