Issues: Authorities and Commissions

SENATOR FUSCHILLO: NEW LIPA OVERSIGHT MEASURES SIGNED INTO LAW

        Senator Charles J. Fuschillo, Jr. (R-Merrick) announced that legislation he cosponsored to greatly strengthen oversight of LIPA has been signed into law by Governor Andrew Cuomo.

        “For years, LIPA ratepayers have rightfully demanded greater oversight over LIPA and its financial practices. With this new law, they’re finally getting new levels of transparency and accountability from LIPA that are long overdue. I’m pleased that Governor Cuomo has approved these new protections for LIPA ratepayers,” said Senator Fuschillo, a member of the Senate’s Energy Committee.

February 7, 2012
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February 6, 2012
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Gallivan Introduces Bill To Help Laid-Off NFTA Police Officers Get Back To Work

Eliminates Bureaucratic Red-Tape Preventing Experienced Cops From Landing New Jobs

Senator Patrick M. Gallivan (R,C,I – 59th District) introduced legislation today to allow the 20 recently laid-off Niagara Transportation Authority (NFTA) police officers to transfer to law enforcement job openings that may exist with nearby departments.

February 3, 2012
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SENATOR FUSCHILLO ANNOUNCES SENATE PASSAGE OF NEW LIPA OVERSIGHT MEASURES

        Senator Charles J. Fuschillo, Jr. (R-Merrick) today announced that the New York State Senate has passed legislation he cosponsors to greatly strengthen oversight of LIPA. The legislation would help make LIPA more transparent and accountable to its ratepayers.

        “LIPA ratepayers pay some of the nation’s highest utility costs; we have every right to expect and demand more from LIPA. This legislation will bring a new level of transparency, accountability, and oversight to LIPA, all of which are sorely needed. I’m pleased that the Senate has approved these new protections for LIPA ratepayers,” said Senator Fuschillo, a member of the Senate’s Energy Committee.

January 30, 2012
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Inkblot districts are visible proof of Albany’s gerrymandering

The New York Daily News editorial investigates the oddly shaped districts in the Senate GOP's redistricting proposal and how they represent the unjustified approach Republicans used to draw district lines.

Do not mistake the nearby shapes for Rorschach inkblots.

They are visible proof of how flagrantly state Senate Republicans distorted the process of redrawing election districts.

The weird outlines also document why Gov. Cuomo must veto the maps.

January 30, 2012
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Gov. Cuomo must veto ridiculous new Senate and Assembly districts

An editorial by the New York Daily News talks about the Senate Republican's draft for new Senate and Assembly districts and how they have used redistricting to increase their power while abandoning the interests of voters.

Nothing less than the future of representative democracy in New York is on the line as the Legislature establishes new district lines based on the latest census.

By long-standing practice, lawmakers have drawn maps to protect incumbents while shutting out challengers. Democrats load up Assembly districts with Democrats; Republicans stock Senate districts with Republicans.

January 30, 2012
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A Veto for the Voters

The New York Times wrote an editorial discussing the Senate Republican's proposed legislative district maps, which are so blatantly partisan that Governor Cuomo's office has called them "simply unacceptable."

This week, New York State lawmakers unveiled proposed legislative district maps, based on the 2010 census and required in time for this year’s elections. The maps, as expected, are entirely designed to protect party interests for Republicans who control the State Senate districts and Democrats who run the Assembly.

January 30, 2012
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LIPA Oversight Bill Unanimously Passes Senate.

New York State Senator Kenneth P. LaValle (R-C, Port Jefferson) and Assemblyman Bob Sweeney (D-Lindenhurst) announced that legislation they crafted in concert with Governor Cuomo has been unanimously passed by the New York State Senate.  The legislation will, once signed by the Governor, create the “Long Island Power Authority Oversight and Accountability Act.” The bill previously unanimously passed the Assembly.

Senator LaValle and Assemblyman Sweeney said that the bill seeks “to provide wide-ranging oversight over the business and rate-making practices of the Long Island Power Authority.  LIPA’s customers will benefit by having the review performed under the direction of the professional staff of the New York State Department of Public Service (DPS).”

January 30, 2012
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Two Senators Caught In The Crosshairs Of Redistricting Speak Out

NY1 posted a video of Senator Gianaris' interview on Inside City Hall where he talks about the need to get fair district maps drawn.

Watch the video here.

January 30, 2012
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Sen. Gianaris on Redistricting and the Primary Date

Capital Tonight had an interview with Senator Gianaris discussing the egregiously drawn district maps and the new primary date.

Watch the interview here.

January 30, 2012
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New lines draw veto threat

Times Union wrote an editorial that talks about the release of the new state legislative districts, which have drawn heavy criticism from Senate Democrats and could potentially be vetoed by Governor Cuomo.

New state legislative districts were unveiled Thursday amid a fusillade of criticism — including an unprecedented veto threat by Gov. Andrew Cuomo.

Cuomo's verdict came in a terse statement a few hours after the lines, which must be redrawn every 10 years to conform to the new federal Census, arrived at 2 p.m.

"At first glance, these lines are simply unacceptable and would be vetoed by the governor," said spokesman Josh Vlasto. "We need a better process and product."

[...]

January 30, 2012
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A senator, just for us?

An editorial by Times Union discusses the state Senate Republican's redistricting proposal and calls them out for being glaringly politically self-interested rather than serving the public's interest.

First came the pitch that the 63rd state Senate district the Republicans want to create in order to protect their tiny majority would be upstate. How nice of them, looking after a region that tends to get shortchanged politically and economically.

January 30, 2012
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The Capitol Pressroom for January 27, 2012

The Capitol Pressroom's Susan Arbetter did an interview with Senator Gianaris discussing the redistricting maps. 

Listen to the interview here

January 30, 2012
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LATFOR React-o-Mat: outraged Senate Dems edition

Capitol Confidential posted an article that highlights the many issues resulting from the state Senate Republican's redistricting proposal, which Senator Gianaris feels should not be tolerated by the people of New York.

Because we’re expecting several of them, we’re posting a separate React-o-Mat to corral statements from Senate Democrats ticked off by the release of LATFOR’s maps.

From Sen. Mike Gianaris, in a phone interview with Jimmy:

“I spent over five years making the case for an independent redistricting, and in five years I did not accomplish as much for the cause as Senate Republican’s did today. It’s about as bad — partisan, political — as you could imagine.”

January 30, 2012
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Gianaris Compares Senate GOP To Tom DeLay

Capital Tonight posted a video that features Senator Gianaris speaking about the blatant politicized process by which the Senate Republicans have drawn new district maps.

Watch the video here

January 30, 2012
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State Senate GOP majority wants to merge four Queens districts currently held by Dems into two

The New York Daily News article discusses the state Senate Republican's proposal for new districting lines that combines four Queens districts into two. Senator Gianaris believes that the Senate Republican's ploy further demonstrates why the redistricing process needs improvement.

The state Senate GOP majority wants to merge four Queens districts currently held by Democrats into two — and one is held by the chair of the Democratic Senate Campaign Committee.

Michael Gianaris, whose position makes him a main architect of Democratic campaign strategy in the Senate, would face a reelection dogfight against a Latino incumbent, Jose Peralta, in a heavily Latino district, sources said.

January 30, 2012
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As goo-goos despair, a reform legislator says court-drawn lines are still the 'most likely outcome'

An editorial written by Capital discusses the looming release of LATFOR's redistricing lines and the possibility that Governor Cuomo will veto the redistricting proposal. According to Senator Gianaris, LATFOR's inability to propose district lines that are fair will likely necessitate court involvement.

This week, the lawmakers running the redistricting process are expected to reveal the lines they came up with. (A lawmaker told me they may release Assembly and Senate lines as soon as today, but not congressional ones.)

January 30, 2012
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SHADOW PLAY

City and State wrote an editorial that talks about the upcoming release of New York state's new lines for election districts. Senator Gianaris believes that LATFOR's redistricitng process is nothing more than a political power play.

It was one of the last of the group’s dozens of public hearings before drafting new lines for election districts. Dilan, representing the Senate Democratic Conference on the task force, was upset about a memo from a Senate Republican lawyer that advocated for a 63rd Senate seat. The memo had been placed on the LATFOR website late on a Friday, with no Democratic input.

[...]

January 30, 2012
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Senator Gianaris speaks at Long Island City High School

Senator Gianaris speaking at Long Island City High School about the Department of Education's plans for restructuring

January 24, 2012
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Local pols reject Morgan Stanley price fixing settlement

The Queens Courier wrote an article about the Department of Justice's $4.8 million settlement with Morgan Stanley for their illegal pricing scheme, which cost ratepayers roughly $300 million. Senator Gianaris and other local politicians are pushing the Dept. of Justice to increase the fine, arguing that the current settlement is unacceptable and would allow Morgan Stanley to keep millions in profit.

Local elected officials are expending “energy” to ensure Morgan Stanley doesn’t get a quick “fix” to its illegal pricing ploy.

January 23, 2012
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