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Fiscal watchdog group takes legal action over Cuomo, Hochul raises

Dec 13, 2019 1:30 pm
Chris Bragg is reporting for the Times Union the Government Justice Center has filed a lawsuit on behalf of Robert Arrigo, leader of the Saratoga County Libertarian Party, in state Supreme Court in Albany arguing the raises given to Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Lt. Gov. Kathy Hochul this year were were illegal. The lawsuit also seeks to stop additional pay hikes the pair is scheduled to receive in 2020 and 2021. The Justice Center named Comptroller Tom DiNapoli as the respondent because his office paid the allegedly illegal increased salaries. The case is based on the provision in the state constitution that says salaries of state officers, such as the governor and lieutenant governor, “shall not be increased or diminished during the term for which he or she shall have been elected or appointed.” Cuomo and Hochul won re-election in November 2018. The resolution was passed the following April, with the pay raises retroactive to Jan. 1, the day they began their new terms. The plaintiff argues that an Assembly and Senate joint resolution that raises these salaries cannot go into effect until Jan. 1, 2023, after the next gubernatorial election cycle. The Albany-based Government Justice Center is a fiscally conservative nonprofit. Its mission is to “protect taxpayers from government waste, negligence, misappropriation and other improper actions.” Read the full story in the Times Union.
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