Issues: Campaign Finance

Senator Comrie's remarks at the Senate Standing Committee on Elections re: Closing the LLC Loophole

Senator Comrie and the Senate Democratic Conference called on the Senate Republicans in the Elections Committee to pass legislation that will close the LLC loophole and help clean up Albany.  Senate Bill S.60 would close a loophole which currently allows limited liability companies (LLCs) to contribute vast sums of money to candidates for state office. Due to this loophole in state election law, between 2005 and 2013, LLCs contributed over $40 million to New York State candidates, parties and political action committees. This legislation would close that loophole and reduce the contribution limit for both LLCs and corporations to $1,000 annually.

April 28, 2015
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Kennedy: With Elections Committee Approval, Now Is The Time For A Full Senate Vote to Close LLC Loophole

Legislation Closing the Notorious “LLC Loophole” Approved This Afternoon by State Senate Elections Committee, Prevents Donors from Circumventing Donation Limits 

Kennedy Calls Loophole “Big Enough to Drive a Brinks Truck Through”

April 27, 2015
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SQUADRON FILES TO FORCE COMMITTEE VOTE ON BILL TO CLOSE "LLC LOOPHOLE"

LLCs Would No Longer Be "People" in NYS Elections

Squadron: Unlimited, Anonymous Contributions Pervert the Entire System

NEW YORK – State Senator Daniel Squadron has filed a motion to force a committee vote this legislative session to close New York's infamous "LLC Loophole." His bill to enact this ethics reform (S.60), also sponsored by Assemblymember Brian Kavanagh, has been stalled in the Republican-led Senate, pushing Squadron to use a procedural rule to force the legislation to be considered this legislative session. This "Motion for Committee Consideration" requires the bill to be considered in the Senate Elections Committee within 45 days.

March 17, 2015
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Gov. Cuomo: No Ethics Reform, No Budget

By Bill Carey

Monday, February 9, 2015 at 03:01 PM EST

The downfall of State Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver has led to a call for new reforms in state government, a campaign that could lead to a budget impasse. As Bill Carey reports, lawmakers believe they can avoid a budget stalemate by reaching a deal with the governor before the April 1 deadline.

Governor Andrew Cuomo has been on the road to warn that timely budgets are less important than a trustworthy government in Albany.

March 2, 2015
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Valesky Says Ethics Reform Won’t Be a Problem for Budget

Dan Clark on February 6, 2015 at 4:51 pm

Senator Dave Valesky said, Friday, he doesn’t think ethics legislation will hold up an on-time, fiscally responsible state budget.

Governor Cuomo said during a talk at NYU Law School Monday that he wouldn’t approve a budget without significant ethics reform. That package of bills would focus on disclosure of outside income for lawmakers, client information, and campaign finance reforms.

The package would be a large hurdle for Albany, with remnants of the latest corruption scandal still circling the halls of the state capitol.

But Valesky says he doesn’t see any trouble.

February 12, 2015
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Senator Gianaris Introduces Legislation Preventing Public Reimbursement to Campaign Committees for Legal Defense

(Albany, NY) Outraged that New York State must use public monies to reimburse a campaign committee for more than $1.5 million in legal defense fees and upwards of $560,000 more to a legal defense fund, Senator Michael Gianaris announced that he will introduce legislation to prevent any such payouts in the future. Senator Gianaris’ legislation will amend Section 19 of the Public Officers Law to prevent state reimbursement to legal defense funds and campaign committees for legal defense in criminal proceedings. Assemblyman Brian Kavanagh will sponsor the bill in the New York State Assembly. 

“It is sadly typical in the upside-down world of Albany that public financing for campaign committees only exists for those accused of crimes,” said Senator Gianaris. “This multi-million dollar payout is a glaring example of the desperate need to reform New York State election law, and we need to close this loophole immediately.”

December 30, 2014
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Senator Gianaris Introduces Legislation Preventing Public Reimbursement to Campaign Committees for Legal Defense

(Albany, NY) Outraged that New York State must use public monies to reimburse a campaign committee for more than $1.5 million in legal defense fees and upwards of $560,000 more to a legal defense fund, Senator Michael Gianaris announced that he will introduce legislation to prevent any such payouts in the future. Senator Gianaris’ legislation will amend Section 19 of the Public Officers Law to prevent state reimbursement to legal defense funds and campaign committees for legal defense in criminal proceedings. Assemblyman Brian Kavanagh will sponsor the bill in the New York State Assembly. 

“It is sadly typical in the upside-down world of Albany that public financing for campaign committees only exists for those accused of crimes,” said Senator Gianaris. “This multi-million dollar payout is a glaring example of the desperate need to reform New York State election law, and we need to close this loophole immediately.”

December 30, 2014
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Chanukah is the celebration of Miracles!

"Chanukah is the celebration of miracles, a reminder that all things are possible," Senator Parker said.  "As you celebrate the spirit of Chanukah with friends and family, I wish you health, happiness and good fortune." The holiday celebrates a legendary victory of the Maccabees, a band of Jews, over a Greek army that occupied the Holy Land.  After the battle, the victorious Maccabees found only a one day supply of oil in the temple to light the lamps.  But the oil burned miraculously for eight days, the story says.

December 17, 2014
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Legislative Notebook: State Initiatives of Interest to Veterans

Here is a partial listing of bills I have supported this session to aid New York’s former servicemen and servicewomen. These initiatives will now go to Governor Cuomo for final action.

-- Legislation I co-sponsored was passed by both houses (S.7839, first introduced as S.4714)) to extend the Military Service Credit Law of 2000 to all veterans who have served in the military. Right now, public employees who served in the armed forces may purchase up to three years of pension credit only if their military service occurred during specified conflicts. This measure will expand this opportunity to public employee veterans who also served their country in peacetime.

June 26, 2014
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Senator Gianaris Debates Campaign Finance Reform

Senator Gianaris Debates Campaign Finance Reform 

June 23, 2014
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Senator O'Brien, Senate Democrats continue to push for ethics reform

ALBANY, N.Y. – Senator Ted O’Brien and members of the Senate Democratic Conference today introduced a package of ethics legislation to reform state government and combat the ongoing corruption issues facing New York State. Senator O’Brien’s bill included in the package would outlaw the use of campaign money for attorney’s fees or any costs for defending against criminal or civil prosecution for alleged violations of any state or federal law (S5094).

May 6, 2014
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SQUADRON STATEMENT ON BILL TO SHINE LIGHT ON ‘BLACK HOLE’ OF CORPORATE SPENDING BLOCKED BY SENATE MAJORITY

ALBANY – Today, the Senate Committee on Corporations, Authorities, and Commissions blocked passage of Senator Daniel Squadron’s “Corporate Political Activity Accountability to Shareholders Act” (S.177/A.7287), which would require shareholder approval for corporate political contributions, public disclosure of the contributions, and justification of the business rationale for making them. The legislation would make New York a national leader in the fight against unchecked corporate political spending.

April 28, 2014
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Ethics, campaign finance oversight just got weaker in Albany, say observers

Published: April 8, 2014 8:58 PM

By MICHAEL GORMLEY  michael.gormley@newsday.com

ALBANY -- The morning after the legislature passed the fourth straight on-time state budget, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo and legislative leaders grinned in front of news cameras, gripped a white ash Adirondack baseball bat, and declared they hit a grand slam.

But some lawmakers and political observers said that leaders' most potent weapon in this budget adopted late Monday night was their curve ball.

April 17, 2014
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Senator Stavisky Criticizes Lack of Campaign Finance Reform in Budget

Albany, NY—During the budget debates, Senator Toby Ann Stavisky (D-Flushing) underscored the importance of campaign finance reform and criticized the absence of true reform from the budget that was signed by Governor Cuomo this morning.

 

April 2, 2014
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Sen. Krueger on Failure to Pass Real Campaign Finance Reform in 2014 Budget

Sen. Krueger spoke Monday night on the failure of the 2014 state budget to include meaningful campaign finance reforms. A last-minute one-off matching-funds "pilot program" for one statewide office that seems designed to fail isn't a substitute for real reforms and represents a self-defeating step backward, not a compromise.

April 2, 2014
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Senator Dilan Announces Passage of 2014 – 2015 State Budget

$138 billion spending plan funds citywide Pre-K, increases to TAP and higher-ed opportunity programs.Senator Martin Malavé Dilan (D-Bushwick) announced the passage of  a $138 billion budget that includes $300 million for universal Pre Kindergarten programs in New York City, new government reforms and increased funding to social programs.“This year’s budget has made great strides to meet new, and greater demands while continuing to offset the gaps left by previous year’s cuts. I commend Governor Cuomo and my Senate Colleagues for delivering a responsible spending plan that spends smart, invests in our students, and offers some much-needed relief for our working families,” said Senator Dilan.  

April 1, 2014
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SENATOR VALESKY HAILS PASSAGE OF FOURTH CONSECUTIVE ON-TIME STATE BUDGET

ALBANY, NY—State Senator David J. Valesky (D-Oneida) today lauded the passage of the state’s fourth and historic consecutive on-time budget. This has not been accomplished with the same Governor and legislative leaders in more than 40 years.

April 1, 2014
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