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2007 report from IG's Office

2007 report from IG's Office

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Published by Watershed Post

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Published by: Watershed Post on May 22, 2012
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05/22/2012

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STATE OF NEW YORKOFFICE OF THE STATE INSPECTOR GENERAL
Investigation Finds Conflict of Interest by Superintendentof Ski Center Operated by Department of Environmental ConservationMay 9, 2007
An investigation by New York State Inspector General Kristine Hamannconcluded that Tony Lanza, the Superintendent ofBelleayre Mountain, a ski centeroperated by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC),engaged in conduct that constituted a conflict of interest between his officialduties andprivate activities.
The Inspector General’s investigation found that
Lanza, who is a DEC employee,anda personal friendown a housein Fleishmannsnear Belleayre Mountain inHighmount. From November 2004 to March 2005 and November 2005 to March 2006,Lanza andthe friendrented the house to theBoston Concession Group (BCG), which atthe time was under contract with Belleayre to operate the ski shop and food concessionsat the ski center. BCG used the house rental for itsemployeeswho worked at Belleayre,and made rentalpayments to Lanza andhis friendtotaling$14,500.The investigation also
determined that the “Belleayre Trolley”, a State
-ownedshuttle bus used to transport skiers from Fleishmanns to Belleayre and between the skiresort and outlying parking lots, madetrips solely for the purpose of carrying the BCG
employees residing in Lanza’sand Peretta’s
house to and from work.BCGstill holds theBelleayre contract, and whileitsemployees no longer stay in thehouse, they continue tocommute between Fleishmanns and Belleayre on the shuttle bus.We also found that Lanzacontracted agency business withhis friend, who waspaidmore than $1,000by Belleayrefor consulting services she provided in thepreparation of pamphlets.Additionally, our investigationrevealedthat since1995Belleayrehas depositedthe approximately $33,000 it receives annually inconcession revenues from BCG intoachecking accountestablished andmanagedby Artemisia,anadvertising firmthat hadbeenemployed by Belleayre.According to Belleayre officials, the account was createdso that Artemisia could be paid promptly for its services.In 2002, Belleayredecided to
do its own promotional activities and ceased using Artemisia’s advertising services.
Despite this change, Belleayre requestedArtemisiato continue managingthe checking

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