Boston mayor concerned that 2nd top staff member is charged

BOSTON – Boston Mayor Marty Walsh says he’s deeply concerned about allegations that another top-level member of his staff is facing charges he extorted a music festival production company.

Walsh said Wednesday that he’s called for an independent ethics training program for city department heads and has retained outside counsel to look into how city officials manage festivals and other large events.

The mayor’s chief of staff for intergovernmental affairs was arrested Wednesday and faces conspiracy to extort a company and extortion charges. A lawyer for Timothy Sullivan declined to comment.

Sullivan and Kenneth Brissette are accused of pressuring the Boston Calling music festival’s production company into hiring union workers by withholding necessary city permits and approvals in 2014. Brissette is director of the city’s Office of Tourism, Sports and Entertainment.