March 19, 2018
Honorable John A. DeFrancisco
New York State Senate
Albany, New York 12247
Dear Senator DeFrancisco:
On behalf of myself and every member of the Joint Commission on Public Ethics, I write in response to your letter dated today, March 19, 2018.
The members of this Commission have the utmost confidence in Executive Director Seth Agata, and remain fully committed to his serving in this role. He has demonstrated the highest integrity, and his reputation for professionalism is well-earned.
All Commission staff and Commissioners are subject to a recusal policy, which can be found on our website and has been in place since the Commission’s inception. Mr. Agata has adhered to this policy. He has recused himself at all relevant times from any and all matters in which he had any involvement during his period of employment in the Executive Chamber.
Finally, as you are aware, the Commission operates under a strict confidentiality statute. The Commission does not, and will not, discuss anything that is or may be the subject of an investigation. Thus, whether or not an investigation occurs is not public information by law, and to reveal any such information contrary to law carries criminal penalties. It is only upon the issuance of a Substantial Basis Investigation Report that any investigative matters are made public. The Commission will continue to follow the law as written.
Michael K. Rozen
Chair, New York State Joint Commission on Public Ethics