A leading government reform group has some advice for Governor Cuomo’s Moreland Act Commission investigations. They say there's a major loophole that has allowed $98 million dollars in unlimited donations to flow into what’s known as party housekeeping accounts.
A political controversy involving the issue of abortion has erupted this summer at the state’s ethics commission. It stems from whether some not-for-profit groups should be granted exemptions from publicly disclosing their donors.
The Joint Commission on Public Ethics, known as JCOPE, is charged with increasing financial transparency when it comes to politicians and the groups who lobby them.
A new poll finds most New Yorkers are ashamed of the candidacies of Anthony Weiner and Eliot Spitzer for Mayor and Comptroller of New York City. The Siena College poll also finds that Governor Cuomo, in contrast, is enjoying a minor rebound with voters.
Cuomo’s name is frequently mentioned as a possible Presidential contender in 2016, that is if former First Lady and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton doesn’t run. But the governor first has to think about an earlier date 2014 and his re election race, and how to shore up his support in upstate, where he’s been flagging in the polls.
During the past several weeks, Governor Cuomo has spent much of his time in upstate New York.
He paddled in a whitewater rafting contest he organized in the Adirondacks, to boost tourism.
New Yorkers have a chance to vote this November on whether there should be more gambling in the state. Those who treat people with gambling addictions say it will likely result in more problem gamblers.
The New York Council on Problem Gambling is a not for profit, affiliated with the state agency on alcohol and drug abuse. It coordinates and publicizes treatments for New Yorkers with gambling addictions.
Test scores for third through eighth graders were released Wednesday, and they show a dramatic drop in the number of New York students who received passing grades.
Less than one third of students in the third through eighth grades, around 31%, passed the new math and English exams given for the first time this year, says Regents Chancellor Merrill Tisch, making the announcement on a conference call.
“As anticipated, the scores we are announcing today are significantly lower,” Tisch said.
The co-chair of Governor Cuomo’s Moreland Act Commission on public corruption, Nassau County District Attorney Kathleen Rice, says subpoenas have been sent out and more public hearings are planned. Rice was at the Capitol for the third private meeting of Governor Cuomo’s Moreland Act Commission. She says several subpoenas have been issued, but they have to be kept secret for now so that the ongoing investigations won’t be jeopardized.
Governor Cuomo recently announced that he would close several more state prisons, using provisions of a law that allows him to bypass the legislature. It’s part of a pattern of government consolidation that the governor has been quietly pursuing since he took office.
The City of Detroit’s declaration of bankruptcy has left some in New York wondering whether any upstate cities will be next. State officials say they are trying to help with financial planning guidance, but local governments say more needs to be done.
State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli has created a fiscal stress monitoring system that measures the financial health of New York’s local governments. A preliminary report found two dozen cities, counties and villages are moderately to severely fiscally stressed. DiNapoli say he hopes they can avoid the fate of Detroit.
In the summer of 2008, then Governor David Paterson and the legislature imposed an actual moratorium in New York on the gas drilling process known as hydrofracking. After it expired, Governor Cuomo’s environmental agency began an extended review. That study has never been completed. For the past 10 months, a decision has been put on hold while Governor Cuomo’s health commissioner conducts what he says is a health review. No details have been revealed.
Brian Sampson, with the pro-business group Unshackle Upstate, calls it “paralysis by analysis.”
“It’s very disingenuous to the people to say that here we are five years later and we haven’t been able to make a decision,” Sampson said.