Former town supervisor accused of fraud with storm grants

November 8, 2019 GMT

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — The former supervisor of a small Catskill Mountain region town and a businessman are accused of conspiring to fraudulently obtain recovery grants after Hurricane Irene.

A federal indictment unsealed Friday charges former Prattsville Town Supervisor Kory O’Hara and town resident Stephen Baker with fraud relating to government grants extended to Prattsville after the damaging 2011 storm.

Prosecutors say Baker provided O’Hara with false invoices between 2013 and 2015 from his business for work never performed on O’Hara’s automotive garage. O’Hara wrote checks to Baker’s business, but Baker returned the money. O’Hara then submitted the false invoices and reimbursed checks to fraudulently obtain $24,915 in grant money.

O’Hara and Baker pleaded not guilty in court Friday.

Phone messages were left with the men’s attorneys.