June 18, 2018. This article and corresponding radio clip discusses the bid rigging trial of a former associate of Governor Cuomo and two upstate development firms, who are accused of fraudulently obtaining lucrative taxpayer-funded state contracts, and the currently stalled-in-the-Assembly package of accountability and transparency reform bills. Multiple reform groups, including the Fiscal Policy Institute, want the Assembly to pass the package and restore the State Comptroller’s authority over reviewing the economic development contracts, and enact a public database, known as the “Database of Deals,” of all of the taxpayer funded projects, with information on how much the project costs, the state grants and tax breaks the projects are receiving, and how many jobs are being created.
Ron Deutsch, with the union funded think tank Fiscal Policy Institute, says there are questions about whether the governor’s multi billion dollar statewide economic programs are the best use of taxpayer money.
“We don’t know if a lot of these economic development programs are creating jobs,” Deutsch said.
Here is the article and radio clip from WXXI News.