Saturday, October 19, 2013

A False Light on Corruption: The Moreland Commission

Governor Andrew Cuomo's lack of concern for, and/or knowledge of, New York State's informed citizens  on the issue of public corruption shows when he appointed members of his inner circle to The Moreland Commission.

The Moreland Commission became a joke. What Cuomo wanted to do is glorify himself by setting up a panel to hear about how wonderful he was, and instead, he heard the opposite. I doubt that any more hearings will be scheduled, and I think that Cuomo should admit he was misinformed about the anger and frustration in New York State against the public corruption which is rampant under his watch. People know that Cuomo is not above the other public officials, but is just as corrupt as any of them. Cuomo is, afterall, part of The Family, documented so well by Tom Fitton in his Corruption Chronicles..

Betsy Combier

Off the leash 

Gov. Cuomo's anti-corruption commission shows some teeth

Comments (1)


Time to play hardball.

Just when Gov. Cuomo’s anti-corruption commission seemed a dying quail, its leaders barraged the state’s major political parties with subpoenas — on top of issuing demands for information from the Legislature.
What explains the sudden show of aggression? You connect the dots.
Dot 1: Cuomo and Attorney General Eric Schneiderman create the Commission to Investigate Public Corruption, with the governor declaring that the panel would be an “independent” force, free to pursue all leads — including any that lead to his desk.
Dot 2: Daily News Albany Bureau Chief Kenneth Lovett reveals that the commission is not so independent after all. Sources tell Lovett that it dropped certain subpoenas under pressure from Cuomo’s top aides.
Dot 3: The shelved subpoenas include one aimed at the state Democratic Party’s “housekeeping” account, which had financed ads promoting the governor’s agenda. In one case, the commission actually delivers a subpoena to the Democrats’ ad-buying firm, then pulls it back.
Dot 4: Reform-minded voices, including this page, warn Cuomo that back-room meddling risks trashing the commission’s credibility — and ruining this generation’s last, best shot at cleaning up Albany.
Dot 5: In a meeting with the Daily News Editorial Board, Cuomo acknowledges that the panel is not truly independent since it answers to him and uses staff borrowed from his office. He also says that he was concerned only that all subpoenas approved by the commission’s co-chairs — Nassau District Attorney Kathleen Rice, Syracuse DA William Fitzpatrick and former federal prosecutor Milton Williams — would be legally defensible.
“If a subpoena is challenged — or the authority of the commission is challenged — and the commission loses, you go to a very bad place right away,” he said, adding that subpoenas were going out.
Dot 6 : A few hours later, the commission announces a unanimous vote to subpoena the “housekeeping” records after all — and not just from the Democrats, but also from the Republican, Conservative and Working Families parties, plus the housekeeping accounts controlled by legislative leaders.
“The meeting was like turning over a new leaf, a fresh start,” one insider told Lovett.
Sunlight brought a not-so-pretty picture into useful focus. Cuomo should stand back and let it stay that way.

Andrew Cuomo's Announcement He Was setting Up The Moreland Commission

NYS Governor introducing The Moreland Commission

NYC Moreland Commission on Public Corruption September 17, 2013

Testimony of Attorney Mark A. Sacha at The Moreland Commission

Governor Cuomo on NY Utility Companies

Will Galison's Interview With Moreland Commission Member John Amodeo AKA "John Owens"

Testimony of Elena Sassower at the Moreland Commission public meeting

Testimony of Will Galison at The Moreland Commission

Will Galison's attempted interview with Moreland Commission member Regina Calcaterra

From Elena Sassower:
Has the Commission to Investigate Public Corruption shut down public hearings because of conflicts of interest?

According to the terse October 15th “Statement From Moreland Commission Co-Chairs”, the Commission “will continue its mandate of investigating corruption…holding public hearings…”

When might those next “public hearings” be?   

Is the reason the Commission is NOT holding “public hearings” because they expose conflicts of interest of Commission members, advisors, and staff?  To date, the Commission has afforded the public only an hour and a half at a single public hearing – the Manhattan hearing – to testify as to the breadth of public corruption within its knowledge and experience.

The Commission’s conflicts of interest were highlighted by my testimony at the Commission’s September 17th Manhattan hearing and by the testimony of Mark Sacha at the Commission’s September 24th Albany hearing, to which I gave audible comment from the audience.    The video clips, as well as the full hearings, are here:

Attached is my October 17th letter to Commission members and special advisors on the subject.  It is posted, with my prior correspondence to the Commission, most importantly, my August 5th  and October 4th letters, here: .

I am available to answer your questions and to be interviewed.

Thank you.

Elena Sassower, Director
Center for Judicial Accountability, Inc. (CJA)
Cell: 646-220-7987

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