A powerful Brooklyn councilman is resigning to take a high-paying job at a scandal-tarred nonprofit, and the timing of the move allows him to handpick a successor on the ballot for the upcoming primary.

Borough Park's David Greenfield, chairman of the City Council's Land Use Committee, announced today that he will not seek reelection because he is taking a job as head of the Metropolitan Council on Jewish Poverty.

"This is what I'm passionate about," Greenfield told the Wall Street Journal. "It is, to be frank, my world."

Crain's, which broke the story, noted that because Greenfield filed last week for reelection, his ballot line replacement for September's Democratic primary will be chosen by allies from his campaign, as opposed to a candidate who personally mounted a campaign and collected signatures. Today was the final deadline to perform this switcheroo, and it is now too late for contenders who held back because they were too reluctant to go up against an incumbent to throw their hats into the race.

Good-government advocates decried the maneuver, with Common Cause director Susan Lerner saying in a statement that the resignation allows him to "deny his constituency the right to a competitive election." She continued, "This kind of cynical tactic props up insiders and elites at the expense of voter confidence in our democratic institutions. It's a shame and a schande."

Citing unnamed sources, Crain's said that Greenfield has laid the groundwork to have his protege Kalman Yeger replace him on the ballot. Yeger, meanwhile, has collected signatures to run in a neighboring district. If he withdrew, his campaign operatives too could select a successor.

In a statement to Gothamist, Greenfield said, "The Met Council on Jewish Poverty provides vital services to tens of thousands of New Yorkers. Its direct social services, food distribution, affordable housing programs and network of outstanding Jewish Community Councils are legendary. I was humbled to be asked by the lay-leadership to serve as its next leader, subject to government approval, and am excited about galvanizing this critically important organization to serve our city's neediest for years to come."

An Albany reporter tweeted scuttlebutt suggesting that Republican-allied state Senate Democrat Simcha Felder could run for the open Council seat on the Republican line. Greenfield replaced Felder back in 2010, when Felder left the Council for a job in the Comptroller's Office, prompting a low-turnout special election. Greenfield wrote of Felder on Twitter, "I'm thrilled to support him if he wants to come back from the Senate!"

A spokesman for Greenfield declined to directly address criticism of the timing of his resignation announcement, but pointed to the councilman's speculative support of Felder as evidence that he does not have a favored replacement.

Kalman Yeger's campaign did not immediately respond to a call and email seeking comment. Felder's office did not respond to a voicemail.

The moves are reminiscent of, but not quite as egregious as the 2015 resignation of Bronx district attorney Robert Johnson after his Democratic primary win in the race for reelection. That maneuver, as Johnson departed to take a state Supreme Court judgeship, allowed him to put Darcel Clark in his place as the Democratic nominee. In New York's heavily Democratic districts, this is tantamount to outright picking one's replacement for office, and indeed, Clark won with 93 percent of the vote.

Similarly, U.S. Rep. Joseph Crowley of Queens leapfrogged from the state Assembly to the House in D.C. when Rep. Thomas Manton retired in 1999 after filing for reelection and, on the last possible day, picked Crowley to replace him in the general election.

At the Met Council, Greenfield will replace Met Council director and CEO Alan Schoor. Schoor, in turn, took his post after director William Rapfogel pleaded guilty along with other top Met Council officials to felony charges related to a $9 million embezzlement scam in 2014. Rapfogel was a longtime friend of longtime Assembly speaker Sheldon Silver, who employed his wife Judy Rapfogel as his chief of staff, and who was recently cleared of his corruption conviction on technical grounds. Crain's reports that a Met Council head between Rapfogel and Schoor made over $500,000, suggesting that Greenfield is up for a big raise.