Feds investigating Lowell RMV move

Today’s Lowell Sun reports that former city manager Joe Tully and local real estate owner/WCAP Saturday morning show regular Tom Byrne have both received “target letters” from the US Attorney’s office as part of an ongoing Federal probe. The Sun story also reports that state representatives Dave Nangle and Kevin Murphy have recently been interviewed by the FBI and that state senator Steve Panagiotakos and city councilor Bud Caulfield have both received “interceptor letters” indicating that telephone conversations they had with Byrne were recorded by a Federal wiretap.

The Registry of Motor Vehicles was formerly located in a building owned by Irving Paley on Manufacturers Street in Lowell. Paley has been represented by Tully in the past in a number of real estate matters. As part of the FY2010 budget, the Registry of Motor Vehicles announced that it would close the Lowell (and several other) branches around the state. Local opposition to the closure was intense and, as a result of efforts to retain a RMV presence in the city, the agency opted to enter into a new lease for space at the city-owned Edward Early parking garage on Middlesex Street where it is now located.

The last and perhaps only phone conversation I had with Byrne occurred several years ago but any time I drove by his Parker Street parking lot, he was usually sitting in his pickup truck talking on his cell phone. I suspect the folks who were at the other end of that phone through the past year or so are anxiously recalling what was talked about. The transcripts of all those conversations would make for fascinating reading, I’m sure.

By the way, the Sun story is in the electronic edition but does not yet appear on the paper’s website so I can’t provide a link.

3 Responses to Feds investigating Lowell RMV move

  1. Eleanor Rigby says:

    Tully ‘represented’ Paley? To my knowledge Joe Tully is neither a lawyer or real estate broker…so how is he ‘represnting’ anyone?

    Beyond that I don’t know what the FBI is looking for. I doubt that it is illegal for a property owner to do all he can do to lobby for a contract…so what are they looking for?

  2. Prince Charming says:

    The funny thing is that these pols who were friendly with these two are distancing themselves. The Owl Diner should stock up on some Immodium.