State ethics board meets briefly, reveals nothing

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The state’s ethics board on Monday abruptly called a special meeting for the next day.

When Tuesday came, the Joint Commission on Public Ethics met in Albany, quickly headed into executive session and adjourned after 30 minutes with nothing to report.

‚ÄúThere are no actions that were taken in the executive session that need to be reported out today,” JCOPE Chairwoman Janet DiFiore, the Westchester County district attorney, said at the meeting.

The Capitol’s anticipation level seems to rise with each meeting of the ethics board ever since it began investigating Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, D-Manhattan, and his office for his role in a settlement paid to two women who accused Assemblyman Vito Lopez of sexual harassment last year. (The board is not permitted to confirm or deny any pending probes, but Silver has said he’s cooperating fully.)

Silver said Tuesday his office has provided JCOPE with answers they’ve had during the course of the investigation, but said he has received no indication that the probe is wrapping up or has finished.

“We have cooperated fully with JCOPE in terms of questions they had about what took place and we believe the end result, their findings will be consistent with showing that at the time we acted in good faith in what we believed were the best interest of the victims,” Silver said.

Silver said he wasn’t surprised by the length of the investigation, calling it a “deliberative process.”

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