Lt. Gov. Robert Duffy said today it would be premature to discuss whether he will seek re-election with Gov. Andrew Cuomo next year, saying his political plans will be discussed “at the appropriate time next year.”
The statement comes as speculation continues that Duffy, the former Rochester mayor, may leave the Cuomo administration to head the Rochester Business Alliance.
“I have been asked if I plan to run for re-election next year. Obviously if I ran it would be with Governor Cuomo. The governor has not announced his plans for next year and therefore discussion of my role is premature,” Duffy said in the statement.
“The governor and I both feel strongly that political discussions can interfere with our governing and we have much more important work to do before next year’s political calendar commences,” the statement continued. “The governor and I have developed a great working relationship as well as a deep personal friendship over these past three years and our administration is performing well and still getting stronger. We will discuss our future political plans at the appropriate time next year.”
Last week, Duffy declined comment on whether he was leaving the business alliance job, saying he has heard the same rumors. Cuomo also didn’t offer a direct answer last week when he was asked about Duffy’s future.
Cuomo tapped Duffy as his running mate in 2010, and Duffy resigned as Rochester mayor when they took office in 2011.
Duffy has been traveling the state on Cuomo’s behalf, and he heads the 10 regional economic development councils. But Duffy could make about $200,000 a year more if he left for the business alliance job. The retiring president, Sandy Parker, earned nearly $308,000 in 2010, plus nearly $67,000 in additional compensation, according to the group’s income tax forms.
Duffy recently bought a lakefront home in the Finger Lakes from Parker for $527,000.
Duffy collects a $70,000-a-year pension for his years as a Rochester police officer, which included time as chief, and a $151,500 salary as lieutenant governor.