$91,000 question: Private payment to mayor amid push for bus deal fuels federal probe
By Marc Perrusquia (Contact), Memphis Commercial Appeal
Monday, January 12, 2009
While he was publicly pressing for redevelopment of the Greyhound station property Downtown, Mayor Willie Herenton privately held an option to buy the land and eventually made more than $90,000 on the deal.
The payment, known to just a handful of close associates, is now the focus of a federal grand jury, according to an investigation by The Commercial Appeal.
Herenton's financial involvement in the deal -- pieced together by the newspaper using sources and a trail of records -- came after years of lobbying by the mayor's office to relocate the eyesore Greyhound station.
The lobbying resulted in the 2005 approval by the Memphis Area Transit Authority of a $16.5 million plan to build a new station near the airport to house both Greyhound and city buses.
For years, Herenton has walked a precarious line between his public duties and private business interests
Link to Commercial Appeal story.