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New Pick To Head D.C. Housing Agency Embroiled In Sex Scandal

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Michael Kelly, tapped Monday to head the D.C. Housing and Community Development agency, finds himself in scandal already.
Larry Miller: http://www.flickr.com/photos/drmillerlg/1246397248/
Michael Kelly, tapped Monday to head the D.C. Housing and Community Development agency, finds himself in scandal already.

Mayor Vincent Gray's pick to run the D.C. Housing and Community Development agency is facing questions about why he left his former job in Pennsylvania. WPVI, Philadelphia's ABC affiliate, reports that Michael Kelly resigned from his housing authority job amid allegations of a sex scandal.

Gray named Kelly as director of the Department of Housing and Community Development on Monday. Kelly most recently served as executive director of the Philadelphia Housing Authority. 

Kelly reportedly had an affair with a woman who worked for him there. The station reports that staffers under Kelly complained to federal officials that the woman had unfairly received large pay increases.

Mayor Gray's office says it supports Kelly. "Mr. Kelly had a consensual relationship with the woman... The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development investigated the matter and determined there was nothing more to the story," the mayor's office said in a statement released Tuesday. "Michael made a personal mistake, and we stand by his nomination."

Sources at the Wilson Building say Kelly informed the mayor's office about the relationship before the hiring. 

Kelly is returning to the city less than three years after resigning from the D.C. Housing Authority, which he led for nine years. Gray spokesman Pedro Ribeiro says Kelly will start July 2 and make $165,000 a year. The man he's replacing, John Hall, will become a senior advisor to the deputy mayor for planning and economic development.

Kelly could not be reached for comment.

The Gray administration has been dogged by hiring scandals and shoddy vetting of candidates, although in this case, it appears they were aware of Kelly's situation. Kelly must still be confirmed by the D.C. Council.

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