Defrancisco Calls on Senate Democrats to Stop State Payments to Acorn, Affiliates

John A. DeFrancisco

September 15, 2009


September 15, 2009

Contact: Bénédicte Doran


Group Caught in ‘Hooker’ Sting in Line for Millions in Taxpayer Funds

State Senator John A. DeFrancisco today called on Senators Darrel Aubertine and David Valesky to join in blocking ACORN and its affiliates from receiving any more state funding following an undercover sting that caught agents of the group trying to help supposed pimps and prostitutes cheat on their taxes.

Aubertine and Valesky are cosponsors of legislation that seeks to direct hundreds of millions of taxpayer dollars to groups like ACORN, a left-leaning, Brooklyn-based “community organization” that has been implicated in a host of election fraud and other cases, and is now the subject of a probe by New York City law enforcement.

“We’ve all had a chance to see the alarming undercover video of ACORN agents in three different cities offering to help break the law, cheat taxpayers and promote underage prostitution,” said Senator DeFrancisco.

“Yet this same group is in line to receive hundreds of millions of dollars under legislation that was sponsored by Senators Aubertine and Valesky,” said Senator DeFrancisco. “The US Senate had voted overwhelmingly to prevent funding to ACORN and state Senators should do the same,” continued Senator DeFrancisco.

“I believe that the state has an obligation to protect taxpayers’ money, and ensure that is not being spent on groups that have less than the highest regard for our laws, and Senators Aubertine and Valesky can send a message right now that they share that commitment.”

Under Aubertine and Valesky’s “Green Jobs” plan, Senate Bill 5888, groups like ACORN are eligible to receive state funding for energy-related services, marketing, training and outreach.

The bill sparked intense debate on the Senate floor during which Senator Aubertine seemed to dodge questions over ACORN’s involvement in the program, but other Democrat Senators defended the group.

Senator DeFrancisco voted against the bill because it contains little accountability over what groups would be eligible to participate in the program, and minimal oversight over how the groups used the funds.  Moreover, the legislation duplicates existing programs that are already funded through various state agencies.

ACORN’s agents were videotaped during an undercover sting giving tax and other advice to a couple who were posing as a pimp and prostitute. Among other things, ACORN agents offered suggestions that would help the couple hide the true nature of their activities, which included using underage illegal immigrants as prostitutes.