County executive candidate promises crackdown on corruption

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The race for Westchester County executive is heating up as the Democratic candidate is proposing new legislation to crack down on corruption.   

Democratic County executive candidate George Latimer went back on the attack after facing off against his incumbent challenger Rob Astorino (R) in their first debate Tuesday.

Surrounded by supporters on the steps of Rye City Hall Wednesday, Latimer says that if he is elected to Westchester's top job, he would propose legislation that would compel county officials to disclose whether they have been subpoenaed by any law enforcement agency. "We cannot ensure that there's public integrity unless public officials disclose those situations where subpoenas are authorized and subpoenas issued are being debated and discussed," says Latimer.

Latimer says the proposed legislation is needed after current County Executive Rob Astorino was subpoenaed by federal investigators last year over a $15,000 donation made to his campaign back in 2013 by a Manhattan businessman. Jona Rechnitz pleaded guilty to bribery charges in March, and is expected in federal court later this month.

The Astorino campaign says the money was spent back in 2013. But as a measure of goodwill, $15,000 was donated to several Westchester charities last year. Astorino officials also say all the documents that federal investigators requested were handed over. "George is doing this to try and throw a big smoke bomb up because of his tax issue,” says Astorino spokesman Bill O’Reilly.

The next Westchester County executive debate will air on News 12 on Nov. 1.

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