Cuomo gets criticized for not fixing LIPA before the storm

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Andrew Cuomo, who initially served as the vocal chord for thousands of New Yorkers frustrated by the utility companies' response to Hurricane Sandy, is now facing increasing scrutiny over his role overseeing the state-controlled Long Island Power Authority.

At a press conference yesterday, he was pelted with questions from a television reporter in the front row who asked, in a number of ways, what responsibility Cuomo shouldered for LIPA's problems, since the governor left several board positions vacant, and did not replace others whose terms have expired.

After he rattled off areas where LIPA failed—communication, preparation, preparedness—the same reporter asked, "But do you take any responsibility for that, as the head overseer?"

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"As the head overseer," Cuomo answered, "when we get stabilized, I'm going to do a thorough review."

It's not exactly a "buck-stops-here" sort of answer, but it's consistent with what he's pledged before.

Already, my colleague Dana Rubinstein examined why it took Cuomo so long to do anything abut LIPA, and the New York Post editorial board later chimed in with its own criticism, dismissing a defense from Cuomo's spokesman as "patent nonsense."

One reader of the New York Post, Phil Serpico of Queens, wrote to say, "His commiseration is not a tactic he can use to cover up the truth about something he could have fixed a year ago. The buck is sitting right at his desk."

And this morning, the lede of Bill Hammond's column in the Daily News: "Failing to take proper charge of the Long Island Power Authority is proving to be Gov. Cuomo’s worst screwup to date — and it’s a doozy."