Fire Department Commissioner Daniel Nigro is receiving scrutiny after allegations have emerged that at least eight firefighters were dispatched to his Whitestone home to clear a path to the street following this weekend’s blizzard.
On Sunday morning, Nigro instructed two FDNY crews to shovel a clearing through snow on his property that was blocking his access to the street, the New York Post reported. Those two crews, from Engine Company 320 and Ladder Company 167, could not be dispatched to other emergencies while they were shoveling his property.
“If there was a fire around the corner from his house, those two companies couldn’t be assigned,” a source told the Post.
The FDNY’s dispatch system showed that the two units were assigned to “ASSIST COMM NIGRO W/SNOW REMOVAL,” the Daily Mail reported in a related article.
The assignment was categorized as an “ADMINISTRATIVE ASSIGNMENT” — preventing the two units from being sent on any emergency calls, the Post added.
“The firefighters … did not miss any calls and were available to respond to any serious incidents that might have occurred in the area — but did not — during the few minutes they helped [Nigro],” an FDNY spokesman said to the Daily Mail about the incident.
The city’s Conflict of Interest Law “prohibits a public servant from using or attempting to use his or her city position to obtain a private benefit for the public servant” — including “having your subordinates do free work for you that you would have to pay someone else to do,” the Post reported.