Friday, January 19, 2007

List Of N.Y. Comptroller Candidates Released

Here is the final list of Hevesi wanabees........andy

ALBANY, N.Y. -- Eighteen candidates seeking to become New York's chief financial officer and manager of the $140 billion state pension fund submitted their resumes to the Legislature on Friday.
The investors, politicians, government fiscal officers and business executives are hoping to succeed Alan Hevesi as comptroller. Hevesi, a Queens Democrat, resigned last month after pleading guilty to a felony for using staffers as chauffeurs and errand-runners for his wife from 2003 to 2006.
The candidates, including just one woman and one known Republican, have until Monday to file financial disclosure statements with the state Ethics Commission. At stake is most of the four-year term Hevesi won in November.
Those seeking the $151,500-a-year job are scheduled Tuesday to appear before a joint Senate and Assembly committee that will be joined by a panel of former comptrollers.
Gov. Eliot Spitzer negotiated the panel as part of more public process of narrowing the candidates for comptroller before the Legislature makes its choice. The panel of past comptrollers will submit up to five candidates to the Legislature, which in joint session is dominated by Democrats and led by Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver.
Several candidates have contacted Spitzer, but "he's just encouraged them to go through the process," said Spitzer spokesman Darren Dopp.
"The governor won't take sides," Dopp said. "He wants the panel to deliberate and do so without influence."
The comptroller could play a bigger role in the state budget this year because of reforms agreed to by Spitzer and legislative leaders this month. Under the agreement, the comptroller would determine the revenues that could be spent in the 2007-2008 budget if the governor, Senate and Assembly can't agree on an economic forecast of revenue.
Absent from the list was Republican J. Christopher Callaghan. The former Saratoga County treasurer lost to Hevesi in last year's election, but was the first to tip reporters about Hevesi's unpaid use of state employees.
"I always make it a policy not to lose twice in the same fiscal year," Callaghan told The Associated Press.
The comptroller is charged with auditing government operations and operating the state's pension fund. The office's 2,400 employees carry out a variety of duties, including conducting financial audits of state agencies and public benefit corporations, issuing general obligation debt bonds to pay for various projects and reviewing state contracts, payrolls and payments before they are issued.
The list, provided by the state Senate's Republican majority, includes:
--Assemblyman Thomas DiNapoli of Nassau County, the high-profile chairman of the Environmental Conservation Committee. He is also considered a contender for state Department of Environmental Conservation commissioner in the Spitzer administration, a job that remains open.
--Assemblyman Richard Brodsky of Westchester, who as chairman of the Assembly's Corporations, Authorities and Commissions Committee was the Democrats' most aggressive attacker during three-terms of Gov. George Pataki.
--Andrew Eristoff, former commissioner of the state Taxation and Finance Department under Republican Gov. George Pataki. Eristoff, who has given campaign donations to Republicans, is a former Manhattan GOP chairman and a former member of the New York City Council. He lost a run for state Senate in 2002.
--Andrew SanFilippo, Buffalo city comptroller.
--Assemblyman Joseph Morelle of Rochester, who is respected enough in the conference to have been considered one of a few candidates for replacement for the majority leader, the second spot to the speaker.
--George Nadel, a businessman who most recently worked for Trans World Entertainment.
--Assemblyman Felix Ortiz, chairman of the Assembly's Veterans Affairs Committee.
--Robert Hoffman, a former tax auditor in the state Tax Department.
--Howard Weitzman, comptroller of Nassau County.
--Arthur S. Bechhoefer, a financial adviser and administrator.
--State Sen. Martin Connor, a Democrat and former minority leader.
--William Mulrow, a Wall Street financier from Westchester County, who lost the Democratic primary to Hevesi in 2002.
--James Larocca, who held three cabinet positions under Govs. Hugh Carey and Mario Cuomo, including transportation commissioner.
--David Hancox, a state audit director in the comptroller's office.
--Alphonse Fletcher Jr., chairman and chief executive officer of Fletcher Asset Management Inc.
--Philip LaTessa, the Syracuse city auditor.
--Assemblyman Alexander "Pete" Grannis of New York City, chairman of the Insurance Committee who led investigations of the industry that led to consumer reforms. He is also interested in the DEC commissioner's job.
--Martha Stark, the New York City Finance Commissioner.
Peter Joseph, managing director of Palladium Equity Partners in New York City, submitted his resume, but later withdrew it.

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