Federal authorities have charged former Philadelphia city election official Rene Tartaglione with stealing from a Fairhill mental health clinic.
If you follow Philadelphia politics, you’ll recognize the name.
The Tartagliones are a well-known name in Democratic machine politics here.
Renee is the daughter of northeast Philly ward leader Marge Tartaglione, who headed the city election board for decades. Her sister is State Senator Tina Tartaglione.
Renee Tartaglione was a longtime deputy commissioner in her mother’s office until she resigned in 2010 after being fined by the ethics board for prohibited political activity.
Renee’s husband, Carlos Matos is also a veteran of Philly politics with a colorful history. He served three years after being convicted in a bribery case in Atlantic City. He was released in 2010, and made his way back into politics. He’s now Democratic leader of the 19th ward.
Matos has been described in past media accounts as director of the Juniata Community Mental Health Clinic, and the new federal indictment says Renee Tartaglione was chair of its board.
The indictment charges that Tartaglione bought the building that housed the clinic on N. 3rd St, and raised the clinic’s rent from $4,500 to $25,000 a month.
It further charges that she and a co-conspirator bought another building on 5th street and leased it to the clinic at an even higher rent.
She faces charges of conspiracy, fraud, theft and tax evasion.
I reached Matos on the phone, who described the case as “political bullshit,” but said he couldn’t discuss it further.