Catherine Pugh, mayor of Baltimore, self-published a book several years ago called Healthy Holly, which encourages children to exercise. The University of Maryland Medical System bought 100,000 books for $500,000, purportedly to donate to children.
Pugh was a member of the system’s board at the time and contracted with the system through her business. She was still a board member during her tenure as mayor. She didn’t close the payments or the fact that she was a board member. When sources reported the deal, Pugh returned some of the money and resigned from the board.
Fox News reported that Kaiser Permanente also bought some Healthy Holly books. While Pugh was mayor, Baltimore’s budget committee awarded the Kaiser Foundation Health Plan of the Mid-Atlantic States, Inc., a contract worth $48 million.
Pugh spent time in the hospital with pneumonia. After she was released, she announced an indefinite leave of absence earlier this month. The state prosecutor has opened an investigation into Pugh’s dealings.
The consequences are raining down on Pugh. The Baltimore Sun reported on Thursday that the FBI and the IRS have raided Baltimore’s city hall and Pugh’s home. An excerpt:
Dave Fitz, an FBI spokesman, confirmed agents from the Baltimore FBI office and the Washington IRS office were executing search warrants at those locations Thursday morning, as well as at least three other addresses associated with the Democratic mayor. It was the first confirmation that federal authorities, as well as state officials, were investigating the mayor’s activities.
Pugh remained inside her home during the raids, a police source confirmed.
Shortly after the raids began, Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan called on Pugh, who has taken a leave of absence as mayor, to resign.