Council Speaker Christine Quinn advised Councilman Ydanis Rodriguez to re-hire David Segal, the councilman’s spokesman whose past arrest record for attempting to burn down an Army recruitment center led to his recent dismissal, a source close to the situation tells us.
Segal was fired last week after the New York Post revealed that seven years ago he had spent six months in federal prison for throwing a burning rag into a Bronx army recruitment center, and then gluing the doors shut. Segal apologized for his actions, but Rodriguez, who said he was blind-sided by the report, fired him.
Now, as the Politicker reported earlier today, Segal is back on the job, thanks to some “legal advice” from the speaker’s office. At the time of his firing, the Council’s legal counsel told the Post that firing someone based on a past criminal record unrelated to the job they were hired to do would be a violation of state law. That message was apparently delivered to Rodriguez, prompting Segal’s re-hiring.
The speaker’s office contested the notion that Rodriguez was pressured to re-hire Segal, stating that it simply provided legal advice on the situation.
“Our General Counsel’s Office responds to requests for legal advice from Council Members about lawful employment practices, we have provided that advice to Council Member Rodriquez,” said Quinn spokesman Jamie McShane.
Segal declined comment. Rodriguez did not answer a call to his cell phone seeking comment.
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