The Aide That Wouldn't LeaveChristina Del Valle
IT'S THE SAME old Washington revolving door. The former top aide of House Transportation Committee Chairman Bud Shuster (R-Pa.) lobbies the panel--and helps run his reelection campaign. Ann Eppard, his $108,000-a-year chief of staff until last November, falls afoul of no law. Federal conflict-of-interest statutes ban highly paid ex-Hill staffers from lobbying former bosses. Eppard says she lobbies members of the committee, never the chairman.
After helping shape federal transportation policy for 25 years, she opened Ann Eppard Associates and enlisted such clients as Amtrak, Conrail, and the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission. As of July 20, her company has raked in more than $200,000 in fees. "She advises us on how to structure our arguments," says a spokesman for the American Road & Transportation Builders Assn. Meanwhile, she has identified herself in correspondence as assistant treasurer of Shuster's reelection group.
In a May interview, Eppard argued that her work is typical of former Hill staffers. This week, neither she nor Shuster returned numerous calls.