A New York assemblyman is demanding answers after revelations about former CIA Director David Petraeus’s high salary as a visiting professor at City University of New York.
“Hiring a glamorous part-time adjunct professor at the rate of $200,000 or $150,000 is wrong,” said Assemblyman Kieran Lalor, a Republican, in an interview with The Daily Caller News Foundation.
CUNY agreed to pay Petraeus — who resigned from the CIA after admitting to having an extramarital affair with his biographer — $200,000 to teach a course this fall, according to documents obtained by Gawker.
The class would only run for three hours each week, and CUNY will supply Petraeus with graduate students to help grade papers and conduct research.
The salary struck many as too high, given that CUNY is a public university — and that the average first-time adjunct at CUNY makes only $25,000.
“This is a raw deal for the taxpayer and the student,” said Lalor. “Tuition is going up every year.”
The timeline of the revelations is also suspect, said Lalor. CUNY initially offered $200,000 to Petraeus. But after Gawker made the amount public, university administrators released an email showing that the amount had been lowered. It isn’t clear whether the Petraeus accepted the lower salary earlier this year, or if CUNY changed the figure because of the public outcry.
“I’m very skeptical of what they have told us,” said Lalor, who sent an email to university officials asking for clarification. “Petraeus has been caught in some dishonesty before and its disappointing.”
A portion of Petraeus’ salary will be donated to veterans’ organizations, said CUNY officials. This rankled Lalor as well, who said CUNY and Petraeus were taking the important issue of veterans’ wellness and using it “as sort of a PR deflection tool.”
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