On April 29th, a New York City newspaper reported that “[a] former top aide and several others close to Gov. Cuomo are being probed by the Manhattan U.S. Attorney’s office for potential improper lobbying and undisclosed conflicts of interests involving an Orange County power plant and Cuomo’s signature “Buffalo Billion” economic development program.”
Shortly after, the Governor’s office issued a statement acknowledging that “the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District has an ongoing investigation focused in Upstate New York (commonly referred to as the Buffalo Billion and Nano investigation),” and indicating that the that the Governor “has ordered an immediate full review of the program” by Bart Schwartz, an independent investigator who has served as Chief of the Criminal Division of the U.S. Attorney’s office for the Southern District of New York.
The focus of the investigation appears to be some of Gov. Cuomo’s closest confidants. The question, with the Legislature going into the final weeks of the 2016 session, is how widespread the problems are, and whether the investigation leads to the Governor himself.