Dr. Alain Kaloyeros, who became a decisive figure in drawing new technology companies to upstate New York, stands accused in a bid-rigging scheme beyond the one that now mars the image of the Buffalo Billion turnaround project.
The federal indictment made public Tuesday re-enforces the accusation that Kaloyeros helped steer a preferred developer contract in Syracuse to one of Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo's big campaign donors, COR Development, just as Kaloyeros and well-connected lobbyist Todd Howe allegedly did in Buffalo for the LPCiminelli company. Howe has pleaded guilty to several charges and is cooperating with the prosecution team.
Kaloyeros, according to federal prosecutors and now a federal grand jury, used his posts as head of the SUNY Polytechnic Institute and as a board member of the Fort Schuyler Management Corp. to tailor the specifications in "requests for proposals" to ensure that the contracts went to the favored donors. He also colluded with key executives to give them advance notice of what would be contained in the RFPs, according to the federal agents and prosecutors who read his emails.
"Kaloyeros falsely represented to Fort Schuyler that the bidding processes for the Syracuse RFP and the Buffalo RFP were fair, open and competitive when in truth and in fact, Kaloyeros and Howe had predetermined that the Syracuse developer would be awarded the Syracuse RFP and the Buffalo developer would be awarded the Buffalo RFP," the federal indictment states.
Aside from the deals in Syracuse and Buffalo, Kaloyeros is charged in three schemes over development contracts in the Albany area. But those charges were lodged by Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman, back in September and are not encompassed in the federal case. Kaloyeros has pleaded not guilty to those three state charges.
The New York City law firm that represents Kaloyers, once dubbed the state's "nano-czar," said he will eventually be cleared.
“We are disappointed with the government’s decision to indict Dr. Kaloyeros," said one of the lawyers, Michael Miller. "Dr. Kaloyeros is innocent of the charges filed against him and looks forward to being exonerated.
"Dr. Kaloyeros has dedicated his life to training young scientists, developing cutting-edge research, and attracting outstanding tech companies, economic development and jobs to Upstate New York. We are confident that, at the end of this process, a jury will conclude that he committed no crimes along the way.”
Kaloyeros, who was released on his own recognizance when the federal charges were lodged in September, was one of the state university system's best-paid employees, reaping annual compensation around $800,000. He resigned as president of SUNY Polytechnic but stated he intended to again serve as a SUNY professor. He also has been looking for other jobs in academia.