There’s more trouble for former Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who resigned on Monday amid several scandals including a report by Attorney General Tish James that he sexually harassed 11 women.
On Thursday, the Joint Commission on Public Ethics, or JCOPE, voted to ask James to probe an alleged illegal leak by the commission to Cuomo.
The discussions during JCOPE’s executive sessions are supposed to be confidential. But two commissioners said Cuomo somehow found out that the panel— where he held the majority of appointees—wanted to open a corruption investigation into Cuomo’s former aide, Joe Percoco.
Percoco is now in federal prison after being convicted of running a bribery and kickback scheme.
The motion to involve the attorney general was brought by Gary Lavine, appointed by the Republican Senate minority leader.
Julie Garcia, a former commissioner appointed by Speaker Carl Heastie, has said that she was told by an Assembly lawyer that Cuomo called the speaker to complain about her private vote.
Another JCOPE commissioner appointed by Heastie, James Yates, has said he was a witness to the leak, and has texts, emails and other documentation to back up his claim.
The state’s inspector general, also appointed by Cuomo, investigated the matter at the time but did not interview the former governor or Heastie. Nevertheless, the report concluded that the leak accusation could not be substantiated.