HYDE PARK, NY – Senator Sue Serino, Ranking Member of the State Senate’s Aging Committee, released the following statement in response to news that disgraced Governor Andrew Cuomo must return proceeds from his pandemic book deal:
“Every penny that the disgraced former Governor profited off of New Yorkers’ pain should be directed to the victims of his dangerous pandemic policies, like the many families who lost loved ones in New York’s nursing homes. While no amount of money will ever bring these residents back, I urge Attorney General James to take this opportunity to put these misbegotten funds to work to acknowledge their pain, and to send a strong message to New Yorkers that no public official should be able to leverage their office to personally profit off the backs of those they serve.
For those of us who have spent months pushing for accountability, today’s JCOPE decision is a step in the right direction. However, the Commission remains deeply flawed, and through its inaction on this issue, the Legislature has remained complicit in allowing its pervasive dysfunction to continue.
We will not stop pushing for the full transparency, answers, justice and accountability that these families, and all New Yorkers, deserve.”
In March of this year, Senators Serino and George Borrello brought a motion before the Senate’s Aging Committee that would have required former JCOPE Chair and Cuomo appointee, Camille Joseph Varlack, to testify before the committee in relation to the Commission’s approval of the book deal. The motion to subpoena Varlack was denied by the Aging Committee Chair.