The New York State Troopers Police Benevolent Association has been found to have paid out hundreds of thousands of dollars to entities connected to the union or the charity organization, Signal 30 Benefit Fund, while the association was under an ongoing criminal investigation into its finances.
These payments to individuals or companies with connections to the union were for a range of services, including legal work, lobbying or networking. Among the entities receiving funds is Hudson Strategies Government Relations, a registered lobbying firm run by Gordon Warnock, a retired trooper who served as the PBA’s second vice president and is now the political director for the union. Warnock is also an executive director for Signal 30 Benefit Fund.
Signal 30 Benefit Fund was formed by the PBA almost 20 years ago, and according to its tax filings, it has millions of dollars in assets. However, it has tried to distance itself from the PBA in recent months, with its leadership asking board members to keep internal deliberations confidential. The split has included removing the PBA’s president from the web page that lists the fund’s executive board members.
The FBI has recently joined the investigation into the PBA’s finances. Members of the State Police Special Investigations Unit executed search warrants at the PBA’s Albany headquarters and Signal 30 Benefit Fund’s nearby offices in January, carting away records and copying information from computers.
The PBA has retained new legal counsel and hired an accounting firm to review its bank accounts and expenditures dating back years, and the public comment period on the chemicals is open until March 20th.
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