‘It was not optional’: Cuomo staffers say work on governor’s pandemic book was not voluntary

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is once again in hot water as several staffers came forward to say their work on his COVID-19 response book was not voluntary, despite the office saying it was.

According to Fox News, several staffers have come forward to say their work was not voluntary, which would then be illegal and an ethics violation.

The Governor’s office had previously claimed the work was not forced or a part of anyones’ jobs.

“As is permissible and consistent with ethical requirements, people who volunteered on this project did so on their own time,” Cuomo spokesman Richard Azzopardi said last week.

Local newspaper The Times Union of Albany repoted that staffers came forward to the paper.

There was a “clear expectation that we would do political work to help with his campaign and run the governor’s personal errands in the Executive Chamber,” one staffer told the paper.

It is illegal in New York for the governor or any staff to use government resources for personal gain.

Another staffer said “it was not optional.”

“It was considered a part of your job. Everyone knew that you did what was asked of you and opting out was never really an option,” a former staffer told the Times Union.

The news comes as New York representative Lee Zeldin announced his candidacy for New York governor last week.

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