© 2024 WRVO Public Media
NPR News for Central New York
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

NY attorney general raids office of lobbyist at SUNY Poly

Credit SUNY Polytechnic
SUNY Polytechnic Institute in Albany

Probes deepened into alleged corruption by former associates of Gov. Andrew Cuomo and former members of his administration, as the attorney general’s office conducted a raid at SUNY Polytechnic Institute offices in Albany Thursday afternoon.

A spokesman for SUNY Poly says the college “cooperated fully” with New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman’s request to search an office. SUNY Poly confirms that the office had until recently been used by one of two people that Cuomo administration officials have acknowledged are a target of a federal probe, lobbyist Todd Howe. Howe, who is close to the Cuomo family, represented numerous developers and other companies that were competing for or awarded contracts in big upstate development projects, including the Buffalo Billion.

SUNY Poly, through third party entities, arranged for the contracts for many of the development projects.

Since subpoenas were issued by federal prosecutors in late April, Cuomo and his staff have cut off all contact with Howe. Until recently, Howe was employed by a subsidiary of Albany law firm Whiteman, Osterman and Hannah. But he has since been removed from his post.

A source with knowledge of the investigation says the AG’s probe is part of a broader investigation into SUNY Poly’s bidding process and its relationship with various players and developers. 

The Albany Times Union reported earlier this month that the attorney general was looking into potential bid-rigging in the proposed building of a new dormitory near the SUNY Polytechnic and SUNY Albany campuses.

Karen DeWitt is Capitol Bureau Chief for New York State Public Radio, a network of 10 public radio stations in New York State. She has covered state government and politics for the network since 1990.