BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — Rep. Tom Reed said Tuesday in Buffalo he’s asking the U.S. Attorney General and federal prosecutors to investigate Gov. Andrew Cuomo for what he calls “misuse of federal funds” related to the stretch of Interstate 90 that runs through the Seneca Nation.
The five-mile stretch is in “deplorable condition,” Reed said.
Earlier this month, Reed called on the governor and the state to step up and fix the road.
Last week, Cuomo said the state would not send crews in to repair it because the Seneca Nation would oppose it, and added that he didn’t want to jeopardize the state’s position in a casino revenue dispute with the Seneca Nation.
Reed’s letter reads as follows:
Attorney General Barr
U.S. Department of Justice
950 Pennsylvania Ave NW
Washington, DC 20530
Dear Attorney General Barr,
I am concerned for the safety of the traveling public along the stretch of Interstate 90 which runs through the Seneca Nation. According to U.S. Department of Transportation data using the International Roughness Index (IRI), a good road has around an lRI of around or below 95, and an acceptable road has an IRI between 95 – 170. As seen attached, the IRI for the part ofl-90 that runs through Seneca Nation is “poor.” The worst part of it is rated at 296. There is a small portion of the road that is around a 157.
However, if you have ever driven this stretch of road yourself, there is no need for a bureaucratic table to tell you this stretch of road is in deplorable condition and a threat to public safety.
Nevertheless, my second concern relates to the recent statement made by New York Governor Andrew Cuomo where he stated last week that the reason New York State will not repair the road, which they are legally bound to maintain, has to do with an unrelated political dispute between the Governor and the Seneca Nation over gaming revenues.
From the public’s view, this appears to be nothing more than the Governor exacting political revenge on the Seneca Nation at the peril of public safety. The federal funds have been delivered to repair the road, and it is time to fix the road before someone dies.
Given this information, I kindly request the U.S. Department of Justice to investigate the Governor and his office for the misuse of federal funds, the abuse of power and any and all other federal crimes, related or unrelated, uncovered in this investigation.
The safety of the traveling public is at stake, Mr. Attorney General – and we both know people are more important than profits. Member of Congress CC: U.S. Attorney for the Western District of New York KennedyRep. Tom Reed