- Associated Press - Wednesday, March 4, 2015

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) - Former New York Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver has been honored for his work to support help for those struggling with addiction.

The Manhattan Democrat received the “Champion Award” from the Coalition for Community Services. The group represents addiction treatment professionals and held its annual legislative reception Tuesday.

Last month, Silver stepped down as speaker after more than 20 years following his arrest on charges that he took nearly $4 million in kickbacks and payoffs. He has pleaded not-guilty and is keeping his Assembly seat.

The coalition’s public policy officer, Luke Nasta, says his group wanted to honor Silver despite his legal trouble to acknowledge his long support of programs to help those with addiction.

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