Daily Archives: December 21, 2011

Maggie Brooks Responds to News About DA Mike Green

Monroe County Executive Maggie Brooks said she was surprised to learn that District Attorney Mike Green would not be re-nominated for a federal judgeship.
Brooks said Green would have been a good fit for the position, but added that she does not believe his claim that local Republicans somehow interfered with his nomination process.

“I think to suggest that any local Republican has more clout in Washington than Chuck Schumer or the president himself is a little bit laughable. I mean, I’m not sure any local Republicans would have that kind of clout. There were many of us who supported Mike and I’m sorry it didn’t work out for him,” said Brooks.

Green did not run for re-election during the nomination process. His last day as District Attorney is December 31st.

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JCOPE Meets In Public, Then Behind Closed Doors

The new Joint Commission on Public Ethics got off to a rocky start today as the 14-member panel met for the first time and was immediately questioned on why it was going into executive session to hold part of its meeting behind closed doors.

And that was after board member Ravi Batra, an attorney and controversial pick for the commission by Senate Minority Leader John Sampson, said it was using his $300 stipend for the day to help give a $1,000 donation to the Squash Hunger charitable group based in Troy.

“Keep up the good work,” Batra said, as he handed the check—a rare scene for an ethics panel—to the charity’s executive director, Amy Klein.

The commission, known as JCOPE, then proceeded through its administrative tasks. They plan to put together a search panel for a new executive director, plan to meet at least once a month and will develop a code of conduct.

As they moved to head into executive session, Associated Press reporter Michael Gormley asked for an explanation as to why the board was headed into private session, citing the state’s Open Meetings Law.

The outgoing executive director, Barry Ginsberg, explained that JCOPE—like former state ethics panels—is exempt from the Open Meetings Law and the Freedom of Information law.

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Reed named a negotiator in political dispute over payroll-tax extension

U.S. Rep. Tom Reed announced he has been named by House Speaker John Boehner as one of eight House negotiators on a House-Senate conference committee charged with resolving the differences between the House-passed one-year payroll tax relief extension and the Senate-passed, 60 day extension.

Reed said in a release that he and fellow negotiators remain in Washington to serve in a House/Senate conference committee to reach an agreement.

“I am honored to be named as one of the House negotiators,” stated Reed, whose district includes Yates, most of Ontario and portions of Monroe counties. “I am ready and waiting to get to work on a long-term solution for hardworking taxpayers.”

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