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NYCOM lawyer says he did not tell Kingston officials to file complaint with AG

Jul 15, 2020 6:15 am
Ariél Zangla is reporting for the Daily Freeman an attorney for the New York Conference of Mayors has denied advising any lawmakers from the city of Kingston to file an ethics complaint against Mayor Steve Noble with the state Attorney General's Office. "As an outside advisor and not involved directly with this issue, I do not have enough information or all of the surrounding facts and alleged circumstances to even suggest making a referral to an investigatory agency," John Mancini, counsel for NYCOM, wrote in an email. The email, obtained by the Freeman, was addressed to Common Council President Andrea Shaut and city Corporation Counsel Kevin Bryant. It referenced the Freeman's July 12 story about an investigation of Steve and Julie Noble being requested by Shaut, council Majority Leader Reynolds Scott-Childress, Alderperson Jeffrey Ventura Morell and Alderperson Rita Worthington, all Democrats. Ventura Morell said taking the group's concerns to the state Attorney General's Office was one of four options offered by NYCOM. He said the others were going to the state police, the Ulster County district attorney or to the city Ethics Board. The group felt the attorney general was best equipped to conduct a neutral investigation, Ventura Morell said. The majority leader said the four lawmakers, who have not provided specific details of the alleged misconduct to the public, were reacting to information that was brought to their attention by community members who had filed Freedom of Information requests with the city. The four lawmakers said in a press release July 10, that such concerns would normally be referred to the city's ethics board, but because Kingston's board is appointed by the mayor, there was a potential conflict of interest, so they chose to go to the Attorney General's Office. Read the full story in the Daily Freeman.