Lawmaker wants probe of ex-UFT aide paid by Adrienne Adams’ office

A Brooklyn lawmaker is demanding a probe into Democratic operative Jonathan Yedin, who is running a consulting firm while getting paid a sweet $150,000 a year in taxpayer money working for Council Speaker Adrienne Adams’ office.

“I am calling for the Department of Investigation to conduct an investigation of this situation,” said Councilman Ari Kagan. “It smacks of corruption. It’s a clear conflict of interest.”

“His dual role is unethical, if not illegal. Jonathan Yedin makes $150,000? That’s more than council members!” Kagan added.

Council members are paid a base salary of $148,000 per year.

Yedin works in the Council’s finance division.

His pal and former boss, Brooklyn Councilman Justin Brannan is the powerful chairman of the Council Finance Committee.

Kagan, a Democrat-turned-Republican, plans on running against Democrat Brannan in a redrawn 47th council district in southern Brooklyn this fall.

The party switcher claimed Brannan was behind recommending that Speaker Adrienne Adams install Yedin as a special adviser in the finance division that works on budget issues.

Ari Kagan
Councilman Ari Kagan is demanding a probe into the dual role of campaign operative Jonathan Yedin.
Facebook/Ari Kagan

“Of course Brannan is behind this. Justin Brannan is chairman of the finance committee, no? Yedin used to be deputy chief of staff to Brannan,” the councilman said.

One source familiar with the Council’s inner workings said Yedin could have input in which legislators get hundreds of thousands of dollars in additional “member items” or legislative grants for their districts.

Yedin has three campaign clients who serve in the Council — Brannan,  Althea Stevens of the Bronx and Nantasha Williams of Queens.

Yedin, whose Power Play Strategies website boasts a client list that includes the United Federation of Teachers and a slew of candidates for Council, state Legislature, district attorney and Congress, again defended his dual jobs on Wednesday when asked about Kagan’s demand for a probe.

“After working in city and state government for a decade, I was proud to transition into central staff at the City Council. I have always strictly followed the rules with regard to outside political activities for public servants and do not lobby. Suggesting otherwise is nothing more than a distraction from the job at hand: delivering for New Yorkers,” Yedin said in a statement to The Post.

Yedin, though his firm’s website boasts of having the UFT as a client, said he last did campaign work for the teachers’ union in 2016 and 2017 — before joining the Council.

Kagan wants the Department of Investigation to investigate Yedin.
Kagan wants the Department of Investigation to investigate Yedin.
Gabriella Bass

The UFT regularly lobbies the Council.

The Post previously exposed Yedin for placard abuse while working for Brannan.

A spokesperson for Speaker Adams and the Council brushed off Kagan’s call for an ethics probe, insisting Yedin’s Council employment is legal and appropriate under city Conflict of Interest Board rules.

“The City’s board that rules on conflicts of interest clearly allows employees to be paid consultants on political campaigns and business owners, like this, outside of city time and resources and when in compliance with all guidance,” the spokesperson said in a statement.

“We would have been happy to show Council Member Kagan where these city rules exist or connect him to COIB if he’d reached out.”

Brannan, via a campaign statement, said working for the government and campaign consulting is “completely legal” and returned fire against his likely general election rival, Kagan.

“Just like Ari switching parties, this is just another cheap political stunt. It is impossible for Ari to compete with Justin’s record of delivering for his district so now he is getting desperate — hardly surprising coming from an old Democratic hack turned Trump Republican. Ari should spend more time doing his job,” the statement said.