Watchdogs Formally Ask NYS Ethics Commission to Investigate Cuomo $5 Million Book Deal, Fix Own Rules to Prevent Future Abuse

Full Ethics Commission Should Be Required to Approve Outside Income Requests For
Statewide Officials — Delegating to Staff a Bad Idea

In a letter to the NYS State Commission on Ethics and Lobbying in Government, watchdog groups submitted a formal complaint regarding former Governor Cuomo’s $5 million book deal, asking that the Commission:

  1. Undertake a review of the approval and decision-making process by the Joint Commission on Public Ethics (JCOPE) of former Governor Andrew Cuomo’s contract with Penguin Random House Crown Publishing Group; and
  2. Determine whether the former Governor complied with JCOPE’s requirements that were conditions of its approval of the book deal.

The groups also urged the Commission to change its rules to require the approval of the full Commission for all opinions regarding statewide officials and agency heads.  

The full letter is available here and below.

Blair Horner, New York Public Interest Research Group, 518-436-0876 x257
Ben Weinberg, Citizens Union, 347-291-4199
Susan Lerner, Common Cause/NY, 212-691-6421
Rachael Fauss, Reinvent Albany, 518-859-5307