senate Bill S4520

Relates to the investigation of public corruption by the attorney-general

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Bill Status


  • Introduced
  • In Committee
  • On Floor Calendar
    • Passed Senate
    • Passed Assembly
  • Delivered to Governor
  • Signed/Vetoed by Governor
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  • 08 / Apr / 2011
    • REFERRED TO FINANCE
  • 04 / Jan / 2012
    • REFERRED TO FINANCE

Summary

Relates to the investigation of public corruption by the attorney-general.

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Bill Details

Versions:
S4520
Legislative Cycle:
2011-2012
Current Committee:
Senate Finance
Law Section:
Executive Law
Laws Affected:
Add Art 5-A ยงยง80 - 88, Exec L
Versions Introduced in 2009-2010 Legislative Cycle:
S7599

Sponsor Memo

BILL NUMBER:S4520

TITLE OF BILL:
An act
to amend the executive law, in relation to the investigation of
public corruption by the attorney-general

PURPOSE OR GENERAL IDEA OF BILL:
To authorize the attorney general to investigate public corruption
whenever it shall appear that a public official may be engaged in
conduct that could be considered public corruption and the attorney
general believes it is in the public interest that an investigation
be opened.

SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS:
Section 1. Amends executive law by adding a new article 5-A which
expands the Attorney General's ability to investigate public
corruption.
within the new article will be the following new sections of executive
law:

Section 80. Definitions.
Section 81. Investigation by Attorney General.
Section 82. Action by Attorney General.
Section 83. Examination of witnesses and preliminary injunction.
Section 84. Procedure on hearing.
Section 85. Application of provisions of civil practice law and rules.
Section 86. Criminal Prosecution.
Section 87. Immunity.
Section 88. Appointment of deputies.

Section 2. Effective Date.

JUSTIFICATION:
Scandals that have engulfed Albany in recent years have shown the real
need for more scrutiny of the political process. Under current law,
the New York State Attorney General's Office does not have the
authority to initiate criminal probes into public corruption, despite
having the resources and expertise to do so. That power falls to
local district attorney offices, which by and large do not have the
comparative resources for public integrity units. This legislation
will correct this issue by enabling the Attorney General to probe
public corruption cases in a matter similar to the Martin Act. That
measure enabled the Attorney General's Office wide latitude to pursue
financial fraud that resulted in positive reforms. The goal of this
legislation is to provide the tools that would enact the same change
to our government.

PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY:
S.7599 of 2010.

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS:
None.

EFFECTIVE DATE:
Immediately.

view bill text
                    S T A T E   O F   N E W   Y O R K
________________________________________________________________________

                                  4520

                       2011-2012 Regular Sessions

                            I N  S E N A T E

                              April 8, 2011
                               ___________

Introduced  by  Sens. VALESKY, CARLUCCI, KLEIN, SAVINO -- read twice and
  ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee  on
  Finance

AN  ACT  to amend the executive law, in relation to the investigation of
  public corruption by the attorney-general

  THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND  ASSEM-
BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:

  Section 1. The executive law is amended by adding a new article 5-A to
read as follows:
                               ARTICLE 5-A
         INVESTIGATION OF PUBLIC CORRUPTION BY ATTORNEY-GENERAL
SECTION 80. DEFINITIONS.
        81. INVESTIGATION BY ATTORNEY-GENERAL.
        82. ACTION BY ATTORNEY-GENERAL.
        83. EXAMINATION OF WITNESSES AND PRELIMINARY INJUNCTION.
        84. PROCEDURE ON HEARING.
        85. APPLICATION OF PROVISIONS OF CIVIL PRACTICE LAW AND RULES.
        86. CRIMINAL PROSECUTION.
        87. IMMUNITY.
        88. APPOINTMENT OF DEPUTIES.
  S  80.  DEFINITIONS.  FOR  THE PURPOSES OF THIS SECTION, THE FOLLOWING
TERMS SHALL HAVE THE FOLLOWING MEANINGS:
  1. "PUBLIC OFFICIAL" SHALL HAVE THE  SAME  MEANING  AS  SET  FORTH  IN
SUBDIVISION (L) OF SECTION ONE-C OF THE LEGISLATIVE LAW; AND
  2.  "PUBLIC  CORRUPTION"  SHALL  MEAN  ANY ACT OF CORRUPTION, FRAUD OR
CRIMINAL ACTIVITY, OR ANY ACT CONSTITUTING A CONFLICT OF  INTEREST  MADE
BY A PUBLIC OFFICER.
  S  81.  INVESTIGATION BY ATTORNEY-GENERAL. 1. WHENEVER IT SHALL APPEAR
TO THE ATTORNEY-GENERAL, EITHER UPON  COMPLAINT  OR  OTHERWISE,  THAT  A
PUBLIC OFFICIAL MAY BE ENGAGED IN CONDUCT CONSTITUTING PUBLIC CORRUPTION
OR  HE  OR SHE BELIEVES IT TO BE IN THE PUBLIC INTEREST THAT AN INVESTI-

 EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                      [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                           LBD10783-01-1

S. 4520                             2

GATION BE MADE, THE ATTORNEY-GENERAL MAY IN HIS OR HER DISCRETION EITHER
REQUIRE OR PERMIT SUCH PUBLIC OFFICIAL TO FILE WITH HIM A  STATEMENT  IN
WRITING  UNDER  OATH  OR OTHERWISE AS TO ALL THE FACTS AND CIRCUMSTANCES
CONCERNING  THE  SUBJECT  MATTER  WHICH  HE OR SHE BELIEVES IT IS TO THE
PUBLIC INTEREST TO INVESTIGATE, AND FOR THAT PURPOSE MAY PRESCRIBE FORMS
UPON WHICH SUCH STATEMENTS SHALL BE MADE. THE ATTORNEY-GENERAL MAY  ALSO
REQUIRE  SUCH  OTHER DATA AND INFORMATION AS HE OR SHE MAY DEEM RELEVANT
AND MAY MAKE SUCH SPECIAL AND INDEPENDENT INVESTIGATIONS AS  HE  OR  SHE
MAY DEEM NECESSARY IN CONNECTION WITH THE MATTER.
  2. THE ATTORNEY-GENERAL, HIS OR HER DEPUTY OR OTHER OFFICER DESIGNATED
BY  HIM  OR HER IS EMPOWERED TO SUBPOENA WITNESSES, COMPEL THEIR ATTEND-
ANCE, EXAMINE THEM UNDER OATH BEFORE HIM OR HER OR A MAGISTRATE, A COURT
OF RECORD OR A JUDGE OR JUSTICE THEREOF AND REQUIRE  THE  PRODUCTION  OF
ANY  BOOKS  OR  PAPERS WHICH HE OR SHE DEEMS RELEVANT OR MATERIAL TO THE
INQUIRY. SUCH POWER OF SUBPOENA  AND  EXAMINATION  SHALL  NOT  ABATE  OR
TERMINATE  BY  REASON  OF ANY ACTION OR PROCEEDING BROUGHT BY THE ATTOR-
NEY-GENERAL UNDER THIS ARTICLE.
  3. NO PERSON SHALL BE EXCUSED FROM ATTENDING SUCH INQUIRY IN PURSUANCE
TO THE MANDATES OF A SUBPOENA, OR FROM PRODUCING A  PAPER  OR  BOOK,  OR
FROM  BEING  EXAMINED  OR REQUIRED TO ANSWER A QUESTION ON THE GROUND OF
FAILURE OF TENDER OR PAYMENT OF A WITNESS FEE AND/OR MILEAGE, UNLESS  AT
THE  TIME  OF  SUCH  APPEARANCE  OR PRODUCTION, AS THE CASE MAY BE, SUCH
WITNESS MAKES DEMAND FOR SUCH PAYMENT AS A CONDITION  PRECEDENT  TO  THE
OFFERING  OF TESTIMONY OR PRODUCTION REQUIRED BY THE SUBPOENA AND UNLESS
SUCH PAYMENT IS NOT THEREUPON MADE.    THE  PROVISIONS  FOR  PAYMENT  OF
WITNESS  FEE  AND/OR MILEAGE DO NOT APPLY TO ANY PERSON IN THE EMPLOY OF
ANY PUBLIC OFFICIAL WHOSE CONDUCT OR PRACTICES IS BEING INVESTIGATED.
  4. IF A PERSON SUBPOENAED TO ATTEND SUCH INQUIRY  FAILS  TO  OBEY  THE
COMMAND  OF  A  SUBPOENA  WITHOUT  REASONABLE  CAUSE,  OR IF A PERSON IN
ATTENDANCE UPON SUCH INQUIRY SHALL WITHOUT REASONABLE CAUSE REFUSE TO BE
SWORN OR TO BE EXAMINED OR TO ANSWER A QUESTION OR TO PRODUCE A BOOK  OR
PAPER  WHEN  ORDERED SO TO DO BY THE OFFICER CONDUCTING SUCH INQUIRY, OR
IF A PERSON, PARTNERSHIP, CORPORATION,  COMPANY,  TRUST  OR  ASSOCIATION
FAILS  TO  PERFORM ANY ACT REQUIRED HEREUNDER TO BE PERFORMED, HE OR SHE
SHALL BE GUILTY OF A MISDEMEANOR.
  5. IT SHALL BE THE  DUTY  OF  ALL  PUBLIC  OFFICERS,  THEIR  DEPUTIES,
ASSISTANTS,  SUBORDINATES,  CLERKS OR EMPLOYEES AND ALL OTHER PERSONS TO
RENDER AND FURNISH TO THE ATTORNEY-GENERAL, HIS OR HER DEPUTY  OR  OTHER
DESIGNATED  OFFICER  WHEN  REQUESTED  ALL  INFORMATION AND ASSISTANCE IN
THEIR POSSESSION OR WITHIN THEIR POWER.  ANY  OFFICER  PARTICIPATING  IN
SUCH  INQUIRY AND ANY PERSON EXAMINED AS A WITNESS UPON SUCH INQUIRY WHO
SHALL DISCLOSE TO ANY PERSON OTHER THAN THE ATTORNEY-GENERAL THE NAME OF
ANY WITNESS EXAMINED OR ANY OTHER INFORMATION OBTAINED UPON SUCH INQUIRY
EXCEPT AS DIRECTED BY THE ATTORNEY-GENERAL SHALL BE GUILTY OF  A  MISDE-
MEANOR.
  S  82.  ACTION  BY  ATTORNEY-GENERAL. 1. WHENEVER THE ATTORNEY-GENERAL
SHALL BELIEVE FROM EVIDENCE SATISFACTORY TO HIM OR HER THAT  ANY  PUBLIC
OFFICIAL  HAS ENGAGED IN, IS ENGAGED OR IS ABOUT TO ENGAGE IN ANY OF THE
PRACTICES OR TRANSACTIONS REFERRED TO  AS  AND  DECLARED  TO  CONSTITUTE
PUBLIC  CORRUPTION,  HE  OR  SHE  MAY BRING AN ACTION IN THE NAME AND ON
BEHALF OF THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK AGAINST SUCH PUBLIC  OFFI-
CIAL  AND ANY OTHER PERSON OR PERSONS CONCERNED IN OR IN ANY WAY PARTIC-
IPATING IN OR ABOUT TO PARTICIPATE IN SUCH PUBLIC CORRUPTION, TO  ENJOIN
SUCH PUBLIC OFFICIAL OR PERSON FROM CONTINUING SUCH PUBLIC CORRUPTION OR
ENGAGING  THEREIN OR DOING ANY ACT OR ACTS IN FURTHERANCE THEREOF OR, IF
THE ATTORNEY-GENERAL SHOULD BELIEVE FROM SUCH EVIDENCE THAT SUCH  PUBLIC

S. 4520                             3

OFFICIAL  OR  PERSON  ACTUALLY  HAS  OR  IS  ENGAGED  IN ANY SUCH PUBLIC
CORRUPTION, HE OR SHE MAY INCLUDE  IN  SUCH  ACTION  AN  APPLICATION  TO
ENJOIN  PERMANENTLY  SUCH PUBLIC OFFICIAL OR PERSON WHO MAY HAVE BEEN OR
MAY  BE  CONCERNED  WITH  OR  IN  ANY  WAY  PARTICIPATING IN SUCH PUBLIC
CORRUPTION, FROM  CONTINUING  PARTICIPATION  IN  SUCH  ACTIVITIES  WHICH
CONSTITUTE SUCH PUBLIC CORRUPTION. IN SUCH ACTION AN ORDER OR A JUDGMENT
MAY BE ENTERED AWARDING THE RELIEF APPLIED FOR OR SO MUCH THEREOF AS THE
COURT  MAY DEEM PROPER. UPON A SHOWING BY THE ATTORNEY-GENERAL IN HIS OR
HER APPLICATION FOR A PERMANENT INJUNCTION THAT THE DEFENDANT  NAMED  IN
THE  ACTION  HAS  REFUSED  TO  BE SWORN OR TO BE EXAMINED OR TO ANSWER A
MATERIAL QUESTION OR TO PRODUCE A BOOK OR PAPER RELEVANT TO THE  INQUIRY
WHEN  DULY  ORDERED  SO TO DO BY THE OFFICER OR JUDGE DULY CONDUCTING AN
INQUIRY INTO THE SUBJECT MATTER FORMING THE BASIS OF THE APPLICATION FOR
SUCH INJUNCTION, SUCH REFUSAL SHALL  BE  PRIMA  FACIE  PROOF  THAT  SUCH
DEFENDANT  IS  OR  HAS BEEN ENGAGED IN PUBLIC CORRUPTION AS SET FORTH IN
SUCH APPLICATION AND A PERMANENT INJUNCTION MAY ISSUE FROM  THE  SUPREME
COURT  WITHOUT  ANY  FURTHER SHOWING BY THE ATTORNEY-GENERAL. IN SUCH AN
ACTION, THE COURT MAY AWARD TO THE PLAINTIFF A SUM NOT IN EXCESS OF  TWO
THOUSAND DOLLARS AS AN ADDITIONAL ALLOWANCE.
  2.  UPON  A  SHOWING  BY THE ATTORNEY-GENERAL IN AN APPLICATION FOR AN
INJUNCTION THAT ANY PUBLIC OFFICIAL ENGAGED  IN  PUBLIC  CORRUPTION  HAS
EVER BEEN CONVICTED BY A COURT OF COMPETENT JURISDICTION IN ANY STATE OR
COUNTRY  OF  ANY  FELONY,  OR  OF ANY OTHER CRIMINAL OFFENSE BY ANY SUCH
COURT,  WHETHER  OR  NOT  CONSTITUTING  A   FELONY,   INVOLVING   PUBLIC
CORRUPTION,  THE  SUPREME  COURT  AFTER  A HEARING MAY ISSUE A PERMANENT
INJUNCTION AWARDING THE RELIEF APPLIED FOR, OR SO MUCH  THEREOF  AS  THE
COURT  MAY  DEEM PROPER, AGAINST SUCH PUBLIC OFFICIAL SHOWN TO HAVE BEEN
SO CONVICTED.
  3. UPON A SHOWING BY THE ATTORNEY-GENERAL THAT  PUBLIC  CORRUPTION  AS
DEFINED BY THIS ARTICLE HAS OCCURRED, HE OR SHE MAY INCLUDE IN AN ACTION
UNDER THIS ARTICLE AN APPLICATION TO DIRECT RESTITUTION OF ANY MONEYS OR
PROPERTY OBTAINED DIRECTLY OR INDIRECTLY BY ANY SUCH PUBLIC CORRUPTION.
  S  83.  EXAMINATION OF WITNESSES AND PRELIMINARY INJUNCTION.  WHENEVER
THE ATTORNEY-GENERAL HAS DETERMINED TO COMMENCE  AN  ACTION  UNDER  THIS
ARTICLE,  HE  OR  SHE  MAY  PRESENT TO ANY JUSTICE OF THE SUPREME COURT,
BEFORE BEGINNING SUCH ACTION, AN APPLICATION IN  WRITING  FOR  AN  ORDER
DIRECTING  THE  PERSON OR PERSONS MENTIONED IN THE APPLICATION TO APPEAR
BEFORE THE JUSTICE OF THE SUPREME COURT OR REFEREE  DESIGNATED  IN  SUCH
ORDER AND ANSWER SUCH QUESTIONS AS MAY BE PUT TO THEM OR TO ANY OF THEM,
OR  TO  PRODUCE  SUCH PAPERS, DOCUMENTS AND BOOKS CONCERNING THE ALLEGED
PUBLIC CORRUPTION TO WHICH THE ACTION WHICH HE OR SHE HAS DETERMINED  TO
BRING  RELATES,  AND  IT SHALL BE THE DUTY OF THE JUSTICE OF THE SUPREME
COURT TO WHOM SUCH APPLICATION FOR THE  ORDER  IS  MADE  TO  GRANT  SUCH
APPLICATION. THE APPLICATION FOR SUCH ORDER MADE BY THE ATTORNEY-GENERAL
MAY SIMPLY SHOW UPON HIS OR HER INFORMATION AND BELIEF THAT THE TESTIMO-
NY  OF  SUCH PERSON OR PERSONS IS MATERIAL AND NECESSARY. THE PROVISIONS
OF THE CIVIL PRACTICE LAW AND RULES, RELATING TO AN APPLICATION  FOR  AN
ORDER  FOR  THE  EXAMINATION  OF WITNESSES BEFORE THE COMMENCEMENT OF AN
ACTION AND THE METHOD OF PROCEEDING ON SUCH EXAMINATION, SHALL NOT APPLY
EXCEPT AS HEREIN PRESCRIBED. THE ORDER SHALL BE GRANTED BY  THE  JUSTICE
OF  THE  SUPREME  COURT  TO WHOM THE APPLICATION HAS BEEN MADE WITH SUCH
PRELIMINARY INJUNCTION OR STAY AS MAY APPEAR TO SUCH JUSTICE TO BE PROP-
ER AND EXPEDIENT AND SHALL SPECIFY THE TIME WHEN  AND  PLACE  WHERE  THE
WITNESSES  ARE  REQUIRED  TO  APPEAR. THE JUSTICE OR REFEREE MAY ADJOURN
SUCH EXAMINATION FROM TIME TO TIME AND WITNESSES MUST ATTEND  ACCORDING-
LY.  THE  TESTIMONY OF EACH WITNESS MUST BE SUBSCRIBED BY HIM OR HER AND

S. 4520                             4

ALL MUST BE FILED IN THE OFFICE OF THE CLERK OF THE COUNTY IN WHICH SUCH
ORDER FOR EXAMINATION IS FILED.
  S  84.  PROCEDURE  ON  HEARING. THE ORDER FOR SUCH EXAMINATION MUST BE
SIGNED BY THE JUSTICE MAKING IT AND SERVICE OF A COPY  THEREOF  WITH  AN
ENDORSEMENT  BY  THE  ATTORNEY-GENERAL SIGNED BY THE ATTORNEY-GENERAL OR
HIS OR HER DEPUTY, TO THE  EFFECT  THAT  THE  PERSON  NAMED  THEREIN  IS
REQUIRED  TO APPEAR AND BE EXAMINED AT THE TIME AND PLACE AND BEFORE THE
JUSTICE OR REFEREE SPECIFIED IN SUCH ENDORSEMENT,  SHALL  BE  SUFFICIENT
NOTICE  FOR  THE ATTENDANCE OF WITNESSES. SUCH ENDORSEMENT MAY CONTAIN A
CLAUSE REQUIRING SUCH PERSON TO PRODUCE AT SUCH EXAMINATION  ALL  BOOKS,
PAPERS  AND  DOCUMENTS  IN  HIS  OR  HER  POSSESSION OR UNDER HIS OR HER
CONTROL RELATING TO THE SUBJECT OF SUCH EXAMINATION. THE ORDER SHALL  BE
SERVED  UPON  THE  PERSON  NAMED IN THE ENDORSEMENT BY DELIVERING TO AND
LEAVING WITH HIM OR HER A CERTIFIED COPY THEREOF, ENDORSED  AS  PROVIDED
IN  THIS  SECTION, SUBJECT TO THE PAYMENT OF WITNESS FEES AND MILEAGE AS
AND WHEN PROVIDED TO BE PAID BY SUBDIVISION THREE OF SECTION  EIGHTY-TWO
OF  THIS  ARTICLE  IN  CONNECTION  WITH ATTENDANCE PURSUANT TO SUBPOENAS
AUTHORIZED TO BE ISSUED UNDER SUCH ACTION.
  S 85. APPLICATION OF PROVISIONS OF CIVIL PRACTICE LAW AND RULES.   THE
PROVISIONS  OF  THE  CIVIL  PRACTICE  LAW  AND  RULES SHALL APPLY TO ALL
ACTIONS BROUGHT UNDER THIS ARTICLE EXCEPT AS HEREIN OTHERWISE PROVIDED.
  S 86. CRIMINAL PROSECUTION. THE ATTORNEY-GENERAL MAY  PROSECUTE  EVERY
PERSON CHARGED WITH THE COMMISSION OF A CRIMINAL OFFENSE IN VIOLATION OF
THE  LAWS OF THIS STATE, APPLICABLE TO OR IN RESPECT OF THE PRACTICES OR
TRANSACTIONS WHICH IN THIS ARTICLE ARE REFERRED TO AS PUBLIC CORRUPTION.
IN ALL SUCH PROCEEDINGS, THE ATTORNEY-GENERAL MAY APPEAR IN PERSON OR BY
HIS OR HER DEPUTY BEFORE ANY COURT OF RECORD OR ANY GRAND JURY AND EXER-
CISE ALL THE POWERS AND PERFORM  ALL  THE  DUTIES  IN  RESPECT  OF  SUCH
ACTIONS  OR  PROCEEDINGS  WHICH THE DISTRICT ATTORNEY WOULD OTHERWISE BE
AUTHORIZED OR REQUIRED TO EXERCISE OR PERFORM; OR  THE  ATTORNEY-GENERAL
MAY IN HIS OR HER DISCRETION TRANSMIT EVIDENCE, PROOF AND INFORMATION AS
TO  SUCH  OFFENSE  TO THE DISTRICT ATTORNEY OF THE COUNTY OR COUNTIES IN
WHICH THE ALLEGED VIOLATION HAS OCCURRED, AND EVERY DISTRICT ATTORNEY TO
WHOM SUCH EVIDENCE, PROOF AND INFORMATION IS SO TRANSMITTED SHALL FORTH-
WITH  PROCEED  TO  PROSECUTE  ANY  PUBLIC  OFFICIAL  CHARGED  WITH  SUCH
VIOLATION.  IN  ANY  SUCH  PROCEEDING,  WHEREIN THE ATTORNEY-GENERAL HAS
APPEARED EITHER IN PERSON OR BY DEPUTY, THE DISTRICT ATTORNEY SHALL ONLY
EXERCISE SUCH POWERS AND PERFORM SUCH DUTIES AS ARE REQUIRED OF  HIM  OR
HER BY THE ATTORNEY-GENERAL OR THE DEPUTY ATTORNEY-GENERAL SO APPEARING.
  S  87. IMMUNITY. UPON ANY INVESTIGATION BEFORE THE ATTORNEY-GENERAL OR
HIS OR HER DEPUTY OR OTHER OFFICER DESIGNATED BY HIM OR HER, OR  IN  ANY
CRIMINAL PROCEEDING BEFORE ANY COURT OR GRAND JURY, PURSUANT TO OR FOR A
VIOLATION  OF ANY OF THE PROVISIONS OF THIS ARTICLE, THE ATTORNEY-GENER-
AL, HIS OR HER DEPUTY OR OTHER OFFICER DESIGNATED BY HIM OR HER, OR  THE
COURT  OR  GRAND  JURY,  MAY  CONFER  IMMUNITY  IN  ACCORDANCE  WITH THE
PROVISIONS OF SECTION 50.20 OR 190.40 OF THE CRIMINAL PROCEDURE LAW.
  S 88. APPOINTMENT OF DEPUTIES. FOR THE PURPOSES OF THIS  ARTICLE,  THE
ATTORNEY-GENERAL MAY IN HIS OR HER DISCRETION, AND WITHOUT CIVIL SERVICE
EXAMINATION,  APPOINT AND EMPLOY, AND AT PLEASURE REMOVE, SUCH DEPUTIES,
OFFICERS AND OTHER PERSONS AS HE OR SHE DEEMS NECESSARY,  AND  DETERMINE
THEIR DUTIES AND FIX THEIR COMPENSATION.
  S 2. This act shall take effect immediately.

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