Do as I say, not as I pay.
Mayor Bill de Blasio called on ex-Gov. Andrew Cuomo to compensate taxpayers for using government employees to work on his pandemic memoir — even though Hizzoner has refused to cover the costs of using his NYPD detail for his failed presidential run.
“I think there needs to be a lot of accountability from this point on,” de Blasio said Wednesday when asked about the Assembly Judiciary Committee’s report that found Cuomo used staffers to help write his $5 million book during the coronavirus crisis.
“If government resources were inappropriately used, yes of course he should pay back anything that he used inappropriately,” de Blasio said at his daily virtual press briefing from City Hall.
The lame-duck mayor has stubbornly ignored calls to repay taxpayers for the $320,000 his security detail spent on travel during this longshot presidential bid.
A rep for Cuomo said the situations aren’t even comparable.
“Unlike the mayor, who owes taxpayers hundreds of thousands of dollars in funds wasted on security costs during his embarrassing presidential campaign, staffers who volunteered on this project did so on their own time at no cost to the state,” said Cuomo spokesman Rich Azzopardi.
Last month, the city Department of Investigation found not only that the mayor improperly used his detail for the 2020 campaign, but also that he put NYPD officers to work as a “concierge service” for his son.
De Blasio, who had a famously antagonist relationship with Cuomo and even compared the ex-governor to a “Shakespearean” villain, also called the Judiciary report “deeply troubling.”
“It’s a very clear pattern of abuse of power,” de Blasio said.
In addition to the book, the report found that Cuomo sexually harassed 12 women, including seven staffers, and hid the true number of COVID-19 nursing home deaths.