senate Bill S6533

Prohibits lobbyists who are convicted of or plead guilty to class D felonies or higher level crimes from acting as a lobbyist for a period of three years

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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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actions

  • 23 / Feb / 2012
    • REFERRED TO FINANCE

Summary

Prohibits lobbyists who are convicted of or plead guilty to class D felonies or higher level crimes from acting as a lobbyist for a period of three years from the date of the conviction; provides the authority to extend suspensions; entitles such lobbyist to a hearing upon application for suspension extension.

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Bill Details

See Assembly Version of this Bill:
A9550A
Versions:
S6533
Legislative Cycle:
2011-2012
Current Committee:
Senate Finance
Law Section:
Legislative Law
Laws Affected:
Amd ยง1-o, Leg L

Sponsor Memo

BILL NUMBER:S6533

TITLE OF BILL:
An act to amend the legislative law, in relation to prohibiting lobby-
ists who are convicted of or plead guilty to class D felonies or higher
level crimes from acting as a lobbyist for a period of three years from
the date of the conviction

PURPOSE:
This bill would prohibit those convicted of a class D felony or higher
from lobbying for a period of three years. In addition, this bill would
allow the Joint Commission on Public Ethics ("JCOPE") to suspend a
lobbyist who has pled guilty or is convicted of a felony for three years
if the felony is deemed to substantially relate to such person's duties
or clients as a lobbyist.

SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS:
This bill amends section 1-o of the legislative law to add a new section
(a) that bars a person from lobbying for three years if they are
convicted of a class D felony or higher. The bill would apply to all
crimes across the board.

Amends section 1-o of the legislative law to add a new section (b) that
bars a person from lobbying for three years if they are convicted of or
plead guilty to a felony and JCOPE, upon notice determines such criminal
behavior to relate to his or her duties as a lobbyist. The bill would
apply to all crimes across the board. If a final conviction or sentence
is reduced or reversed on appeal, then such lobbyist shall be able to
re-register with the commission and re-commence lobbying.

EXISTING LAW:
New legislation.

JUSTIFICATION:
In comparison to other states such as New Jersey and Nevada, New York
State's regulations on lobbying and those allowed to register as lobby-
ists are lax. Recent events have outlined some gaping holes in these
regulations. Currently, New York does not provide a mechanism for the
suspension or outright prohibition of lobbying when someone is convicted
of serious crimes, especially crimes that indicate a blatant lack of
respect for the law. Under current New York State law, an individual
convicted of certain felonies, incarcerated or on parole would be denied
the right to vote- and yet still retain the right to serve as a lobby-
ist. This is an unfortunate loophole that this bill proposes to close by
prohibiting the practice of lobbying for those convicted of class D
felonies or higher. In addition this bill gives JCOPE the discretion to
suspend lobbyists from the practice if the crimes committed relate to
such duties.

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY:
New bill.

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS:
None to the state.

EFFECTIVE DATE:
This act shall take effect on the sixtieth day after it shall have
become a law.

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

                                  6533

                            I N  S E N A T E

                            February 23, 2012
                               ___________

Introduced  by  Sens. RIVERA, KRUEGER -- read twice and ordered printed,
  and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Finance

AN ACT to amend the legislative law, in relation to  prohibiting  lobby-
  ists who are convicted of or plead guilty to class D felonies or high-
  er  level crimes from acting as a lobbyist for a period of three years
  from the date of the conviction

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

  Section  1. Section 1-o of the legislative law, as added by chapter 14
of the laws of 2007, is amended to read as follows:
  S 1-o. Penalties. (a) ANY LOBBYIST CONVICTED OF OR PLEADING GUILTY  TO
A  CLASS D FELONY OR HIGHER LEVEL CRIME SHALL BE BARRED FROM ACTING AS A
LOBBYIST FOR A PERIOD OF THREE YEARS FROM THE DATE OF THE CONVICTION.
  (B) UPON COMPLETION THE COMMISSION SHALL  RE-EVALUATE  THE  SUSPENSION
AND  DETERMINE  WHETHER OR NOT SUCH SUSPENSION SHOULD BE EXTENDED FOR AN
ADDITIONAL PERIOD OF TIME. IN NO EVENT SHALL SUCH EXTENSION BE FOR  MORE
THAN  TWO  MORE  YEARS.  ANY  LOBBYIST  WISHING  TO RE-REGISTER WITH THE
COMMISSION AND RE-COMMENCE HIS OR HER  PRACTICE  OF  LOBBYING  SHALL  BE
ENTITLED  TO  A  HEARING UPON APPLICATION TO DETERMINE IF THE SUSPENSION
SHOULD BE EXTENDED UNDER THIS SUBDIVISION.
  (C) (i) Any lobbyist, public corporation, or client who knowingly  and
wilfully  fails  to  file  timely a report or statement required by this
section or knowingly and wilfully files false information  or  knowingly
and wilfully violates section one-m of this article shall be guilty of a
class A misdemeanor; and
  (ii)  any  lobbyist,  public  corporation, or client who knowingly and
wilfully fails to file timely a report or  statement  required  by  this
section  or  knowingly and wilfully files false information or knowingly
and wilfully violates section one-m of this article, after having previ-
ously been convicted in the preceding five years of the crime  described
in paragraph (i) of this subdivision, shall be guilty of a class E felo-
ny.  Any  lobbyist convicted of or pleading guilty to a felony under the
provisions of this [section] SUBDIVISION may be barred from acting as  a
lobbyist  for  a period of one year from the date of the conviction. For

 EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                      [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                           LBD14724-02-2

S. 6533                             2

the purposes of this subdivision, the chief  administrative  officer  of
any  organization  required  to  file a statement or report shall be the
person responsible for making and filing such statement or report unless
some other person prior to the due date thereof has been duly designated
to make and file such statement or report.
  [(b)]  (D) (i) A lobbyist, public corporation, or client who knowingly
and wilfully fails to  file  a  statement  or  report  within  the  time
required  for  the  filing  of  such  report  or  knowingly and wilfully
violates section one-m of this article  shall  be  subject  to  a  civil
penalty  for  each such failure or violation, in an amount not to exceed
the greater of twenty-five thousand dollars or three  times  the  amount
the   person  failed  to  report  properly  or  unlawfully  contributed,
expended, gave or received, to be assessed by the commission.
  (ii) A lobbyist, public  corporation,  or  client  who  knowingly  and
wilfully  files  a false statement or report shall be subject to a civil
penalty, in an amount not  to  exceed  the  greater  of  fifty  thousand
dollars  or  five times the amount the person failed to report properly,
to be assessed by the commission.
  (iii)(A) A lobbyist or client who knowingly and wilfully violates  the
provisions  of subdivision one of section one-n of this article shall be
subject to a civil penalty not to exceed ten  thousand  dollars  for  an
initial violation.
  (B)  If,  after  a  lobbyist or client has been found to have violated
subdivision one of section one-n of this article, a lobbyist  or  client
knowingly  and  wilfully  violates  the provisions of subdivision one of
section one-n of this article within four years  of  such  finding,  the
lobbyist  or  client  shall  be subject to a civil penalty not to exceed
twenty-five thousand dollars.
  (iv) Any lobbyist or client that knowingly and wilfully fails to  file
a  statement  or  report within the time required for the filing of such
report, knowingly and wilfully files a false  statement  or  report,  or
knowingly  and  wilfully  violates  section one-m of this article, after
having been found by the commission to have knowing and wilfully commit-
ted such conduct or violation  in  the  preceding  five  years,  may  be
subject  to  a  determination  that the lobbyist or client is prohibited
from engaging in lobbying activities, as that term is defined  in  para-
graph  (v)  of  subdivision  (c) of section one-c of this article, for a
period of one year.
  (v) Any lobbyist or client that  knowingly  and  wilfully  engages  in
lobbying  activities, as that term is defined in paragraph (v) of subdi-
vision (c) of section one-c of this article, during the period in  which
they  are  prohibited from engaging in lobbying activities, as that term
is defined in paragraph (v) of subdivision (c) of section one-c of  this
article  pursuant to this subdivision, may be subject to a determination
that the lobbyist or client is  prohibited  from  engaging  in  lobbying
activities,  as that term is defined in paragraph (v) of subdivision (c)
of section one-c of this article, for a period of up to four years,  and
shall  be  subject  to  a  civil  penalty  not  to exceed fifty thousand
dollars, plus a civil penalty in an amount equal to five times the value
of any gift, compensation  or  benefit  received  as  a  result  of  the
violation.
  (vi)  A  lobbyist,  public  corporation,  or  client who knowingly and
wilfully fails to retain their records pursuant to  paragraph  three  of
subdivision  (c)  of  section one-e of this article, subparagraph (v) of
paragraph five of subdivision (b) of section one-h of this  article,  or
paragraph five of subdivision (b) of section one-j of this article shall

S. 6533                             3

be  subject  to a civil penalty in an amount of two thousand dollars per
violation to be assessed by the commission.
  [(c)]  (E)  (i)  Any  assessment or order to debar shall be determined
only after a hearing at which the party shall  be  entitled  to  appear,
present evidence and be heard. Any assessment or order to debar pursuant
to this section may only be imposed after the commission sends by certi-
fied  and  first-class mail written notice of intent to assess a penalty
or order to debar and the basis for the penalty or order to  debar.  Any
assessment  may be recovered in an action brought by the attorney gener-
al.
  (ii) In assessing any fine or penalty pursuant to  this  section,  the
commission shall consider: (A) as a mitigating factor that the lobbyist,
public  corporation or client has not previously been required to regis-
ter, and (B) as an aggravating factor that the lobbyist,  public  corpo-
ration  or  client has had fines or penalties assessed against it in the
past. The amount of compensation expended, incurred or received shall be
a factor to consider in determining a proportionate penalty.
  (iii) Any lobbyist, public corporation or client who receives a notice
of intent to assess a penalty for knowingly and wilfully failing to file
a report or statement pursuant to subdivision [(b)] (D) of this  section
and  who  has  never  previously received a notice of intent to assess a
penalty for failing to file a report or statement  required  under  this
section shall be granted fifteen days within which to file the statement
of  registration  or report without being subject to the fine or penalty
set forth in subdivision [(b)] (D) of this section. Upon the failure  of
such  lobbyist, public corporation or client to file within such fifteen
day period, such lobbyist, public corporation or client shall be subject
to a fine or penalty pursuant to subdivision [(b)] (D) of this section.
  [(d)] (F) All moneys recovered by the attorney general or received  by
the commission from the assessment of civil penalties authorized by this
section shall be deposited to the general fund.
  S  2.  This  act  shall take effect on the sixtieth day after it shall
have become a law.

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