A crack team of Twitter sleuths are currently hot on the trail of e-footprints that have left New York citizens with one burning question: is the pro-gun control group Mayors Against Illegal Guns funded with NYC tax dollars?
Blogger John Ekdahl, Jr recently posted on Twitter, “Whoa, whoa, whoa. Why is “Mayors Against Illegal Guns”, a nonprofit, being hosted on NYC gov servers?” He added, “I mean, FFS, the *registrant* of the MAIG domain is NYC. Registrant Name:NYC DoITT.” The DoiTT is the New York Department of Information Technology and Telecommunications.
Why is the New York City government involved in a non-profit organization?
The story has since caught fire across Twitter, though many of the amateur investigators are hesitant to cast blame. Ekdahl was quick to point out that this was “Surely an error made by a Low-Level NYC Gov employee.”
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Others are simply asking, “Is it legal for @MikeBloomberg to appropriate taxpayer money for use by his nonprofit?”
It’s a legitimate question. Government agencies are legally obligated to use tax dollars responsibly, so funding a private non-profit with public money could be a major no-no. Add the fact that MAIG is co-chaired by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, and you have a recipe for a national scandal.
Of course, it’s entirely possible that everything is on the up-and-up. Ekdahl asked, “Is it possible there’s some loophole here?” and then wondered if MAIG is repaying the government agencies to ensure that no tax dollars are being misused.
Unfortunately, the Internet investigators haven’t been able to crack the case quite yet. There is a veritable library of federal, state, and local laws that could influence the legality of this case, and it’s still unclear who is paying for what. Just because a website is registered under a government agency, that does not necessarily mean that that agency is paying for it.
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Either way, it’s definitely fishy. Hopefully, the breaking story will lead to some answers as investigators examine legal documents and track down payment records to figure out if anything illegal is going on.