Governor Cuomo's use of state aircraft under scrutiny

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August 15, 2011

New York

Albany, NY: There are approximately 132 miles of roads between New Castle, NY and the New York State Capital building in Albany. According to Google maps, it takes 2 hours and 27 minutes to make the drive, depending on traffic.[1]

Governor Andrew Cuomo lives in New Castle, NY, just outside Mount Kisco, NY and works at the New York State Capital building in Albany.[2][3]

According to records obtained by the Associated Press under New York's Freedom of Information Law, Cuomo "used state aircraft for more than a dozen flights to or from his home following statewide tours in which he called for belt-tightening and budget cuts for schools and other services."[4]

The governor is permitted to use the aircraft for official events. Josh Vlasto, a spokesperson for Cuomo's administration, noted "every trip is approved by the counsel's office and the secretary to the governor," and accused the Associated Press of deciding to "fabricate stories."[4] The timing of certain helicopter and plane flights, though, do not always match up with the governor's public schedule, and on March 23, records show he flew from Westchester to Syracuse and back to Westchester as part of a statewide tour wherein he called for a state budget "that reins in spending, cuts waste and creates efficiencies."[4]

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