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Chelsea Housing Authority Chair Steps Down Following Pressure From Gov.

By Karen Anderson, WBZ-TV
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CHELSEA (CBS) – The chair of the Chelsea Housing Authority is off the job. Henry Cordero, the only state appointee, stepped down this afternoon, following pressure from the Governor.

Maria Rivera also stepped down today. Now everyone on the board that approved the outrageous $360,000 salary for former Chelsea Housing Authority Chair Michael McLaughlin is out of a job.

WBZ went to McLaughlin’s home in Dracut Monday. He was there but said he had no comment on the case.

Officials say his family friend, the CHA Accountant, recently wrote him checks for more than $200,000 for vacation and sick days after the investigation was launched. He cashed one of the checks, but the Governor’s office says they are working to get the money back.

“The glaring disregard they showed for their public responsibilities is inexcusable,” said Governor Patrick. “Even though this is an independent authority, we must have transparency and accountability. ”

The State Inspector General, the State Auditor, the Attorney General and the Federal HUD Inspector General were all at the CHA Headquarters collecting evidence and interviewing employees today.

The story was first uncovered by the Boston Globe.

A crucial issue in the investigation is whether McLaughlin committed a crime by falsely reporting his income.

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