Janet DiFiore Tag All blog entries tagged as Janet DiFiore http://www.gothamgazette.com/index.php/the-eye-opener/latest Sun, 13 Jul 2014 18:06:47 +0000 Joomla! 1.5 - Open Source Content Management en-gb Cuomo Appoints Inspector General After 14-Month Vacancy http://www.gothamgazette.com/index.php/the-eye-opener/entry/state/2013/05/02/cuomo-appoints-inspector-general-after-14-month-vacancy http://www.gothamgazette.com/index.php/the-eye-opener/entry/state/2013/05/02/cuomo-appoints-inspector-general-after-14-month-vacancy The 14-month wait for a new state inspector general is over.

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Gov. Andrew Cuomo appointed Catherine Leahy Scott to the position today. Scott had been acting inspector general.

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The vacancy at the IG's office was created when Cuomo appointed then-IG Ellen Biben as executive director of the Joint Commission on Public Ethics — a move that cause some to question whether JCOPE was actually independent of the executive branch. Biben worked for Cuomo during his time as attorney general.

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It just so happens that Biben is now officially stepping down in her position at JCOPE to pursue work in the private sector. Biben's departure from JCOPE comes on the heels of the resignation of JCOPE Chair and Westchester County District Attorney Janet DiFiore. DiFiore left to pursue her reelection bid.

JCOPE has had more than its share of troubles since coming into existence last year. Its biggest case so far has languished as its report about the Assemblyman Vito Lopez scandal has remained out of public sight thanks to a request from the Staten Island district attorney, who is reviewing whether to bring criminal charges against Lopez.

JCOPE recently issued a statement threatening to make their report public if the Staten Island district attorney's office didn't start moving quickly.

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dking@gothamgazette.com (David Howard King) State Thu, 02 May 2013 19:49:26 +0000
Cuomo Appoints New JCOPE Chair as DiFiore Resigns http://www.gothamgazette.com/index.php/the-eye-opener/entry/state/2013/04/22/cuomo-appoints-new-jcope-chair-as-difiore-resigns- http://www.gothamgazette.com/index.php/the-eye-opener/entry/state/2013/04/22/cuomo-appoints-new-jcope-chair-as-difiore-resigns- The state ethics panel tasked with policing corruption in Albany has a new chairman.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo has appointed Daniel J. Horowitz as chair of the Joint Commission On Public Ethics. He replaces Westchester County District Attorney Janet DiFiore, who resigned and is preparing for her relection campaign in November.

The apointment of DiFiore, an elected official who raised compaign cash, as JCOPE chair, created a fair bit of controversy.

Politics on the Hudson pointed out that DiFiore's fundraising took off after her appointment as JCOPE chair. A number of those contributions came from elected officials.

A JCOPE spokesman told Politics on the Hudson at the time that they were vigilant about who they accepted cash from and that DiFiore would return money. “If someone raises something that gets by and it’s appropriate, then the money would be returned," the spokesman said.

JCOPE members are not banned from accepting political contributions but its statute does prevent members “from making, or soliciting from other persons, any contributions to candidates for election to the offices of governor, lieutenant governor, member of the assembly or the senate, attorney general or state comptroller.”

Horowitz praised Cuomo and DiFiore in a statement: "I want to thank Governor Cuomo for the opportunity to serve as chairman and to continue the commission's critical mission of restoring public confidence in our state government. I am honored to be able to help build on the progress made under the leadership of District Attorney Janet DiFiore, and look forward to working with my fellow Commissioners towards a government based on integrity and public service that all New Yorkers can be proud of.”

JCOPE's new chair Horowitz was appointed to JCOPE by Cuomo in December of 2011 and is currently a partner at Lankler Carragher & Horwitz, LLP. He previously served as New York County asistant district attorney for a decade.

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dking@gothamgazette.com (David Howard King) State Mon, 22 Apr 2013 18:30:51 +0000