Justice Department Refers Fauntroy Allegations to House Ethics Committee.
WASHINGTON (AP) _ The Justice Department said today it has referred to the House ethics committee allegations that Walter Fauntroy, Washington’s non-voting congressional delegate, hired a colleague’s son for a no-show job.
The department, which decided recently not to bring criminal charges against Fauntroy following a lengthy investigation, referred the matter for review by the House Committee on Standards of Official Conduct.
Although there was no evidence of criminal wrongdoing by Fauntroy, ″there was information that the House ethics committee might want to look at,″ said spokesman David Runkel, who declined to give further details.
Fauntroy, D-D.C., was the subject of a 15-month investigation by the department into allegations that he had hired the son of Rep. Gus Savage, D- Ill., for a no-show job.
Thomas Savage was on Fauntroy’s payroll from September 1987 through June 1988, except for an unpaid leave of absence, a period when he said he went to Illinois to run for the legislature.
Under House rules, congressional employees must work in Washington or in the district the member represents.
Runkel said a parallel investigation of Gus Savage had also been closed for lack of evidence to warrant any prosecution, but the matter also was referred to the House ethics committee.
The Justice Department examined whether the elder Savage was aware of any possible wrongdoing in Fauntroy’s hiring of his son, said sources who spoke on condition of anonymity.
The Washington Post today quoted unidentified sources as saying the Justice Department’s Public Integrity Section believed there ″were some things the ethics committee might want to look at″ in the case of Savage’s son.
A spokesman for Fauntroy, Abbe Lowell, told the Post that referral to the committee was routine in such cases, saying the department ″has done no more and no less than follow their normal practices.″
Jan Keyes, a spokeswoman for the ethics panel, declined to comment on whether it would open an investigation.
Fauntroy is a candidate for mayor in this fall’s election and may not seek re-election to his House seat.