By Susan Crabtree - 08/29/09 04:20 PM EDT
Kheel and Rangel have been friends for decades, but their relationship has come under scrutiny because of a six-figure donation Kheel made to an education center bearing Rangel’s name.
The deletion of any mention of the Ted Kheel Foundation from Rangel’s financial disclosure records comes amid disclosures of more than $660,000 in assets that he previously failed to report in his 2007 financial disclosure record, as well as reports that Rangel did not pay property taxes on two New Jersey parcels of land and previously failed to disclose the sale of a $1.3 million New York brownstone.
Rangel’s office and attorney did not respond to a call and e-mail inquiry about the Ted Kheel foundation.
The Ann S. Kheel Charitable Trust, a non-profit Kheel established in his late wife’s name in 2004 to serve disadvantaged New York neighborhoods, has pledged $440,000 to the Charles B. Rangel Center for Public Policy at the City College of New York.
A 2007 990 tax form for the charitable trust lists Rangel as a trustee and a 2004 article in a New York business publication names Rangel as the chairman of the trust’s board.
In previous financial disclosure forms, however, Rangel has not listed that position, instead saying he is a board member of the Ted Kheel Foundation.
It’s unclear whether this discrepancy was a result of inaccurate information Rangel provided on the form or whether Rangel was a board member of both the foundation and the trust, but only listed the foundation on his required disclosure forms.
When The Hill called the phone number listed on the trust’s 990, a man identified himself as the non-profit’s accountant, said he could not provide a contact number for the trust or Ted Kheel and abruptly hung up.
Other efforts to reach Kheel at several other non-profits he established were unsuccessful.
Kheel is also one of the principal owners of the Punta Cana Beach Resort in the Dominican Republic, where Rangel has a villa.
At Rangel’s request, the ethics committee is looking into his failure to pay more than $70,000 in taxes on rental income from the villa over 10 years. Rangel received an interest-free loan from the developer of the three-bedroom beachfront unit because he was among non-Dominican investors known as “pioneers” who got the break on their loans in 1990 because the property wasn’t producing sufficient income, a director of the Punta Cana Yacht Club has explained.
Last year, when news of the interest-free loan first broke, Rangel’s lawyer said Rangel was unaware of the mortgage details until reporters started asking about them. Rangel attributed subsequent reports that his financial reports were riddled with inaccuracies and omissions to simple sloppiness and paid an accounting firm $100,000 to conduct an audit.