Thursday, January 22, 2015

Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver to Be Arrested on Corruption Charges Today


Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver - widely credited as the man who is keeping any and all MMA bills from getting a floor vote in the State Assembly - is expected to be arrested on corruption charges today. The charges stem from an investigation conducted by federal authorities on Speaker Silver's finances. Here's the New York Times with the skinny:

Federal authorities are expected to arrest Sheldon Silver, the powerful speaker of the New York State Assembly, on corruption charges on Thursday, people with knowledge of the matter said. The case is likely to throw Albany into disarray at the beginning of a new session.
The investigation that led to the expected charges against Mr. Silver, a Democrat from the Lower East Side of Manhattan who has served as speaker for more than two decades, began after Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo in March abruptly shut down an anticorruption commission he had created in 2013.
Details of the specific charges to be brought against Mr. Silver were unclear on Wednesday night, but one of the people with knowledge of the matter said they stemmed from payments that Mr. Silver received from a small law firm that specializes in seeking reductions of New York City real estate taxes. The total amount of the payments was unclear, but another person has said they were substantial and were made over several years.
This is, obviously, a big deal, as it upsets the status quo that has kept MMA on legislative ice for years. But  arresting Speaker Silver means little in terms of getting rid of the closed-door Democratic conference where the MMA bill dies every year; he retains his job until he's convicted of a felony.

So save your rejoicing. Things might be shaken up a bit, but it's too soon to tell how much and how MMA in New York will be affected.

No comments: