Vito Lopez

The legislative session begins with the New York State Assembly still plagued by sexual harassment scandals.  Seven women have now accused a Buffalo-area assemblyman of sexual harassment.

Assemblyman Dennis Gabryszak , of Cheektowaga, has now been accused of sexual harassment  by a seventh woman. Another assemblyman, Micah Kellner, of Manhattan , has been censured by the Assembly Ethics Committee for alleged sexual harassment.

The state ethics board held its final meeting of the year, and announced no major decisions or initiatives. Critics say that’s normal for the controversial Joint Commission on Public Ethics (JCOPE), and they say that’s part of the problem.

Metropolitan Council on Jewish Poverty

There’s more bad news for people with ties to Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver. The husband of a top aide to the speaker has been fired from his job at a top New York City not for profit and is under criminal investigation by the state attorney general.  

Attorney General Eric Schneiderman has confirmed that his office has launched a criminal probe of William Rapfogel, CEO of the Metropolitan Council on Jewish Poverty, one of New York City’s largest human services agencies.

A new poll finds a slim majority of voters think Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver should step down from his leadership post, following two reports that were critical of his handling of a sexual harassment case.

Assemblyman Vito Lopez has already resigned and is facing record fines for allegedly sexually harassing four women on his staff. Speaker Silver was criticized in an ethics report and a report by the Staten Island District Attorney for initially mishandling the accusations. Silver has apologized.

One day after the state’s powerful Assembly speaker admitted “glaring failures” in his handling of a sexual abuse case, the Albany establishment seemed to be moving on, with the usual round of press conferences, bill passage, and leaders meetings.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is calling on Assemblyman Vito Lopez, the subject of a scathing ethics commission report on sexual harassment, to resign from office or be expelled.

The Legislative Ethics Commission released its report on the sexual harassment allegations against Assemblyman Vito Lopez.  It’s conclusions have New York City’s National Organization for Women calling for a vote of no confidence against the still-serving assemblyman, and the Republicans calling for Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver to resign.

A government reform group is calling for a state ethics panel report to be made public, one day after the panel investigating charges against Assemblyman Vito Lopez (D-Brooklyn) sent a report to the legislative ethics committee.

New York state’s ethics board is coming under criticism as it launches an investigation that is believed to focus on a sexual harassment scandal in the Assembly. The secrecy rules imposed in the laws governing the commission are causing some unanticipated problems. 

A unanimous state ethics board appears to launch a full investigation into the Assembly’s sexual harassment scandal.  The vote followed an acrimonious meeting, where commissioners appointed by the Assemblys peaker demanded a public discussion of the deliberations, and called the governor’s threats to open his own investigation “coercive.”  

The New York State Republican Party is turning a familiar Democratic Party accusation back against the Assembly Democrats, who are involved in a sexual harassment scandal. 

The state ethics board held a closed door meeting Tuesday. The Joint Commission on Public Ethics, or JCOPE, is believed to be discussing whether to investigate Brooklyn Assemblyman Vito Lopez, and possibly the Assembly Speaker, over a sexual harassment scandal.

The state’s ethics board has called a special meeting immediately after Labor Day. The news comes after Governor Andrew Cuomo and others have called for an investigation of a sexual harassment scandal in the State Assembly.

A rare apology from one of New York’s most powerful Democratic leaders regarding a payout to alleged victims of sexual harassment is raising even more questions at the state Capitol. Meanwhile, Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver says he welcomes an impending ethics probe.