Senate Unanimously Approves Special Committee Of Inquiry

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By unanimous vote, the Senate passed a resolution today approving the Special Committee of Inquiry, chaired by Senator Eric T. Schneiderman,  to investigate the conduct for which Senator Hiram Monserrate was convicted by the State Supreme Court of Queens County. The committee’s first official meeting will be held today at 5:00 PM in Capitol Room 124, open press.

The full text of the resolution, offered by Senate Majority Conference Leader John Sampson, is as follows:

SENATE RESOLUTION PROVIDING for a Select Committee of the Senate to investigate the facts and circumstances surrounding the conviction of Senator Hiram Monserrate on October 15, 2009
 
WHEREAS, On March 23, 2009, Senator Hiram Monserrate was indicted in State Supreme Court in Queens on felony and misdemeanor charges of intentionally and recklessly causing physical injuries to another person; and
 
WHEREAS, On October 15, 2009, Senator Hiram Monserrate was acquitted in State Supreme Court in Queens of all felony charges, and convicted of the misdemeanor charge of recklessly causing physical injury to another person; and
 
WHEREAS, A conviction for such misdemeanor offense does not result in the automatic forfeiture of office upon conviction under the Public Officers Law; and
 
WHEREAS, The seriousness of these domestic violence charges and the circumstances surrounding them warrant further investigation by the Senate, and may warrant the imposition of sanctions by the Senate; now, therefore be it
 
RESOLVED, That a Select Committee of the Senate to investigate the facts and circumstances surrounding the conviction of Senator Hiram Monserrate is hereby established, to consist of nine Senators to be appointed by the Temporary President of the Senate. Four of such members shall be appointed upon the recommendation of the Minority Leader of the Senate. The chairperson of such committee shall be appointed by the Temporary President of the Senate; and be it further
 
RESOLVED, That such committee is hereby authorized and directed to investigate the facts and circumstances relating to the conviction against Senator Monserrate; and be it further
 
RESOLVED, That such committee shall have the same authority as
committees constituted under Article 4 of the Legislative Law and Senate
Rule VII; and be it further
 
RESOLVED, That such committee shall ensure a full and fair investigation, ensure fairness in the hearing process, specifically providing Senator Monserrate and his counsel with notice of all public committee proceedings, as well as ensuring opportunities for Senator Monserrate to be heard; and be it further
 
RESOLVED, That such committee shall report to the Senate with its recommendations; and be it further
 
RESOLVED, That upon the delivery of such report to the Senate, such committee shall cease to exist.

You can watch a live video stream of the committee's first meeting here beginning at 5pm.