The Kessel NYPA Watch, October 18, 2009 – By George J. Marlin

EVERYBODY WANTS TO QUESTION RICHIE IN JOE BRUNO CORRUPTION TRIAL

Sadly, former Senator Majority Leader Joe Bruno is spending his golden years defending himself against eight felony corruption charges in Federal District Court in Albany.  (Senator Bruno is presumed innocent until proven guilty.)  Street Corner Conservative has no inside information on the charges and hazards no prediction as to the outcome of the trial.  But Street Corner Conservative does note with interest that both the Federal prosecutors and Senator Bruno’s defense team have listed Richie Kessel, former LIPA Chairman and CEO and current NYPA CEO, as a witness they expect to call at trial.

As Jim Odato reported in the Albany Times Union late last year, Senator Bruno played an unknown role in introducing Richie when he was Chairman and CEO of LIPA to a married couple in Brooklyn engaged in construction work for utilities.  The husband has since been indicted for alleged bribery of Con Ed employees to obtain road construction work.  (He too is presumed innocent.)  In fairness, there is as yet no suggestion that Richie committed any violation of federal or state law.  But Street Corner will be following the trial with interest and will keep its readers informed of developments.  In addition, Street Corner notes with bemusement that, in keeping with his well-deserved reputation as a bi-partisan purveyor of favors, both the prosecution and defense want to question Richie.  This trial, which is scheduled to start November 2, and Kessel’s testimony promise to be interesting.

Finally, readers will remember that Odato and Newsday’s Mark Harrington reported last year that Kessel would neither confirm nor deny whether he had received a subpoena in the Bruno corruption trial.  It is now safe to vouchsafe that Kessel was subpoenaed and despite his usual lengthy eloquence with the press clammed up on this uncomfortable subject.

Thanks to several correspondents for focusing Street Corner Conservative on this unique development.

THE KESSEL COUNTDOWN: 440 DAYS UNTIL RICHIE KESSEL IS FIRED BY THE NEW GOVERNOR OF NEW YORK.

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7 Comments on “The Kessel NYPA Watch, October 18, 2009 – By George J. Marlin”

  1. Beatenand bruised Says:

    Talented and experienced workers have been retiring early and quitting for years due too horrendous treatment by a “focused” management team. Patronage and “who you know” or “who’s your buddy” management appointees are at an all time high. Really just a matter of time before the lights go out.

  2. PASNY Tech Says:

    I am amazed that PASNY senior management is just watching the talent walk out the door, while the lackeys from Kessel and Quiniones continue to walk right in to their 6 figure salaries and plush offices.

    Apparently there was a meeting about succession planning at WPO last week – talk about a paradox…..

  3. Disgruntled At NYPA Says:

    As each day goes by, sentiment grows stronger that we need to rid our company of both Kessel and Quiniones. If those two weren’t bad enough in their own right, they also continue to build their respective (competing) empires with largely inexperienced and overpaid political hacks. No wonder why many long-time valued employees are jumping ship; a trend that will pick up steam once the job market starts to recover.

  4. NYPA file Says:

    No wonder Richie and Gil got rid of the chief risk guy and the IG !!

  5. Beatenand bruised Says:

    Let’s be honest. Andrew (the heir apparent) won’t go after Richie or any of the Authority Trustees because he intends to use them the same way. Why would any inspector or attorney general kill a golden goose? The only hope is someday a true federal regulatory agency will notice. Maybe the NRC for lack of decommissioning funds or FERC for a variety of irregularities.

  6. Colleague4.0 Says:

    Word is that Kessel is talking with the Governor’s office and Department of the Budget about another cash sweep in light of the State’s dire financial situation. Kessel wants to be a hero again with NYPA funds. Word to the wise.

    • Colleague4.1 Says:

      Well, if Street Corner Cons is right and our Chairman got State business to encourage him to vote on the cash sweep giveaway, some investigator should look at the circumstances and maybe the Authority can get its money back. Kessel and Townsend–for shame.


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