ALBANY, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — Federal prosecutors have begun investigating the Cuomo administration and the Buffalo Billion economic development project.

As WCBS 880’s Rich Lamb reported, Manhattan U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara is trying to determine whether there is any connection between developers winning contracts for the project – which is intended to draw manufacturing, health care facilities and other business to Buffalo – and contributions to Cuomo’s campaigns.

“It raises a lot of red flags and that’s why the U.S. attorney is investigating,” said Citizens’ Union head Dick Datey, “because we don’t want to have the business of the state being driven by campaign contributions.”

When asked about the more than $96,000 in campaign contributions from a contractor building for the Solar City project in Buffalo, Cuomo said, “It hasn’t been a problem for the past 100 years, so I don’t know why it would be today.”

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