A member of the Village Council took a few minutes at Tuesday night’s council meeting to address a recent Palm Beach Post article on her husband.
Wellington Councilwoman Tanya Siskind’s comments came toward the end of a lengthy budget meeting where two residents called for Siskind to recuse herself from voting on financial issues in the wake of the Post’s investigation into allegations against Jeffrey Siskind, who is running for state Attorney General.
The Post’s investigation found that in several lawsuits Jeffrey Siskind is accused of theft and fraud and also that the couple’s home is in foreclosure.
“I’d actually like to use some of my closing comments to address the article that was mentioned here tonight that was written in The Palm Beach Post that references some ongoing litigation involving my husband and some businesses that he has been involved in in the past,” Tanya Siskind said. “And I want to make it perfectly clear that I have no involvement nor have I ever been involved in any of those cases or businesses whatsoever. Even though the article was written to imply that I do, that is false.”
The Post investigation did include two lawsuits in which she is listed with her husband as a defendant. One is the foreclosure on their home in the Southfields neighborhood. The second is a lawsuit from the luxury Ocean Reef Resort in the Keys, which is suing the Siskinds over a nearly $6,000 bill for a March 2017 vacation.
“I was not interviewed or asked one single question for that article,” Tanya Siskind said. “So I don’t really feel the need to comment right now after the fact except to say I have nothing to do with my husband’s law practice or business interests, and I want to reassure everybody that I will continue to do my job on this council as I have always done, and my priority has and always will be working for the betterment of Wellington and volunteering in the community. And that’s really all I have to say about that,” Siskind added.
Earlier in the meeting, the councilwoman faced two residents who, during separate public comments periods, asked for her to step aside from voting on any financial issues.
“I wonder when you have a situation where you financial life is in complete disarray, how is it you can make financial decisions for the well-being of we residents?” Olympia resident Bill Wheelen said.
Before the council voted on the proposed budget, Village Attorney Laurie Cohen said it would not be necessary for Siskind to recuse herself from any votes, unless the agenda item presents a “special financial benefit” to Siskind, her family members or a related business.
“Voting on a budget like this, there really isn’t anything that would become a special financial benefit to you,” Cohen said. “… I don’t believe there’s any conflict.”
What The Post reported
A recent Palm Beach Post investigation found that in several lawsuits, Florida Attorney General candidate Jeffrey Siskind is accused of theft and fraud. Among his accusers are former clients including pill-mill kingpin Chris George and his ex-wife Dianna, former strip club owner David Fiore and West Palm Beach businessman Frederick Volkwein. Siskind also faces foreclosure on his family home.