ALBANY – Senator George Borrello issued the following statement following the release of information confirming that Governor Cuomo will net more than $5 million from his book chronicling his leadership of the pandemic in New York State.
“It is disgraceful that Governor Cuomo will personally pocket more than $5 million from his book deal with Crown Publishing Group. That’s five million reasons to hide the truth and mislead the public about the deadly impact of his administration’s decision to return COVID-positive patients to their nursing homes at the beginning of the pandemic.
“This news adds great urgency to the ongoing investigations surrounding this deal. The role that a financial motive played in the nursing home cover up needs to be fully investigated, as do the reports that its development involved the improper use of state staff and resources.
“Despite promising to donate the proceeds to COVID relief, just one-third went to charity. The notion of profiting from a tragedy that took the lives of thousands of New Yorkers is unseemly and an affront to those who lost loved ones to this deadly virus.
“As I said back in March when I introduced legislation, S.5601, to prevent elected officials from publishing books about their leadership in office while still holding that office, this isn’t a free speech issue, it’s an anti-corruption issue. Even if no laws were broken, the glaring conflicts of interest involved here demand action. I urge my colleagues in the Senate to take up my legislation before the end of session so we can give New Yorkers the accountability they deserve in their elected leaders.”