Astorino, a Republican, came into office after the settlement was signed. Ever since, he’s fought over implementation of the deal with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Department of Justice, the latter of which Bharara’s office is a part.
The county executive was expecting the federal government, and HUD in particular, to be more sympathetic to Westchester’s stance in the settlement. Despite the changes in HUD and the DOJ, Bharara stayed on as U.S. attorney in New York’s southern district, and the recent filing shows his office doesn’t plan on easing up even if HUD softens its stance.
The filing says Westchester is doubling down “on its bad faith” effort by opposing the hiring of former federal Judge Stephen C. Robinson to replace former housing monitor Jim Johnson. Johnson left last summer and is now looking to run as a Democrat for governor of New Jersey.