Spin Cycle

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In the latest volley over financial disclosure, Suffolk County Executive Steve Levy, from within legislative crosshairs, calls for a "comprehensive review" of "disclosure of all public officials, including legislators."

The Democrat-turned-Repubican states in a letter released today to P.O. William Lindsay, "Over the last several years, there have been a number of instances where legislators have engaged in conduct that might be considered as being conflicted, and yet there was nver any effort by the Legislature to investigate these matters."

He cites a "cursory review" of financial disclosure forms of lawmakers showing "that not all of the requirements of the financial disclosure process were being followed."

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Questions around Levy's own filing practices have prompted him to essentially suggest hypocrisy by legislative finger-pointers. So as his letter ticks off (we're quoting here):

"-- A legislator’s spouse is employed by or contracts with an employer to which that legislator provides member item money. Should there be a need to report this on one’s form?
-- Three of the members of the Review Committee filed late. One of the five legislators overall who filed late was almost a month beyond the date the forms were due.
-- A legislator recently introduced legislation that would provide interest payments to contract agencies where the County does not pay within 30 days. The legislator’s significant other is a lobbyist for these contract agencies and had been advocating herself for the passage of this resolution. The legislator never disclosed this information to the Legislature.
-- A legislator whose wife works for the nursing home continuously spoke out against the closure or the sale of the facility. He went so far as to introduce a bill that would impede the ability of the County to transfer the facility.
-- Two legislators introduced legislation to hire their relatives where they may have been required to refrain from sponsoring such measures.
-- A county official withheld from public view information regarding his family source of income. Should something as significant as one’s source of income be withheld from the public?"



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