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Pay to Play Law Blog Articles, Resources, Insights on Pay to Play Regulations on the Federal and State Level

Category Archives: New York

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Federal Judge Notes the Implications of McCutcheon in Striking New York’s Limits on Contributions to SuperPACs

Posted in First Amendment, New York

Our last post analyzed the clear implications of the US Supreme Court’s reasoning in McCutcheon v. FEC to pay-to-play laws everywhere. Now, it would appear, at least one federal judge in New York has reluctantly, but decisively, relied upon that same reasoning to strike New York State’s contribution limits for SuperPACs. In that case, New… Continue Reading

Federal Appeals Court Upholds New York City Pay-to-Play Rules

Posted in New York

Through its recent decision in Ognibene v. Parkes, the Second Circuit Court of Appeals has rejected a constitutional challenge of New York City’s political contribution limits on “lobbyists” and others having business dealings with the City (a/k/a the “pay-to-play” rules), finding that such limits do not violate First Amendment free speech rights.

There is DEFINITELY a New Sheriff in Albany – Governor Cuomo Proposes Sweeping Ethics and Pay-to-Play Reform

Posted in New York

Having apparently abandoned all hope of reforming New York’s Congressional delegation, Governor Cuomo has concluded that it’s time to focus on New York State ethics and disclosure. This week, Governor Cuomo announced that he, Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos and Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver had reached a three-way agreement on a substantial ethics reform package. The “Public Integrity Reform Act of 2011″ proposes sweeping changes across a number of ethical disciplines.

Additional Settlements in New York Pension Fund Investigation

Posted in New York, SEC

New York State Attorney General and Governor-Elect Andrew Cuomo has announced additional settlements in his investigation of “pay-to-play” practices and conflicts of interest at public pension funds. Veteran Albany lobbyist Patricia Lynch Associates, Inc. will pay a $500,000 fine and be banned for a period of five years from appearing before the State Comptroller’s Office. The State Comptroller is the sole trustee of New York State’s approximately $133 billion Common Retirement Fund (CRF).

Does Everybody Do It?

Posted in New Jersey, New York

Recently, New York’s Attorney General filed legal pleadings rebutting the assertion that there is nothing inherently wrong with using political connections and favors to secure state contracts because “everybody does it”.

The Perils of Watered Down Reform

Posted in New York

The failure of the New York Assembly to override Governor Patterson’s veto of its much-publicized ethics package highlights the pitfalls facing state legislators seeking to implement less than comprehensive reform.

NY Pay-to-Play Probe Continues

Posted in New York

The latest in New York pay-to-play includes Elliott Broidy, chairman of Markstone Capital Group, pleading guilty to a felony charge of rewarding official misconduct as well as the Attorney General’s investigation implicating former state Comptroller Hevesi.

New York Attorney General Investigates “Pay-to-Play” Donations by Charities

Posted in New York

New York State Attorney General Andrew M. Cuomo has ordered dozens of charities to take back illegal political contributions, or risk losing their tax-exempt status, [the New York Post has reported]. Cuomo has uncovered improper campaign contributions by not-for-profit organizations to New York State lawmakers and New York City council members. Federal and state laws… Continue Reading

Guilty Pleas Announced in Pay-to-Play Cases

Posted in New York

New York Attorney General Andrew M. Cuomo has announced guilty pleas by Raymond Harding, former Chair of the New York State Liberal Party, and Saul Meyer, a founding partner of Aldus Equity, with respect to pay-to-play schemes involving the New York State Common Retirement Fund ("CRF"). Harding admitted to participating in a scheme to corrupt… Continue Reading

Undercover Criminal Investigations Lead to Legislative Changes

Posted in New York

The contentious upcoming criminal trial of former New York City Police Commissioner Bernard Kerik represents an increasingly common willingness among federal and state prosecutors to use criminal “honest services” and corruption statutes to address alleged “pay to play” violations. This case, and others like it, represent the culmination of a conscious decision among the prosecutors and… Continue Reading

State Comptroller Bans Pension Fund Pay to Play

Posted in New York

On September 23, 2009, New York State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli announced a ban on pay-to-play practices related to the $116.5 billion dollar New York State Common Retirement Fund (the “CRF”). The Comptroller issued an Executive Order and Interim Policy that prohibits the CRF from doing business with any outside Investment Adviser within two years… Continue Reading