It seems if you put a public servant in a position of power they seem all too eager to get their hands on public cash http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20110923/14202016078/tallahassee-mayor-accused-being-ats-payroll-while-allegedly-diverting-federal-funds-to-att-lobbying-group.shtml
There's been plenty of talk about AT&T's deep lobbying connections around government, and its ability to put the name of various front groups on letters and op-eds penned by AT&T lobbyists. Most of those are probably legal, if icky and manipulative. But, in some cases, it appears that things may have crossed the line. BroadbandReports has the details on how the Mayor of Tallahassee, John Marks, apparently has been on the AT&T payroll since 1990 as a "lawyer and consultant."
Marks is now being accused of taking $1.6 million in federal funds, and diverting it to a group called "the Alliance for Digital Equality" (ADE), which claims that it's trying to help get internet access to poor people. Except.... the group is entirely funded by AT&T and: "uses its funds simply to lobby for AT&T, and did little to nothing to actually help the disadvantaged." Mayor Marks, beyond being paid by AT&T, is also a paid member of ADE's board of advisors -- something he apparently didn't think was necessary to disclose when he brought ADE to the City Commission in an effort to have that $1.6 million granted to the group.
Selfish plundering of the cookie jar, how disappointingly mundane and of course damaging to the many genuine support groups out there.