— Civil Rights
— Domestic Violence
— Employment Discrimination
— Employment & Labor
— First Amendment: Retaliation
— Carpenter v NYS OCFS
— Governmental Abuse
— Land Use
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— Police Abuse Cases
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— Defamation: Adam Levy
— Qualified Immunity: Hughes
ALBANY CORRUPTION CONNECTION CUOMO TOP AIDES INDICTED
Cuomo's people concocted an intricate plan to cause the appearance of an electrical energy shortage in order to justify the construction of the CPV power plant in Wawayonda/Middletown.
Conspiracy, fraud, extortion and bribery were all part of the scheme to advance FRACKING INFRASTRUCTURE in New York State.
DEC officials were bullied by Cuomo staff to issue permits for a project they originally denied.
How far did the corruption and bribery go? If it pervaded the governor's office, did it also drive the sham Wawayonda Planning Board process.
Michael H. Sussman, Esq., representing the Wawayonda Six, blasted the DEC, other state officials, Orange County officials, the Orange County Industrial Development Agency and Wawayonda planning officials for greeen-lighting this bribery driven project.
He challanged them to withdraw all permits and rescind the very generous PILOT agreement which now seems to have been purchased with bribes.
– U.S. ATTORNEY'S PRESS RELEASE
– U.S. ATTORNEY'S COMPLAINT
– U.S. ATTORNEY'S INFORMATION
– SUSSMAN PRESS BRIEFING VIDEO
– NEW YORK TIMES COVERAGE
– TIMES HERALD-RECORD EDITORIAL
The action that was prosecuted was motivated by a scientifically supported set of conclusions which, unfortunately, were not reviewed or studied by CPV. The sponsor of that development did not complete its Final Environmental Impact Study [FEIS] before the local Planning Board gave it conditional approval. To our knowledge, a principal condition of its approval was that it actually complete its FEIS. This never occurred.
And, then, in 2015, when the sponsor proposed an amended site plan, the local planning board curtailed public comment, even though there had been profound environmental developments since 2009. These included the Governor's ban on fracking in NY because of the potential environmental and health dangers associated with that technology, new studies showing heightened risks of childhood autism through exposure to fracked natural gas and the identification of threatened or endangered species on or proximate to the CPV site. When the public demanded that the local Planning Board cause the applicant for an amended site plan approval to prepare a Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement [SEIS] to review the impact of these developments, it refused to do so. When the plaintiffs sought this relief in court, the applicant pulled back its amended site plan approval and retreated to its former site plan, which it had already abandoned.
A Threat of Imminent and Grave Harm
Increased Levels of Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide Have Driven Global Warming Beyond Safe Levels
"A Satyagrahi, a seeker after truth, said Gandhi, is "never afraid to trust the opponent. Even if the opponent plays him false twenty times, the Satyagrahi is ready to trust him the twenty-first time, for an implicit trust in human nature is the very essence of his creed." Louis Fischer, Gandhi (New York: Mentor 1982) p. 36.
George Orwell said that Gandhi assumed that "all human beings are more or less approachable and will respond to a generous gesture". George Orwell, A Collection of Essays, (San Diego: Harvest Books 1981) p. 172. Orwell understood that civil resistance is one of the things we do to express a strongly held opinion in a democracy: "Without a free press and the right of assembly, it is impossible not merely to appeal to outside opinion, but to bring a mass movement into being, or even to make your intentions known to your adversary." A Collection of Essays p. 178.
Civil Disobediance is a radical act of trust, part of the democratic process.
Sussman & Associates is a civil rights firm located in Goshen, NY. Michael Sussman has been fighting for social and individual justice for more than 35 years. He is well known as one of the top trial lawyers in the region. Christopher Watkins, Of Counsel, is an experienced and well-regarded trial attorney and litigator who has consistently obtained outstanding results for his clients. With a team of knowledgeable and hard-working staff, Heather M. Abissi, Esq., Mary Jo Whateley, Esq., Jonathan Goldman, Esq., and Geri Prescott, we comprise the law firm of Sussman & Watkins, dedicated to preserving civil rights and fighting for justice.
— Michael H. Sussman, Esq.
— Christopher D. Watkins, Esq.
— Background & Mission
— Our Staff
The firm is currently representing six courageous people, Pramilla Malick, Maddy Shaw, Maureen Smolka-Murphy, James Cromwell, Terri Klemm and Naomi Miller, who engaged in civil disobedience at the CPV site this past winter. These patriots acted out of "necessity," because the imperative to draw attention to the adverse environmental and health effects of the massive fracking based natural gas infrastructure is so great. After their action, press revelations have made clear that CPV sought to bribe a high-ranking official of the Cuomo Administration. With this news, Andrew Cuomo suspended all dealings between his administration and CPV.
Meanwhile our firm has an appeal of Orange County Supreme Court's decision, issued in September 2015, which allows CPV to proceed with its project despite the fact that the company repudiated its approved site plan and refused to prepare a supplement environmental impact statement to deal with new environmental concerns it has never studied, from the inducing effect its dependence on fracked natural gas will have on this technology which our state has now banned to the significant increase in noxious particulate discharge which has recently been linked to significant increases in childhood autism rates and the further imperiling of threatened and endangered species of frogs and bats which inhabit the area.