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Ruling Allows Madison County Lawsuit To Move Forward

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m.gifford/Flickr Creative Commons

Madison County, NY (WIBX) - A lawsuit claiming that part-time Madison County attorney, John Campanie, received over $800,000 of “improper payment” from a law firm he helped select as outside counsel, can move forward. This, after a ruling by the State Supreme Court on Tuesday, January 24. The decision is essentially denying a motion filed by State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli and Campanie, to dismiss the lawsuit.

The suit alleges that Campanie violated state laws when he collected a tax payer funded county salary, and payment from the law firm, hired to represent Madison County. The lawsuit–brought on by Oneida Nation employees and two Madison County residents–is asking the courts to stop Campanie from receiving payment from the Nixon Peabody law firm, as well as, restitution to state and local taxpayers.

In a released statement, Dan Smith, Spokesman for the Oneida Indian Nation said, “For more than a decade, Madison County Attorney John Campanie collected a taxpayer-funded county salary as well as compensation from an outside law firm that he helped select to represent Madison County for county legal work. This is a clear violation of state law. State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli was made aware of the illegal payments but did not act on the information. Yesterday’s ruling affirms what we have said all along. Madison County Attorney John Campanie and New York State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli provided no legal basis for why this suit should be dismissed. By rejecting the efforts of the Madison County Attorney and the New York State Comptroller to avoid answering the charges in these lawsuits, the court has made it clear that this case should proceed on its merits.”

A link to the ruling can be found right here.

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