In 1975, Rep. Daniel J. Flood (D-Pa.) reported receiving $1,000 in campaign funds and an honorarium of undisclosed amount from B'nai Torah Institue, a controversial, fast-growing, multimillion-dollar New York community service agency.
B'nai Torah is an organization the Pennyslvania Democrat is accused of having helped get federal grants.
Late last year, four former B'nai Torah officials were convicted of charges arising out of frauds in their running of B'nai Torah summer food programs financed by Agriculture Department funds.
At present, the U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York is investigating possible criminal charges arising out of B'nai Torah's Labor Department programs, according to a Labor Department official.
Investigations into B'nai Torah's food programs, which by 1976 were operation in five states and cost $5.5 million, are continuing.
In January, Stephen Elko, Flood's former chief aide, alleged that Rabbi Leib Pinter, chairman of B'nai Torah, paid about $10,000 to Flood between 1974 and 1976.
Elko's charges were contained in a government affidavit filed after the Flood aide had been convicted on bribery and perjury.
The money, according to Elko, was for Flood's help with the Labor Department in connection with B'nai Torah's seeking funds for a training program for Soviet Jewish immigrants to the United States.
In 1975, Labor approved $1.2 million for the B'nai Toran immigrant training program.
Government and Capitol Hill [WORD ILLEGIBLE] allege Flood wrote the Labor Department pushing its approval.
Yesterday, Al Albert, Labor's assistant general counsel, said the New York U.S. attorney has "instructed [WORD ILLEGIBLE] not to discuss" any Flood letters [WORD ILLEGIBLE] calls about B'nai Torah because "of possible criminal overtones."
A spokesman for Flood said yesterday the veteran congressman "denies any impropriety" with regard to any letters he may have sent government officials in support of B'nai Torah and restated his previous denial of "any wrongdoing."
"In view of the allegations about B'nai Torah," the Flood spokesman said, Flood would have "no further comment."
In December 1975, after the Soviet immigrant had been approved, B'nai Torah honored Flood with its public service award.
Flood's campaign fund reports, filed with the Clerk of the House in 1975, showed six contributions received on April 18 of that year.
One of the contributions, for $150, was listed as coming from Rabbi Pinter. Four others, totaling $700, were from individuals who were associated with B'nai Torah summer food programs.
The sixth contribution was listed in the name of George L. Ribowsky, a businessman whose Hi-Score company was a chief vendor to B'nai Torah food programs not only in New York but also in New Jersey, Chicago and St. Louis.
Attempts to contact Pinter, Ribowsky and the other contributors were unsuccessful.
A government official familiar with the Flood case said last week that it is possible the $10.000 Elke alleged Pinter passed to Flood may be covered by the reports of the campaign contributions and the honorarium.
The government affidavit said Flood had gotten $7,000 and Elko $3,000.
As chairman of the House appropriations subcommittee that handled funds for the Department of Health, Education and Welfare and Labor and for the Community Services Administration. Flood had a powerful voice in how poverty program funds in those agencies could be distributed.
Justice Department investigators are now looking into allegations that Flood was paid to intervene with federal agencies.
With the aid of federal funds, many small institutions ballooned in size handling programs for the poor.
B'nai Torah was such an organization. Beginning in 1972, the small religious school grew into a major operation thanks to federal, state and local poverty program funds.
Its summer feeding program, which began in New York metropolitan area in 1972, had spread three years later into five states. By 1976, it was funded at a $12 million level.
That year however, Rep. Elizabeth Holtzman (D-N.Y.) criticized the program and the Agriculture Department conducted an audit.
The department canceled the program in 1977.