New York Gov. Hochul Launches Purge Of Cuomo Cronies
Last week, New York’s New Gov. Kathy Hochul threatened to fire all unvaccinated health-care workers and replace them with vaccinated foreign workers (‘we’re in talks with the State Department’, she said, perhaps not realizing how low vaccination rates are outside the US and Europe) as she tries to make her mark on the Empire State.
While Hochul might have a little trouble ousting 20% of the state’s hospital and nursing-home workers, she’ll probably have a much easier time purging the last Cuomo loyalists still drawing a paycheck in Albany.
The New York Post reports that Gov. Hochul has officially launched a purge of agency heads and other officials appointed by her disgraced predecessor. At least nine of these ‘Cuomo-crats’ – agency heads and other high-ranking officials – will either be resigning or told that they’ll be out of a job within the next few weeks according to the Post’s sources.
At the top of the list of potential departures is Michael Hein, the former Ulster County Executive who was tapped by Cuomo in 2019 to oversee the Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance.
At the start of the pandemic, Hein was put in charge of the regional control room for the Hudson Valley. In that role, he monitored key health risks as the state tenatively reopened in the summer of 2020.
More recently, Hein was supposed to oversee the distribution of $2.6 billion in federal money to at-risk tenants who needed help paying back rent and utilities. He was criticized for failing to hand out the money fast enough.
Other officials who are about to be handed their walking papers include:
Dr. Theodore Kastner, commissioner of the state Office for People With Developmental Disabilities
Arlene González-Sánchez, head of the Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services
Kenneth Theobalds, chair of the New York State Insurance Fund
Human Rights Division Commissioner Licha Nyiendo
Deputy Secretary for General Government and Technology Molly Reilly
Deputy Secretary for Civil Rights and Workforce Debra Alligood White
Director of Cannabis Program Norman Birenbaum
Deputy Secretary for Public Safety Jeremy Shockett
But the purge truly began in earnest when Gov. Hochul sacked Health Commissioner Howard Zucker, whose handling of the pandemic in the state has been widely criticized. Zucker has also been accused of helping Cuomo minimize the death toll at nursing homes across the state (Zucker issued the infamous March 2020 order that all nursing homes must accept COVID-positive residents returning from hospitals. Amazing, Zucker also barred nursing homes from testing the returning residents for the virus.
Per the NYP, Amit Singh Bagga, who has been appointed Hochul’s deputy secretary for intergovernmental affairs, will be charged with supervising the purge.
Now it’s time for New Yorkers to sit back and watch the heads roll.
Sat, 09/25/2021 – 19:30