ATTORNEY GENERAL Eliot Spitzer should step down from his family’s charity because it conflicts with his job policing New York’s philanthropies, rival gubernatorial hopeful Tom Suozzi said yesterday. “Spitzer must immediately remove himself,” Suozzi said at a news conference in Manhattan. “More importantly, Eliot needs to quantify and define and disclose any and all contacts between the attorney general’s office and Eliot Spitzer’s family charity.
” Suozzi’s comments came after the Daily News detailed relationships between the Spitzers’ family trust and campaign supporters. Suozzi said an advisory opinion by the state Ethics Commission bars government employees from serving as board members at nonprofits licensed by the agencies they work for. But a spokesman for the attorney general said yesterday that the Spitzer family trust doesn’t fall under the category of a nonprofit. “They’re two different animals,” said spokesman Darren Dopp. “Not-for-profit corporations solicit money from the public, and the attorney general’s office monitors the soliciting and the expenditure of the money to make sure they’re doing the right thing. “We have no comparable function with regard to family charitable trusts because a trust is someone giving away their own money,” he added. “The potential for abuse is virtually nil.
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