Curran signs executive order to reform Nassau County contracts

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MINEOLA -

Nassau Executive Laura Curran signed an order Tuesday reforming how the county awards and tracks contracts.

The move aims to increase transparency and oversight.

"They say sunlight is the best disinfectant," Curran said.

Her executive order requires county officials to begin tracking contracts at earlier stages to prevent them from being awarded to political friends or insiders.

"It's time to centralize control of our contracting and establish a clear path for every employee who has a role throughout the bidding and awarding system," Curran said.

John Chiara, the county's deputy executive for compliance, said the reform will place contract decisions in the hand of experts and not people who may have conflicts of interest.

As News 12 has reported extensively, Nassau's contracting process has faced scrutiny since at least 2015, when federal prosecutors charged former state Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos with crimes including improperly influencing the awarding of a county contract to his son, Adam Skelos. And former Nassau Executive Ed Mangano is currently facing federal corruption charges for allegedly accepting bribes in exchange for county contracts.

"We've got trust to earn back, and that's what we're in the process of doing," Curran said.

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