The New York Senate Blog

Flanagan and Winner v. Aponte - Materials and Coverage [Updated 6.26.09]

On June 24, 2009, Senators George Winner and John Flanagan filed a lawsuit against Angelo Aponte regarding his administrative duties as Secretary of the Senate.

Plaintiffs' papers are available here; respondent's papers are available here.

Plaintiffs' request for temporary relief was denied and the matter was placed on the court calendar for consideration on Friday, June 26.


Bipartisan Operating Agreements for Tied Legislatures in Other States and in the U.S. Senate

The New York State Senate remains deadlocked with 31 Senators in the Democratic Conference and 31 Senators affiliated with the Republican Conference.

Article III § 9 of the constitution dictates that in order to conduct business in the chamber, there must be a majority of Senators elected – 32 Senators — to have a quorum to conduct legislative business.


Judge McNamara's June 16, 2009 Decision in Smith v. Espada

Justice McNamara issued a decision in the case on June 16, 2009.  The ruling dismissed the matter while explicitly declining to rule on the validity of either party's claim to Senate leadership.  A copy of the decision is available here.

Image caption: Counsel for Senators Smith and Espada gathered around Judge McNamara in the court room.


Smith v. Espada - Coverage and Materials [Updated 6.15.09]

One June 11th, 2009, Senator Malcolm A. Smith filed a lawsuit to enjoin Senator Pedro Espada from carrying out the functions of the Temporary Senate President.

Coverage of the proceedings can be found here and here. (Please add comments with more links.)


NYSenate's Brightest Stars: Congratulations to "40 Under 40" Winners

The New York State Senate would like to congratulate the following immensely talented young professionals who were recognized by The Capitol in their 40 Rising Stars Under 40 piece.

The Capitol writes:

"Cynics tell us that Albany is a place that can extinguish the brightest of stars. To them, we say simply, “Read on.”



Senate Passes Bill Supporting Small "Food" Business

Economic development is a priority for the New York State Senate. From taking the lead on Empire Zone reforms to recent passage of tax credits aimed at revitalizing our communities, the Senate is committed to supporting a vibrant New York economy.


Power to the People: Local Government Consolidation Bill Passes Senate

New Yorkers are about to be given unprecedented power to change their local governments.

Today, the State Senate joined the Assembly to tackle a problem last addressed by Governor Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1932 — how to let citizens and their elected representatives consolidate or dissolve our state’s unusually large number of local governments. More efficient delivery of local services through consolidation will mean lower local property taxes for New Yorkers.


An Update on Elections Reform

Among one of the first few posts on the Official Senate Blog was one about the reform efforts undertaken by Senator Addabbo and the Elections Committee. It explained the reasons why reform in this arena is so critical to fostering democracy here in New York, and laid out the Committee's plan for public hearings to gather input on how best to push a reform agenda forward.


Senator Squadron Leads the Charge on Ethics Reform

The State Senate is committed to restoring the public’s faith in electoral politics and the workings of government in New York.  A key component of these reform efforts is a sound ethics oversight system for our state government. Senator Daniel Squadron, joined by eighteen of his State Senate colleagues, introduced key legislation today that would fundamentally revamp oversight of state government by creating a single, independent Ethics Commission.


An Invitation to Capitol Camp

Earlier this month, the New York State Senate launched its new website: We have been gratified that the preponderance of public press coverage and private feedback indicates that the new website delivers on its key goals: dramatically enhancing the usability of the Senate website, increasing the transparency of the activities of the Senate, and opening a new channel of civic participation for New Yorkers in the work of their government.

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