Last Thursday, news broke that the city had picked Philadelphia's Emerald Green Group to operate the new Tavern on the Green restaurant. Emerald Green has never launched a project in the city before, and they beat out several other experienced NYC operators for the contract. But now the Post learns that one of the owners of the company, Jim Caiola, is actually the brother-in-law of former Deputy Mayor Kevin Sheekey. Although Sheekey no longer works for the city, he now holds a position as an executive at Bloomberg LP, and he is apparently "one of Mayor Bloomberg’s top confidants."
Sheekey tells the Post that he did not help Caiola land the Tavern on the Green deal, noting: "My wife told me he was submitting a bid, but I never spoke to him about it, nor did I communicate with anyone at City Hall.” City Comptroller John Liu will be examining the contract to make sure it was awarded appropriately. Parks Department spokesman Phil Abramson insists that the city "looked at the proposals based on the merits.”
· TOTG Bidders Have Family Ties to One of Bloomberg's Top Confidants [NYP]
· Liu starts Tavern Bid Probe [NYP]
· Philly Group Selected to Operate Tavern on the Green [~ENY~]