This is from the Albany Times Union.
Four government reform groups want the new Public Integrity Commission to look into Syracuse lawyer Dan French’s alleged lobbying activities.
French is one of the 13 commissioners of the state commission created last month toÂ oversee ethics and lobbying activities, servingÂ for Attorney General Andrew Cuomo.
Because he has represented the Cayuga Indian Nation, which has been trying to resolve land claims with two Finger LakesÂ countiesÂ and build a casino in New York,Â and has been registered as a lobbyist, the groups suspect he may be ineligible for the commission.
French registered so that he could testify before a legislative panelÂ reviewing casino projects in the absence of a Cayuga leader who was taken ill.
His firm is also registered to lobby in Washington, D.C. this year on behalf of the Cayugas.Â
The groups asking Commission Chairman John Feerick to investigate are the Citizens Union of New York, League of Women Voters, New York Public Interest Research Group and Common Cause.
They note that French possesses “impressive credentials”, having served as a U.S. Attorney, but news accounts about French’s work for the Cayugas “raised some questions,” said Russ Haven, the attorney for NYPIRG.
“We don’t have independent information on this other than what’s been in the media reports,” he said. “Maybe it could be cleared up. It’s worth a look, particularly since the new commission’s just starting out. It should remove any questions in the air.”
French had no immediate response.
And more evidence of this sloppy relationship between Spitzer, the commission and their poor work is written about here. Troopergate Probe Skepticism Greets New Integrity Panel.
The vetting process for candidates should be squeaky clean.