Sunday, February 22, 2015

Cuomo After Silver's Arrest I See the Reform Light Again 977

Litwin's Glenwood Has Given $800,000 to Cuomo's Campaigns 
Leonard Litwin At the Heart of the Silver Indictment Campaign Money, LLC Shows How Everyone in Corruption Albany, INC, Gets Their Cut
State’s largest campaign donor a client of Silver’s second firm(Capital) Litwin has used 27 different Limited Liability Companies controlled by Glenwood Management to contribute at least $4.3 million to political committees in New York since the beginning of 2013. Five of these L.L.C.s—Briar Hill Realty, L.L.C.; Columbus 60th Realty, L.L.C.; East 46th Realty, L.L.C.; East 81st Realty, L.L.C.; and River York Barclay, L.L.C.—are currently retaining Goldberg & Iryami for challenges to their real property tax assessments, according to data maintained by the New York City Tax Commission.* Developer Leonard Litwin, by most measures New York’s most generous campaign contributor, is a major client of Goldberg & Iryami, the firm whose payments to Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver are reportedly being examined by the FBI.

Mystery “Developer 1″ in Silver case said to beGlenwood’s Leonard Litwin(Real Deal) Federal charges appear to cite state's top political donorThe 100-year-old Litwin spent the most money on political donations during that time, as The Real Deal reported. Crain’s also made a connection between Litwin and the $900,000 Developer 1 paid to eight lobbying firms. The complaint also calls out another developer. Cuomo's biggest donor is also the oldest | Crain's New York ... *  Glenwood Management CEO Leonard Litwin, thebiggest contributor to Governor Andrew Cuomo’s victorious re-election campaign, was also the top donor for the state Senate races. Of the $1.5 million he donated, 79 percent helped Republicans while 9 percent helped Democrats * Developers using loophole to funnel donations to Cuomo  (RealDeal) Glenwood, Extell and others contributing money to governor via LLCs, report shows 

What Do You Do After the Prosecutor Call You a Liar Distract 
Cuomo Plays The Weiner Penis Card
Gov. Cuomo deniesconnection between ending Moreland Commission, Silver charges: (NYDN)  'If Anthony Weiner shows his private parts, do you blame Obama?' 'If Anthony Weiner shows his private parts, do you blame Obama?’ Cuomo said in a New Yorker profile over accusations that he’s somehow to blame for the corruption scandal that led to Sheldon Silver’s resignation as Assembly Speaker.*NY prosecutor basically calls Governor Cuomo a liar (hotaid)* Former Rep. Anthony Weiner and a Cuomo administration spokesman traded barbs on Twitter after Weiner make a joke criticizing Cuomo’s decision to close the subway during a snowstorm in January, the Daily Newswrites:  *Gov. Cuomo Staffer Smacks Down Anthony Weiner on Twitter * Cuomo said he views ethics reform that would require lawmakers to disclose more information about private income as the “single toughest item” he will have to negotiate with legislators, Gannett Albanyreports:

Next: 50 Shades of Cuomo and Weiner Distraction

de Blasio and Cuomo Pay Not Attention To What Were Doing to Elect the Next Speaker

Flashback Mayor-elect Bill de Blasio denies back-room deals inmaneuver to make Melissa Mark-Viverito CityCouncil speaker   (12/13/2013, NYDN)

De Blasio staying out of fight for Assembly speaker(NYP) The city isn’t meddling in Albany’s closed-door power scramble to anoint a new speaker of the Assembly, Mayor de Blasio said Tuesday. During a chat with reporters, the mayor said. “I’m not talking to Assembly members at all,” said de Blasio, dispelling claims by some Albany insiders that he’s been promoting Carl Heastie of The Bronx to replace Silver.“The mayor desperately needs to have a friend in 
Albany,” said one lobbyist who works extensively in the capital. * Phil Reisman: “Twenty-nine days into January and already 2015 is shaping up as an annus horribilis for Gov. Andrew Cuomo. That’s Latin for a bad year.”

Cuomo Pass My Reforms or the Government Closes Down
SpeakerCandidate Carl Heastie Backs ‘First Steps’ Toward Albany Reform(NYO) If he’s elected by his colleagues to be the next speaker, Mr. Heastie vowed he would earn no outside income and would step down as Bronx County Democratic Chairman. He would also require a new dislcosure to account for “every dollar legislators earn outside of public service,” his press release said. And he’d consider making the legislature full-time—and as a result banning outside work. Mr. Heastie, in what a press release said were “first steps” to larger reforms, also promised to create an Office of Ethics and Compliance and to reform the Assmebly’s use of per diem reimbursements, which are meant to cover travel costs. 

Cuomo and Heastie Dancing to Different Reform Tunes
Mr. Heastie’s proposed Office of Ethics and Compliance would be organized by a three-member team of Assembly members who would find its first Executive Director, a person who would not be a lawmaker. As for per diem reform, Mr. Heastie vowed to “introduced new accountability and transparency measures” to the lax reimbursement system. That would include working with state Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli to beef up reporting requirements and oversight.* nNew York Governor Cuomo says he will not sign a budget without ethics reform. * Nolan says she could support term limits for the speaker's office.* Pushing Ethics Reforms, Cuomo Wants Lawmakers to Reveal Income or Lose It (NYT) Declaring that New York’s government faces a crisis of public trust, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo’s proposals include requiring lawmakers to fully disclose their outside income and public financing of campaigns.* Glick On Cuomo: We Didn’t Elect an Emperor(YNN) * UFT Targets Cuomo in New Ad (YNN) * JCOPE released a report detailing suggested changes to the state’s ethics and lobbying laws.* Cuomo’s effort to change teacher tenure rules got some positive attention…in California. *Pushing Ethics Reforms, Cuomo Wants Lawmakers to Reveal Income or Lose It (NYT)

Cuomo using state budget to push ethics reforms
Andrew Cuomo was'totally shocked' by Sheldon Silver's arrest (NYO) Cuomo To Legislature: Pass Ethics Reform In Budget Or Shut Down Gov’t(YNN)Cuomo is proposing a five-point plan that starts with what he said would be the strongest campaign disclosure rules in the nation – including revealing client lists from outside businesses, which he said are not protected, as lawmakers have claimed in court. The governor also called for a constitutional amendment that would end public pensions for elected officials found guilty of wrongdoing, an overhaul of the legislative per diem system, strict new rules prohibiting the personal use of political funds , (including, presumably, using this cash to pay for legal representation, which the governor himself is going), and enactment of a host of campaign finance fixes like closing the LLC loophole, (which he himself has used to great effect), lower contribution limits and creation of a publicly financed campaign system. * Andrew Cuomo was'totally shocked' by Sheldon Silver's arrest (NYO) * Shaken by corruption charges against Silver and other high-profile arrests in recent years, many lawmakers have become critical of JCOPE, questioning whether it has been effective or independent, the Journal reports:  * The delay caused by the Silver scandal could take its toll in the long term this session.* Cuomo’s ex-brother-in-law, Douglas Kennedy: “Does anybody need to tell (the governor) that he’s, you know, finished with national politics right now? He knows it. I mean – it’s just something you know.”* Cuomo Seeks Ethics Reform After Assembly Speaker’s Arrest(NYT)* Cuomo's "scolding tone signaled an abrupt shift for(gov) long known for his accommodating relationship" w lawmakers (NYT) * Cuomo using state budget to push ethics reforms(NYP)* Cuomo: Ethics Reform ‘More Important Than Anything Else’(YNN) * Cuomo said ethics reform is “more important than anything else” this legislative session, and suggested that his push to clean up Albany has nothing to do with his scuttling of the Moreland Commission, State of Politics reports * Reform hypocrites (NYP Ed) With Sheldon Silver out, the Albany air is now full of talk of “reform.” But let’s put this in context: Even after the news that Shelly was under federal investigation, only two people out of 150 in the Assembly spoke out against his continuing as speaker during a roll call vote re-electing him that was itself followed by a standing ovation. Then there’s Gov. Cuomo, now vowing to shut down the government if lawmakers don’t pass his reforms, which include requiring legislators to disclose their outside pay. This wasn’t his stand a year ago, when he shut down the Moreland Commission as part of a budget deal. The commission was knee-capped as lawmakers were fighting its demands they disclose their outside income and clients. The governor closed it in exchange for a tepid array of ethics “reforms” that didn’t go nearly as far as what the governor now tells us is necessary. Yet at the time he pronounced it a “satisfactory conclusion.” Remember, too, that the same governor pitching reform is part of the “three men in a room” culture that circumvents democratic debate and process.* Joint Commission on Public Ethics commissioners want to change rules that prohibit them from releasing investigative findings when no legal violation is found or when they opt not to probe a situation, The Times Union writes The Times Union editorial board writes that Cuomo will encounter resistance to ethics reforms in the Legislature, but they do not have sympathy for him because New York has long been waiting in vain for Albany to clean up its act:* State Senate Finance Chairman John DeFrancisco said Cuomo’s threat to shut down the government if ethics legislation is not in the state budget sets a negative tone for negotiations, State of Politics writes: * The five-point ethics program Cuomo wants in the state budget does not include the closure of the LLC loophole and the establishment of a publicly financed campaign system, the Times Union reports: * Thne TU’s Casey Seiler grapples with whether closing the LLC loophole is part of Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s ethics ultimatum to the Legislature. (Answer: It’s hard to tell, but seems like no).

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