Gov. Cuomo raked in practically $230,000 in marketing campaign money from donors tied to a medical community that obtained $62 million price of emergency state contracts amid the COVID-19 pandemic, The Put up has discovered.
The contributions from executives and docs affiliated with Somos Healthcare Suppliers amounted to about 10 % of the $2.3 million that Cuomo raised in the course of the previous six months, in accordance with state Board of Elections information.
Though New York Metropolis limits candidates from receiving greater than $400 every from anybody doing enterprise with Metropolis Corridor, there’s no such restriction on state candidates.
John Kaehny, head of the good-government group Reinvent Albany stated the cash given to Cuomo “appears to be like like pay to play.”
“It’s loopy that that is allowed,” he stated.
“We’ve been pushing for a ban on state distributors contributing to campaigns.”
The nonprofit Somos community is made up of round 2,500 docs who primarily deal with sufferers whose payments are paid by the state’s $75 billion Medicaid program, which is among the many nation’s costliest and most beneficiant by way of advantages.
Through the pandemic, Somos scored 5 emergency contracts to manage coronavirus exams and supply vaccinations at varied pop-up places and public housing initiatives, in accordance with the state comptroller’s web site.
Cuomo’s 12 Somos-related supporters — who gave a mixed $229,500 — made a few of the greatest contributions to his marketing campaign, with about half coming simply days earlier than the most recent, July 11 cutoff date.
However complete donations to Cuomo declined greater than 40 % in comparison with the earlier six-month interval, amid a sequence of scandals that embody sexual harassment allegations by a number of present and former feminine aides.
The three-term Democrat was additionally outraised by the presumptive Republican gubernatorial nominee, US Rep. Lee Zeldin (R-LI), who collected practically $4.1 million.
Cuomo’s donors with ties to Somos embody Henry Munoz, a Somos co-founder and former chairman of the Democratic Nationwide Committee, who gave $25,000.
Physicians who’re a part of the Somos community additionally made hefty contributions, together with Dr. Candido Norberto, who gave $40,000; Dr. Juan Tapia Mendoza, who gave $35,000; and Dr. Emilio Villegas, who gave $25,000.
Cuomo’s marketing campaign described the Somos donors as “longtime supporters going again a minimum of half a decade” and Cuomo spokesman Wealthy Azzopardi stated that “anybody searching for to ascribe nefarious motives to that is barking up the improper tree.”
Somos spokesman Jack Sterne — who previously labored for Cuomo — additionally stated that “many of the work of our docs community has been as volunteers,” including: “At this level, we’ve donated considerably extra money testing, feeding and vaccinating New Yorkers than we are going to probably obtain.”