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New York Ethics Panel Orders Cuomo To Forfeit $5.1 Million In Book Profits

Courtesy of ZeroHedge View original post here.

NY Gov. Andrew Cuomo has kept a low profile these past few months since finally being forced from the Governor’s mansion in Albany. But hopefully he has been using at least some of this time to look for a new job, because the State of New York – Cuomo’s former employer – is about to ask for a hefty chunk of change.

According to the New York Post, the state’s ethics watchdog – the Joint Commission on Public Ethics – voted a 12 to 1 to demand that Cuomo pay to the state the $5.1 million advance he received from his publisher for Cuomo’s pandemic memoir entitled “American Crisis: Leadership Lessons from the COVID-19 Pandemic”.

The panel had previously voted to allow the then-governor to earn money outside of his government work, but one month ago, they voted to rescind this approval, potentially opening the former governor up to restitution payments.

The former governor also got into hot water with AG Letitia James and his fellow Dems in Albany for using his staffers and other public resources to do research for the book.

The resolution, drafted by commissioner David McNamara, a Senate Republican appointee, claimed that Cuomo now “lacked the legal authority to engage in outside activity and receive compensation in regard to the book” since JCOPE rescinded its approval.

“Gov. Cuomo is not legally entitled to retain compensation…for any form of outside activity related to the book,” McNamara continued.

Instead of allowing Cuomo to keep the money (which he probably could use right about considering the non-stop legal battles he will likely be facing in the coming years), the panel decided that the proceeds from the book (including whatever sales it manages to generate since becoming a gag gift/punchline after Cuomo’s fall from grace) should be turned over to the state AG’s office. After all, it was her office that substantiated the slew of accusations leveled against the governor.

Cuomo’s lawyer claimed JCOPE’s action was illegal, and claimed he would challenge it in court on the (former) governor’s behalf.

“JCOPE’s actions today are unconstitutional, exceed its own authority and appear to be driven by political interests rather than the facts and the law,” said Cuomo attorney Jim McGuire.

“Should they seek to enforce this action, we’ll see them in court.”

Of course, the real story here – if this is, indeed, true – is that consumers are still buying copies of the governor’s book.

Perhaps they’re longing for the good old days when the US was still in lockdown, and most Americans expected this all to be over by the holidays.


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