Capitol Confidential wrote about the Assemly's study on counting prisoners. This data will help clear the air around the redistricting process.
I have an article in today’s paper about Assembly Democrats releasing new population figures for state legislative districts, showing which ones increased and decreased when inmates (per a 2010 law) are counted at their last known address — not in their jail cells.
As we all expected, the biggest losers are rural, upstate Republicans. Only one Senate Democrat — Suzi Oppenheimer of Westchester County — had a significant population loss as a result of the recounting. As Ken Lovett noted today, districts in New York City pick up the gains.
LATFOR should use the results of the Assembly's study as they continue the redistricting process. The Daily News wrote about the study on how to count prisoners for purposes of redistricting.
ALBANY - Prisoners in New York can't vote, but they may decide which party controls the state Senate next year.
A new law now requiring prisoners to be counted toward the population of their home community - rather than where they are serving time - could dramatically alter the political landscape of more than a dozen upstate districts.
That's because state officials will redraw legislative and congressional districts based on 2010 Census Bureau population figures in time for the 2012 elections.
Prison-based gerrymandering is illegal and must not be used when redrawing district lines. The Times-Union wrote about a study conducted by the State Assembly which counts prisoners at there home address for purposes of redistricting.
ALBANY -- Several Senate districts in upstate New York would lose more than 5,000 constituents, according to newly analyzed data that may guide district lines.
The datasets, released Monday by Assembly Democrats, change Census figures normally used to draw districts for the Senate, Assembly and Congress so as to count prison inmates at their last known address -- not in their cells.
State of Politics wrote about a Court of Appeals rejection of Nassau county district lines. Legislative district lines must not be drawn in a manipulated, partisan manner.
A Court of Appeals decision for Nassau County could have statewide implications for the redrawing of legislatively boundaries next year.
Or, at least that’s what Senate Democrats hope.
The Court of Appeals ruled 7-2 7-0, with two judges dissenting in part (whoops!), this morning rejected boundaries drawn by the Nassau County Legislature, which the judges claim ignored a three-step process as laid out in a county charter.
Governor Cuomo signed into law new ethics oversight legislation, but some say the measure is flawed, and that there is still work to be done to fight corruption in government.
Cuomo signed the ethics law without fanfare or a public ceremony. In a statement, he touted the new stricter requirements for disclosure of lawmakers' outside income, a 14 member ethics panel empowered to probe charges of corruption, and the elimination of pensions for elected officials in the future who are convicted of a felony. Cuomo called it a "major step forward in restoring the people's trust in government and changing the way Albany does business".
New York Times editorialized the need for the Governor to veto any legislative district lines not drawn in a bipartisan manner. We need to create an independent redistricting commission now.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo of New York has taken a strong stand against gerrymandering. He put forward a good bill that would create an independent commission to draw political districts and promised to veto any new maps that are “partisan.” Albany’s pols are not giving up.
Mr. Cuomo’s bill went nowhere, despite the fact that a hefty majority of legislators signed a pledge in 2010 to support such a commission. The old-style task force is now drawing up maps, and the business-as-usual crowd is trying to figure out how to get around the veto threat.
Rochester Democrat and Chronicle editoriliazed on the need for lawmakers to keep their promises and pass independent redistricting. We need a special session to vote on this issue and establish a fair process.
When Gov. Andrew Cuomo returns from his summer vacation at an undisclosed location somewhere in New York state, he should move swiftly on critically important post-session loose ends such as redistricting.
On page 17 of his 2010 campaign handbook, The New NY Agenda: A Plan for Action, Cuomo made it clear that he would "fight" for an independent redistricting commission.
Syracuse Post-Standard wrote about the joint-interview/debate Senator Gianaris and Senator DeFrancisco will participate in this afternoon on The Jim Reith Show.
Syracuse -- Two New York Senators are scheduled to talk about legislative redistricting Wednesday on The Jim Reith Show on WSYR radio.
Sen. John DeFrancisco, R-Syracuse, has been critical of Gov. Andrew Cuomo's proposal to create an independent commission to redraw state and congressional political boundaries, questioning whether such a commission could be independent of political influences.
Senator Gianaris has challenged Senator DeFrancisco to a debate on redistricting to take place live on WSYR's The Jim Reith Show. Senator Gianaris is hoping for an open, honest debate on the issue. Capitol Confidential wrote about the challenge:
This should be lively: it looks like Democratic Sen. Mike Gianaris of Queens and Syracuse Republican John DeFrancisco will debate redistricting with Syracuse talk show host Jim Reith on Newsradio 570 in the near future.
Here is the interchange of letters today, triggered by Gianaris’s interview last night on Reith’s radio show, which prompted DeFrancisco to call in.
Rochester Democrat & Chronicle editorialized the importance of creating an independent redistricting commisssion so that district lines will be redrawn in a nonpartisan fashion.
For what it's worth, the New York Legislature's traveling committee on redistricting was in Rochester this week to gather public input on redrawing boundary lines for state legislative and congressional districts.
Though the four-member panel is bipartisan, includes two citizens, and is said to be committed to transparency, it was hard to take seriously. Its members, after all, were doing work that should be done by a panel independent of the legislative process.
There is a cloud over the entire redistricting process. Albany Times Union wrote about LATFOR's continued use of prison-based gerrymandering, despite a 2010 law making it illegal.
ALBANY -- Good-government and civil rights groups charge New York's commission on legislative redistricting will break a 2010 law if it counts inmates where they are jailed.
The legislative commission, known as LATFOR, held its first meeting last week in Albany and announced it will for now ignore a 2010 law -- passed when Democrats controlled the Senate, Assembly and Executive Mansion -- that requires inmates be counted at their last known address.
The lifetime achievements of Brooklyn native Dorothy Burnham were recognized and lauded by NYS Senator Velmanette Montgomery (D-Brooklyn) during the reading of a Senate resolution, which was unanimously passed by the full Senate during the final days of the 2011 Legislative Session. The resolution paid tribute to Dorothy Burnham’s many notable contributions to our public education system, the advancement of civil rights, and to the promotion of racial and economic equality. Ms. Burnham was also honored for her designation as recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award by the New York Friends of the People's World. “Dorothy Burnham is a Renaissance Woman,” said Senator Montgomery.
Urges colleagues to abide by fair standards at task force’s first public meeting
Senator Martin Malavé Dilan, member of the Legislative Task Force on Demographic Research and Reapportionment (LATFOR), urged colleagues to embrace many of the reforms the public has been calling for during the task force’s first public meeting of the 2011- 12 redistricting process.