Timothy Pearson has stepped down from his high-ranking position with Resorts World Casino New York City.
Pearson is a retired NY police department inspector and confidant of mayor Eric Adams. This move comes after it was revealed Pearson also holds a role in Adams’ administration, according to the New York Times.
Pearson’s job title with Resorts World was security vice president and senior advisor. He started working for the mayor early in 2022 as an advisor for public safety, and an arrangement was made that let Pearson retain both positions.
Amidst much criticism being thrown Pearson’s way, he opted to leave his role with Resorts World to focus on his work with the mayor.
John Kaehny, executive director of Reinvent Albany, told the NY Times that Pearson’s departure from the casino job “reduces the conflict of interest that he had.”
That’s because Pearson’s city job could expose him to information that would give Resorts World the upper hand against other New York casinos bidding for a downstate license.
City Hall’s support of the NY casino adds to fishiness
City officials haven’t declared Pearson’s salary for his city job with the mayor, and Resorts World never made his salary public from his time working for the casino.
More positions with Resorts World recently opened up as the casino looks to expand its operation in New York City.
News of Pearson’s work with each group became public in May.
Critics believe Pearson is violating a loophole that allows him to collect a government salary through the Economic Development Corporation (EDC).
But here’s where things get even stickier. Employees of city agencies aren’t also allowed to collect city pensions. Well, Pearson is receiving one from his time with the police department.
Many also believe City Hall’s support of Resorts World’s expansion plans will be pivotal. Add in the potential conflict of interest Pearson’s position under Adams could have had and you have another layer of potential corruption.
And, yes, there’s one more layer of conflict of interest in all of this. It arises when considering Pearson’s role with the casino is overseeing security. His role under the mayor is connected to public safety.
Thus, the former inspector could have more police resources in the area around Resorts World’s property because safety is always a concern in the casino areas.
Resorts World, Mayor Adams’ camp speaks out on the situation
Resorts World said this in a statement last Sunday:
“Tim is a distinguished hero who served the city for many years as a leader at N.Y.P.D. Tim used those same skills to keep our facility and community safe for over a decade. We support his decision to lend his expertise to the city in its pursuit of making our streets safer, and we wish him well.”
Fabian Levy, a spokesman for mayor Adams, said he didn’t view Pearson’s role with the city to be in conflict with his casino gig. Levy also commented that New Yorkers will benefit from Pearson solely focusing on his public safety duties now that he’s left Resorts World.