Perdido 03

Perdido 03

Thursday, June 2, 2016

Corrupt Lobbyist Was Member Of Cuomo's "Team"

That corrupt lobbyist that Andrew Cuomo claims he doesn't know much about even though he was the hand model for Mario's portrait?

Turns out he's on Andrew's "team":

In the weeks since lobbyist Todd Howe emerged as a focus of federal and state investigations into New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo's economic-development efforts, the governor has sought to distance himself from Mr. Howe and ordered the state to cut all ties with him.

Emails reviewed by The Wall Street Journal and interviews with people close to the administration indicate that, for years, Mr. Howe was in touch with Mr. Cuomo’s trusted circle, a status that gave him a central place behind the scenes with many of the people, institutions and projects that are now under scrutiny.

In an email from August illustrating how Mr. Howe held sway with the most important members in Mr. Cuomo’s orbit, Mr. Howe told one of the governor's top aides, Jim Malatras, that SUNY Polytechnic President Alain Kaloyeros “didn’t like it yesterday when I told him to get his ass over to the office and he was going to sign off on that statement you provided.”

“He’s on our team and he knows it,” Mr. Malatras replied to Mr. Howe after the two described shared frustrations with Mr. Kaloyeros. “He’s gotta…stop seeing enemies in our camp. There are none.”


Emails exchanged among Mr. Howe, members of the Cuomo administration, SUNY Polytechnic officials and employees of Whiteman Osterman & Hanna, a prominent Albany law firm that represented SUNY Polytechnic, show Mr. Howe served as a vital line between the governor’s office and people involved in projects tied to SUNY.

Mr. Howe was head of the law firm’s now-closed lobbying arm and served as a consultant for SUNY Polytechnic.

In one March 2014 email exchange reviewed by the Journal, Mr. Howe appeared to joke with a Cuomo administration official about his role as a “minder” dispatched by the governor’s office to keep tabs on Mr. Kaloyeros and SUNY Polytechnic.

On SUNY Polytechnic matters, Mr. Howe also emailed and met with Andrew Kennedy, deputy director of state operations for policy, and Peter Cutler, a former spokesman for Empire State Development, the state’s economic development agency, according to emails and interviews. Mr. Cutler has said he was subpoenaed in the federal investigation. Messrs. Kennedy and Cutler didn’t respond to requests for comment.

In the August email exchange about Mr. Kaloyeros, Mr. Malatras told Mr. Howe, “I don’t like the governor being disrespected.”

“Agree,” Mr. Howe wrote. “Not to reward bad behavior but you should think of something for him to do that builds him back up after this episode and boxes him in. Trust me I agree with you 100% but if this guy goes under [during] our watch we’ll get killed.”

For a guy Cuomo doesn't know much about, Howe sure was around in a lot of the office communications, wasn't he?

Howe's "office" at SUNY Polytechnic was raided by investigators last week - you can bet they're looking very closely at the connections between Howe, Alain Kaloyeros, Jim Malatras, Andrew Kennedy, Peter Cutler and the rest of Governor Andrew Cuomo's "team" too.

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