New York to pay $300K in Moreland Commission legal fees

Gov. Cuomo hired defense attorney Elkan Abramowitz last week amid growing scandal
August 07, 2014 04:15PM

New York state will be spend as much as $300,000 in legal fees for representation of the Moreland Commission during a federal investigation by the U.S. Attorney’s office.

Hinckley, Allen & Snyder LLP was hired to represent the anti-corruption commission. Michael Koenig, the lead criminal defense attorney on the case, alone will receive $550 per hour, according to a contract cited by the Wall Street Journal.

“The commission is disbanded, but it still has work to do,” Governor Andrew Cuomo told the Journal in May. “It’s in the process of referring cases to other offices and following up on those referrals—so that’s an important part of the job, is closing down in the right way.”

The Moreland Commission was formed by Cuomo last July to combat public corruption. A recent New York Times investigation exposed how Cuomo reportedly looked to block a subpoena that the commission intended to send to the Real Estate Board of New York to investigate the organization’s political donations. Governor Cuomo hired defense attorney Elkan Abramowitz last week. Top Cuomo aides Larry Schwartz and Mylan Denerstein both hired their own personal attorneys as well. [WSJ]Mark Maurer