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The original item was published from 10/25/2023 11:48:17 AM to 10/27/2023 2:52:36 PM.

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Legislative District 01

Posted on: October 25, 2023

[ARCHIVED] Following Recent Revelation of SEC Violations, Minority Caucus Members Demand Resignation

Bruderman press conference

Following Recent Revelation of SEC Violations, Minority Leader Abrahams, Caucus Members Demand Resignation of Matthew Bruderman as NuHealth Chair

(MINEOLA, N.Y.) - Following the recent Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) censure of Matthew Bruderman related to charges that he violated the trust of clients by misusing investor funds for his own personal use and failing to execute reasonable policies and procedures governing the disclosure of conflicts of interest, Nassau County Legislature Minority Leader Kevan M. Abrahams (D – Freeport) and members of the Minority Caucus on Monday, Oct. 23 demanded Bruderman’s immediate resignation as Chairman of the NuHealth board.

According to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) complaint, Bruderman Asset Management (BAM), at Bruderman’s direction, raised at least $6.1 million between February 2017 and August 2021 for debt and equity from at least 13 investment advisory clients from three private entities in which Bruderman had significant ownership interests and decision-making authority.

However, the SEC found that Bruderman and his companies failed to disclose to their investment advisory clients that the money they invested would be temporarily used for the operating expenses of entities other than those in which they intended to invest or to repay outstanding loans Bruderman made to the entities or to repay intercompany loans. In one case, he moved $400,000 of a client's investment into his personal bank account to pay off a loan he made to a company he had decision-making power in. 

Minority Leader Abrahams said that he will be formally requesting for New York State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli and Nassau County Comptroller Elaine Phillips to conduct audits for the purpose of ensuring that no financial malfeasance has occurred at NuHealth.

“Mr. Bruderman used his company as his own personal piggy bank to funnel money from his companies to himself,” Minority Leader Abrahams said. “The Nassau Health Care Corporation already has financial issues and is already in financial distress, and the last thing we need is leadership that is not going to be able to get that place back on track. Elected officials and individuals who hold a public trust must be held to a higher standard. It can’t just be the standard of, ‘he didn’t go to jail, so it’s all good.’ We cannot move forward like that.”

Bruderman, a prolific donor to the Nassau County Republican Committee, was selected by Nassau County Executive Bruce Blakeman and approved with the full support of the Republican Legislative Majority on April 1, 2022. The period leading up to his confirmation hearing was notable for his vitriolic outbursts to NuHealth board members and outrage generated over his comments related to the belief that such a thing as “good racism” exists. Since that time, NuHealth’s annual deficits have continued to balloon, and financial analysts have warned that NuHealth, which operates both Nassau University Medical Center and the A. Holly Patterson Extended Care Facility, will run out of cash by year’s end.

Legislator Siela A. Bynoe (D – Westbury), who has spearheaded no fewer than three direct requests for a public hearing on the state of NuHealth, said that the investigation into Bruderman’s personal business ventures was likely a distraction from the critical work of saving Nassau University Medical Center and the A. Holly Patterson Extended Care Facility. She additionally raised concerns that Bruderman’s continued presence as Chair may jeopardize NuHealth’s ability to secure federal and state aid essential to NuHealth’s long-term survival.

“There were state funds - $500 million was available in state funds - and NuHealth did not apply for it? That’s a performance issue, and I’d argue perhaps it’s tied to him being distracted,” Legislator Bynoe said. “His performance is lackluster, his integrity is highly questionable at this time, and I now have to call into question why the Blakeman administration would not make Mr. Bruderman available to this Legislative body. We called three times for a hearing, and each time it went on deaf ears. I suspect it was because they were shielding him from having to answer hard questions in this Legislature. It’s time for Mr. Bruderman to move on so that we can get back to the important work of saving that hospital.”

Nassau County Legislator Arnold W. Drucker (D – Plainview) said “NUMC can ill afford to have someone in a leadership position who is driving it further into the abyss of insolvency and default – a default that falls clearly and squarely on the shoulders of Nassau County.”

“One of the first thing we learn as lawyers from day one is to avoid conflicts of interest and even the appearance of impropriety. Where we’re at today is the epitome of impropriety. Mr. Bruderman has now damaged his own integrity and damaged the integrity of NUMC,” Legislator Drucker said. “This Minority Caucus had serious misgivings about Mr. Bruderman from day one. We questioned his leadership abilities, we questioned his motives, we questioned his tactics. I remember him stating to us openly that he told his fellow board members, ‘if you are not on board with me, I’m going to run you over.’ Well, you know what? It looks like the SEC and perhaps other law enforcement may be running over him.”

PHOTO CAPTION – From left, Nassau County Legislators Debra Mulé and Arnold W. Drucker; Minority Leader Kevan M. Abrahams, and Legislator Siela A. Bynoe pictured at the Theodore Roosevelt Executive & Legislative Building on Monday, Oct. 23.

PHOTO CREDIT – Office of the Nassau County Legislature Minority

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