Wednesday, October 20, 2010
BREAKING NEWS EACHUS ADMITS TO FLYING ON ROBERT POWELL'S JET
The Times Leader is reporting that House Majority Leader Todd Eachus is finally admitting to taking a flight on Robert Powell's jet on January 31, 2007, the day of the cargo airport announcement in Hazleton. SOP has been saying for months that Eachus took this flight and never reported it on his Ethics Commission filing dated 02-07-2008.
The approximate value for that trip in that type of jet could run as high as $750.00 one way. Since there were four trips involved (down and back twice) the value could hit as high as $3,000.00.
The round trip from Harrisburg to Hazleton and back was job-related, Eachus said, and he made the trip because it was the only way to make it back to Harrisburg in time to cast votes in the House.
Guess the Wilkes Barre Airport was closed that day. To be clear Harrisburg is a one hour and twenty minute drive from Hazleton.
From the Pennsylvania Ethics Commission Restricted Activities Page:
(b) No person shall offer or give to a public official, public employee, or nominee or candidate for public office or a member of his immediate family or a business with which he is associated, anything of monetary value, including a gift, loan, political contribution, reward or promise of future employment based on the offeror's or donor's understanding that the vote, official action, or judgment of the public official or public employee or nominee or candidate for public office would be influenced thereby.
(c) No public official, public employee or nominee or candidate for public office shall solicit or accept anything of monetary value, including a gift, loan, political contribution, reward, or promise of future employment based on any understanding of that public official, public employee or nominee that the vote, official action, or judgment of the public official or public employee or nominee or candidate for public office would be influenced thereby.
On June 18, 2007 House Bill 1589 was introduced in the House that was amended June 28, 2007. Printer Number 2107 shows that language was inserted into the bill to provide $250,000,000.00 funding for Powell's proposed cargo airport outside of Hazleton less than six months after Eachus accepted the ride on the jet to participate in the announcement.
Eachus received a donation from Robert Powell through his PAC, Conservatives For Good Government in the amount of $5,000.00 on February 6, 2007, just six days after accepting a flight on his jet to and from Harrisburg. Robert Powell donated over $18,000.00 to Todd Eachus from the year 2000 through 2007 according to state records.
Here is a link to the House Actions on January 31, 2007. Since there appears to be no votes that day Eachus should explain to the media which bills he actually voted on.
Eachus should also explain if he took more than one flight on Powell's jet. According to flight records obtained by SOP the following flight to Harrisburg occured on February 2, 2007.
History Search for N69WU
SBR1/L Hazleton Municipal (KHZL)
Capital City (KCXY)
08:35AM EST 08:56AM EST 0:21
SBR1/L Capital City (KCXY)
Hazleton Municipal (KHZL)
10:34AM EST 10:48AM EST 0:14
It should be noted that Powell's jet left Harrisburg on January 31, 2007 at 4:15 in the afternoon. How many votes occcurred on January 31, 2007 after that time?
SBR1/L Capital City (KCXY)
Allegheny Co (KAGC)
04:15PM EST 05:10PM EST 0:55
The jet flew onto Allegheny County presumably to drop of Greg Zappala.