Marchione, at home, defends land purchase scrutinized by FBI

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Kathy Marchione on her land. (Scott Waldman)
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ALBANY—State Sen. Kathy Marchione invited reporters out to her home Wednesday as she defended her purchase of an adjacent land parcel, after the Times Union revealed she was under scrutiny from the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Marchione purchased 3.3 acres of land next to her home in an Albany suburb from a politically connected developer for $30,000 in 2007.

The F.B.I. probe is part of a larger investigation into the government of Halfmoon, the suburb where Marchione lives and was once the town supervisor.

Former town supervisor Melinda Wormuth was charged with extorting cash payments to lobby state officials and stealing $6,250 from a campaign account.

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“This was out of the blue,” Marchione told reporters, while standing in front of the wooded parcel.

“I'm very disappointed that a story such as that would appear on the front page, top billing of the Times Union, with a headline like that, and I felt the need to let everyone come out and look at what we've got," she said.

Marchione was not the only state lawmaker to answer questions about federal investigations on Wednesday.

The office and home of Queens assemblyman William Scarborough was raided early in the morning, possibly over excessive per diem expenses he claimed. 

Marchione showed off the site, a ravine with a drainage creek running down the middle. She said more than two acres of the property is considered wasteland and that she purchased it to give privacy to her home. She claimed she likely paid too much for the site, which is in a neighborhood in which many homes are valued around $500,000.