Dems seek probe into Pruitt aide banned from banking

Dems seek probe into Pruitt aide banned from banking
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Two House Democrats are asking the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) internal watchdog to investigate an adviser to Administrator Scott PruittEdward (Scott) Scott PruittSierra Club sues EPA over claim that climate change 'is 50 to 75 years out' EPA on 'forever chemicals': Let them drink polluted water EPA moving ahead with science transparency rule by 'early next year' MORE who was banned nationally last year from the banking sector.

Albert “Kell” Kelly used to lead SpiritBank, based in Pruitt’s hometown of Tulsa, Okla. The two have known each other for years and Kelly got Pruitt financing for a mortgage and to help buy a minor league baseball team.

Pruitt hired Kelly last year as an adviser for the Superfund program, shortly before the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. (FDIC) settled unknown allegations against Kelly by banning him from banking for a year.

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“Mr. Kelly came to this position without the necessary qualifications, and with serious and still-unexplained red flags, and his conduct has raised ethical, regulatory and potential legal issues that we believe your office should examine,” Reps. Don Beyer (D-Va.) and Gerry ConnollyGerald (Gerry) Edward ConnollyOvernight Energy: Watchdog warns of threats to federal workers on public lands | Perry to step down on December 1 | Trump declines to appear in Weather Channel climate special Perry won't comply with subpoena in impeachment inquiry Trump confirms Rick Perry to step down as Energy secretary MORE (D-Va.) wrote to the EPA’s Office of Inspector General, seeking an investigation into Kelly’s hiring and management of Superfund.

They said that Kelly’s “only apparent connections to environmental regulation were his investments in companies deemed by the EPA to be responsible for the creation of Superfund sites and his longstanding friendship and financial relationship with Administrator Pruitt.”

The Democrats questioned if Kelly disclosed his FDIC troubles to federal hiring managers.

Kelly recently downplayed the FDIC action in an interview with the Montana Standard, and said he agreed to it only because he had run out of money to fight the regulators.

“My problem with the FDIC emanated from one singular transaction in 2010. They didn't like it,” Kelly said. “The bank didn't lose any money. The bank made money. There was nothing untoward about it.”