Issues: Ethics

Statement From Senate Democratic Conference Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins on Ethics Reform

 "The Senate Democratic Conference has always been the most aggressive advocates of comprehensive ethics reforms.  We look forward to reviewing  the legislation when it is finalized.” 

March 18, 2015
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Senator Krueger, Assembly Member O'Donnell Release Letter To Gov. Cuomo Calling For Summit ASAP And Immediate Suspension Of Email Deletion

New York – State Senator Liz Krueger and Assembly Member Daniel O’Donnell today released a letter to Governor Andrew Cuomo, urging him to follow through on a proposed email retention and transparency summit as soon as possible, and to immediately suspend his administration’s 90-day email deletion policy.  The letter also strongly recommends the inclusion of policy experts in the discussion, including Robert J. Freeman, Executive Director of the Committee on Open Government (COOG), as well as state archive staff and representatives of the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA).  

March 18, 2015
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Congratulations to Eric Schneiderman!

What You Should KnowBy State Senator Rev. Rubén Díaz32nd Senatorial District(718) 991-3161Congratulations to Eric Schneiderman!You should know that I offer my congratulations to New York State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman for proposing a ban on outside income for legislators, as was reported in every newspaper today.

March 17, 2015
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CAUCUS PUSHES 2015 LEGISLATIVE SESSION PRIORITIES

“Meeting the Needs of Minority Communities during this Budget Season 

New York, NY – The New York State Black, Puerto Rican, Hispanic and Asian Legislative Caucus led by Chair Assemblyman Jeffrion Aubry, outlined the major priorities from their annual report “The People’s Priorities 2015”. Standing in support with them was New York State United Teachers (NYSUT), Fiscal Policy Institute (FPI), Hunger Action, American Heart Association, YMCA, and other labor unions, advocacy groups, and clergy. The Caucus formally announced their agenda which ensures that the budget and other pieces of legislation positively affect and provide equal access for low income and minority communities. 

March 12, 2015
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Senator Krueger, Assembly Member O'Donnell Introduce Bill To Regulate Email Deletion By State Officials

New York – State Senator Liz Krueger and Assembly Member Daniel O’Donnell today introduced a bill to regulate email retention policy for New York State officials and extend existing Freedom of Information Act requirements to the state legislature.  The legislation is based on the Federal “Capstone” email retention policy, which was adopted after extensive study of best practices for handling electronic records.  It would establish strict standards for permanent preservation of the records of policymakers, including statewide public officials, state legislators and senior agency positions, among others, and prohibit deletion of emails from other government officials for at least seven years.  

March 12, 2015
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New York State Black, Puerto Rican, Hispanic, and Asian Legislative (Public Hearing) on Criminal Justice Reform

Joint – Assembly Standing Committee on Codes
Chair: Assembly Member Joseph Lentol
Assembly Standing Committee on Judiciary
Chair: Assembly Member Helene Weinstein
and New York State Black, Puerto Rican, Hispanic, and Asian Legislative Caucus
Chair: Assembly Member Jeffrion Aubry
Public Hearing: Criminal Justice Reform
Place: Hamilton Hearing Room B, Legislative Office Building, 2nd Floor, Albany, New York
Time: 10:00 A.M.
Contact: Juan Gabriel Genao (518) 455-4313
Media Contact: Assembly Press Office (518) 455-3888
ORAL TESTIMONY BY INVITATION ONLY

March 11, 10:00 AM - 1:00 PM
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Murphy's term limits bill passes Senate

ALBANY, NY - While running for office, State Senator Terrence Murphy promised to vote for term limits. This week, he had the opportunity to do just that. Although unlike the Assembly, the Senate rules already provide term limits for legislative leaders, the Senate voted to approve a bill cosponsored by Murphy which would codify that as law and enforce term limits on leadership positions in both houses of the legislature. "George Washington voluntarily relinquished power after eight years," Murphy said. "If it was good enough for him, it is more than enough for Albany. This is just the first step in cleaning up the cesspool."

March 5, 2015
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Senator Gianaris Rolls Out Ethics Reform Legislation

(Albany, NY) Senator Michael Gianaris joined Senate Democratic Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins and several Democratic Conference members to introduce a package of common sense ethics reform legislation. Among the proposals are bills that would effectively ban outside income for legislators, take away pensions from elected officials convicted of felonies, create a public financing system for elections and strengthen financial disclosure laws. In addition, Senator Gianaris authored two bills that would lower contribution limits for campaigns and prevent campaign committees from being reimbursed for legal defense fees.

March 4, 2015
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SERINO SUPPORTS TERM LIMITS FOR LEGISLATIVE LEADERSHIP

SERINO SUPPORTS TERM LIMITS FOR LEGISLATIVE LEADERSHIP

 

ALBANY,NY—Senator Sue Serino (R, C, I—Hyde Park) announced today that legislation critical to reforming ethics in state government passed in the Senate today. Serino co-sponsored the bill, introduced by Senator Joseph Griffo (R, C, I—Rome), (S. 2722B) which would set into law eight-year terms limits for leadership positions in the Senate and Assembly and limit the number of consecutive years a legislator can serve as a committee chair or party leader.

March 2, 2015
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Senator Krueger And Senate Democratic Conference Introduce The “Clean Up Albany” Legislative Package

Albany, NY – State Senator Liz Krueger and the Senate Democratic Conference today unveiled a major legislative package to deal with the ongoing ethics crisis in State Government. This package of groundbreaking bills will cap legislators’ outside incomes, end the LLC loophole, bar elected officials from using campaign funds for criminal defense and personal use, cap contributions to party “soft money” accounts, and end the practice of taxpayer funded reimbursements of legal fees. The Senate Democrats also introduced measures to strip corrupt officials of taxpayer funded pensions and reform how campaigns are funded. Unfortunately, the Senate Majority has consistently blocked all meaningful ethics reforms initiatives.

February 9, 2015
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Press Release: Senate Democratic Conference Introduces the “Clean Up Albany” Legislative Package

Includes Legislation that Restricts Outside Income, Closes LLC Loophole, Ends State Reimbursements for Legal Defense and Strips Pensions from Corrupt Officials

February 9, 2015
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Media Advisory: Senate Democratic Conference to Announce Major Ethics Plan and a Cap On Outside Income

Albany, NY - The Senate Democratic Conference will announce a major ethics reforms legislative package on Monday, February 9, at 12:00 PM.   

WHO: Senate Minority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins, Members of the New York State Senate Democratic Conference

WHEN: Monday, February 9, 2015 at 12:00 PM

WHERE: Senate Democratic Conference Room, Room 315 Capitol, Albany 

February 9, 2015
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LAWMAKERS IN ALBANY NEED DAVID’S LAW

by Ed Griffin-Nolan - Wednesday, January 28th, 2015

(This may or may not be an exclusive)

A lawyer friend of mine says that whenever a law is named for someone, you can pretty much figure that it’s a bad law.

February 2, 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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KWANZAA GREETING FROM SENATOR KEVIN PARKER

KWANZAA GREETING FROM SENATOR KEVIN PARKER

 

In the spirit of the principles on which it was founded, I proudly wish a Happy Kwanzaa to the thousands around the country who have embraced and celebrate this very important holiday in the African American community. Kwanzaa, first observed as a holiday tradition in 1966, is a celebration of family, community and culture.

December 26, 2014
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Senator Gianaris Statement on Queens Library Board of Trustees Removal of Thomas Galante

Senator Michael Gianaris issued the following statement regarding the news that the Queens Library Board of Trustees voted to terminate Thomas Galante as President and CEO of the Queens Library system.

"The Board's removal of Mr. Galante is an important step towards righting the ship of the Queens Library system and moving it towards a brighter future. I am proud to have sponsored the new law that made this progress possible for a treasured institution that temporarily lost its way. I look forward to the day when Queens residents can again be proud of our libraries, and today we are one step closer," said Senator Gianaris.

December 18, 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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SENATOR PARKER’S ANNUAL THANKSGIVING TURKEY GIVEAWAY AN OVERWHELMING SUCCESS!

FROM THE OFFICE OF STATE SENATOR KEVIN PARKER (D-Brooklyn)

Contact: Glenda Cadogan ‌‌‌‌‌| triniscribe@aol.com | 718-629-6401 ph |718-629-6420 fax

 

SENATOR PARKER’S ANNUAL THANKSGIVING TURKEY GIVEAWAY

AN OVERWHELMING SUCCESS

 

November 28, 2014
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Statement From State Senator Jose Peralta On NYC Human Rights Commission

"I applaud the mayor's decision to bring in new leadership at the Human Rights Commission.  Instead of tackling the thousands of citizen-initiated complaints it receives annually, for the past several years HRC was disproportionately focusing its limited resources on fining businesses for using unintentionally gendered language in job recruiting advertisements," (i.e. posting an ad for a ‘waitress’ or ‘hostess’).

“Of the 53 discrimination settlements reported by the Commission in 2014, 18, or more than a third of all settlements, are for this sort of case.  Of those 18, only two appear to have been tested to show actual discriminatory intent. There is a similar pattern in 2012 and 2013, where employment ads allegedly showing gender discrimination made up 40% and 30% of total settlements respectively and only a few were tested to prove actual discriminatory intent.

"Many of the cases don’t come out of actual complaints, but rather from college students getting paid by HRC to troll on-line classifieds. 

"It is extremely troubling that this kind of questionable case comprises a third or more of the Commission’s enforcement output when so many complaints of actual discrimination go unanswered.

“New Yorkers expect and deserve a Human Rights Commission that helps bring justice to those who have been wronged, not one focused on generating revenue through petty fines.”

-30-

November 7, 2014
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