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NY. Another Corrupt NY State (SUNY) Employee

February 1, 2011

Joseph Fisch, Inspector General of New York State announced today that J. FELIX STREVELL, 47, of New Castleton, New York was sentenced today by United States District Judge Gary L. Sharpe, in Albany, N.Y., to five years of probation with a six-month period of home confinement for committing mail fraud in connection with a scheme to defraud the citizens of New York State

The charges arose out of STREVELL’s conduct while serving as Chair, Chief Executive Officer, and Executive Director of the Institute for Entrepreneurship (“Institute”) and as President and Chief Executive Officer of the related not-for-profit entity, The Institute for Enterpreneurship, Inc. (“Institute-501(c)(3)”). According to the indictment, STREVELL devised a scheme to defraud New York State and its citizens of money and property  by diverting federal and state grant monies through the Institute-501(c)(3) and using the Institute-501(c)(3) to enrich himself and his family members.

The Institute for Entrepreneurship (“the Institute”) was developed by the State University of New York (SUNY) to support small business and entrepreneurial efforts in New York State.

The above in itself is a joke as all the Institute support is increased taxpayer funding to support a non-profit college.  Judging by the number of jobs leaving, not entering the state, SUNY should give back the money to the taxpayers.

Initially, the Institute was affiliated with Empire State College and located within the college’s facilities in Saratoga Springs, New York. In January 1999, however, several months after receiving its first independent funding, the Institute relocated to Albany, New York and control over the entity was transferred from SUNY (who still performed administrative tasks like payroll, accounting and revenue management) to the 501(c)(3).

Between August 1998 through June 30, 2001, the Institute received approximately $8 million in funding and spent approximately $5.3 million. Funding for the Institute came from three sources: 1) federal Small Business Administration and other grants ($4.7 million), 2) grants from New York State, including a line item ($2.2 million) and additional funds appropriated through Empire State College for five staff positions ($675,000), and 3) donations and contributions from state agencies, corporations, and individuals ($424,000).

All in all Mr. Strevell’s fraud was nominal.  The most disturbing is the amount of grant money going to organizations purporting to help small businesses, but in reality are only interested in helping themselves.

http://www.fbi.gov/albany/press-releases/2009/alfo032609.htm/

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