Monday, November 19, 2018
Business

Newspaper report triggers investigation and fine for charity consultant

New York regulators fined a telemarketing consultant for some of America's worst charities $50,000 on Wednesday after officials determined he had violated a lifetime ban on raising money there.

New York's attorney general began investigating Mark Gelvan of Montville, N.J., after the Tampa Bay Times and The Center for Investigative Reporting revealed in June that Gelvan remained active in the fundraising industry despite his ban.

The Times/CIR report ranked America's 50 worst charities based on the money they spent hiring professional solicitors. Gelvan acted as a fundraising consultant with several of those charities.

In a press release, New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman said Gelvan violated his ban when his company brokered fundraising agreements for two charities.

Schneiderman's office said Gelvan arranged for a telemarketer to call New Yorkers on behalf of Woman to Woman Breast Cancer Foundation in Florida and the National Vietnam Veterans Foundation in Virginia.

Gelvan received more than $37,000 in money raised for the two charities from New Yorkers, the state's investigation found. Gelvan did not return a call for comment.

In 2004, Gelvan agreed to a lifetime ban on raising funds for charity in New York while admitting no wrongdoing. Regulators had accused him of making false claims to donors, including saying donations to a police charity would be used to benefit families of slain troopers.

Gelvan remains barred from soliciting for charities or profiting from charity fundraising in New York.

Comments
Brightline-Virgin rail service from Tampa to Orlando has estimated cost of $1.7 billion

Brightline-Virgin rail service from Tampa to Orlando has estimated cost of $1.7 billion

A financing plan filed last week with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission offers new details about the partnership between Miami-based Brightline and Sir Richard Branson's Virgin Group.
Updated: 3 hours ago
St. Petersburg, four other Florida cities, make top 20 list of hottest LGBTQ holiday destinations

St. Petersburg, four other Florida cities, make top 20 list of hottest LGBTQ holiday destinations

St. Petersburg, which has been trying to draw in more gay tourists, has been named No. 11 on a list of top 20 gay holiday destinations this year.
Updated: 7 hours ago
Thanksgiving gas prices headed for two-year low

Thanksgiving gas prices headed for two-year low

Gas prices in Florida are on track to be the lowest in two years, a boon for the 2.5 million travelers AAA, The Auto Club Group, expects to hit the roadways for the holiday this week.
Updated: 8 hours ago
IRS: Tarpon Springs couple used 'sham' companies to keep from paying $8.8 million in taxes

IRS: Tarpon Springs couple used 'sham' companies to keep from paying $8.8 million in taxes

The federal government accuses William and Regina Planes of Tarpon Springs of creating "alter egos'' and "sham trusts'' to keep the IRS from collecting more than $8.8 million in taxes they owed.
Published: 11/19/18
Who’s selling sports goods after midnight on Black Friday? Where do you go to get a tie at 3 a.m.?

Who’s selling sports goods after midnight on Black Friday? Where do you go to get a tie at 3 a.m.?

This holiday overview of area retail outlets guides you to the answers
Published: 11/19/18
Ernest Hooper: Initiative provides chance to make a better Tampa for pedestrians, cyclists

Ernest Hooper: Initiative provides chance to make a better Tampa for pedestrians, cyclists

Viable, safe alternatives to using a car in Hillsborough County remain as uncommon as snow.
Published: 11/19/18
Make-A-Wish builds Pinellas special needs teen a custom playhouse

Make-A-Wish builds Pinellas special needs teen a custom playhouse

Make-A-Wish Southern Florida surprised a Pinellas County teen with a custom backyard play set specifically designed for his needs.
Published: 11/19/18
Hernando Business Happenings

Hernando Business Happenings

News and notes on local businesses
Published: 11/19/18
Dear Penny: I need a car, but my credit is awful. Will I get ripped off?

Dear Penny: I need a car, but my credit is awful. Will I get ripped off?

Some advice on how to find an affordable used car at a price you can afford.
Published: 11/19/18
Tarpon Springs eases development rules on Sponge Docks

Tarpon Springs eases development rules on Sponge Docks

Development will become easier at both ends of the docks, though officials say the character won't change.
Published: 11/19/18