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Ex-aide to Austin Mayor Steve Adler pleads guilty to federal charges: Report

The report states the aide continued to apply for Affordable Care Act grant funding on behalf of a nonprofit he co-founded and ran before joining Adler's office.

AUSTIN, Texas — A former aide to Austin Mayor Steve Adler has pleaded guilty to taking payments from a nonprofit that won a federal contract he promoted, according to an investigation conducted by KVUE's partners at the Austin American-Statesman.

Frank Rodriguez, 71, left his job as a senior policy adviser to the mayor after the American-Statesman investigated his actions in 2017. He pleaded guilty earlier this month to conspiring to misapply federal funds and to falsifying records.

According to the Statesman, Rodriguez faces up to five years in prison and will be sentenced March 24 in federal court. His attorney told the Statesman they would not be commenting on the case before the sentencing. Mayor Adler also declined the Statesman's request for comment.

The report states that Rodriguez continued to apply for federal Affordable Care Act grant funding on behalf of the Latino HealthCare Forum, a nonprofit he co-founded and ran before he left in 2015 to join the mayor's office. 

The FBI confirmed to the Statesman that Rodriguez used his city job to influence the success of his own application, then benefitted financially from the application's success. 

For a look at the Statesman's full report, click here

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