senate Bill S2966

Prohibits the use of official position for political fundraising

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Sponsor

Bill Status


  • Introduced
  • In Committee
  • On Floor Calendar
    • Passed Senate
    • Passed Assembly
  • Delivered to Governor
  • Signed/Vetoed by Governor
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actions

  • 28 / Jan / 2013
    • REFERRED TO FINANCE
  • 08 / Jan / 2014
    • REFERRED TO FINANCE

Summary

Prohibits the use or exploitation of official position by an officer or employee of a state agency for political fundraising as a standard of ethics for state employees; makes unlawful use of official position, in the first or second degree, to engage in political fundraising a class E felony and class A misdemeanor, respectively.

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Bill Details

See Assembly Version of this Bill:
A2100
Versions:
S2966
Legislative Cycle:
2013-2014
Current Committee:
Senate Finance
Law Section:
Public Officers Law
Laws Affected:
Amd §74, Pub Off L; add §§200.28 & 200.29, Pen L
Versions Introduced in Previous Legislative Cycles:
2011-2012: S1847, A5906
2009-2010: A7392, A7392

Sponsor Memo

BILL NUMBER:S2966

TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the public officers law and the penal
law, in relation to prohibiting the use of an official position for
political fundraising

PURPOSE: To limit and guard against public officials using the informa-
tion and influence of their policymaking public positions to raise funds
for political candidates.

SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS: The bill also adds two new paragraphs to section
seventy-four of the public officers law to prohibit officers and employ-
ees of a state agency and other policy makers from using their public
position or information gained through that position to raise funds for
political candidates.

The bill also adds two new sections to the penal law making it illegal
for a person to exploit his or her official position in a state agency
or as a policy maker to solicit funds or allow his or her name to be
used to solicit funds for a political candidate. Criminal penalties
include a class A misdemeanor and a class E felony.

JUSTIFICATION: This bill strengthens the limitations on certain state
public officers from using their position to raise funds for political
candidates. The measure attempts to strike at a widespread and corro-
sive practice of public officials soliciting campaign contributions or
support from public employees or entities doing business with govern-
ment. This practice inevitably leads to a strong potential for abuse and
one that district attorneys should be able to curtail with a strong and
distinct statute. New York City has already enacted such limitations and
embodies recommendations of the New York State Commission on Government
Integrity as contained in its June 1989 report entitled "The Midas
Touch: Campaign Finance Practices of Statewide Officeholders."

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: 04/07/09 REFERRED TO FINANCE 01/06/10 REFERRED TO
FINANCE 01/13/11 REFERRED TO FINANCE 01/04/12 REFERRED TO FINANCE

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: None.

EFFECTIVE DATE: This act shall take effect immediately provided that
section three of this act shall take effect on the first of November
next succeeding the date on which it shall have become law.

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

                                  2966

                       2013-2014 Regular Sessions

                            I N  S E N A T E

                            January 28, 2013
                               ___________

Introduced  by  Sen.  GIPSON -- read twice and ordered printed, and when
  printed to be committed to the Committee on Finance

AN ACT to amend the public officers law and the penal law,  in  relation
  to prohibiting the use of an official position for political fundrais-
  ing

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

  Section 1. It is the intent of this legislation to declare that public
officers have a responsibility to ensure that  their  conduct  will  not
violate  the  public  trust  placed  in  them. Public officers must make
certain that their conduct will not raise any  suspicions  or  give  the
impression that they are acting in violation of such public trust. It is
important  that  the legislature set forth the high standards of ethical
conduct to which public officials are expected to adhere.
  S 2. Subdivision 3 of section 74 of the public officers law is amended
by adding two new paragraphs j and k to read as follows:
  J. NO OFFICER OR EMPLOYEE OF A STATE AGENCY SHALL ATTEMPT  TO  EXPLOIT
OR  OTHERWISE USE HIS OR HER OFFICIAL POSITION FOR THE PURPOSE OF ASKING
FOR OR REQUESTING POLITICAL CONTRIBUTIONS ON BEHALF OF ANY CANDIDATE FOR
PUBLIC OFFICE OR POLITICAL COMMITTEE, NOR SHALL SUCH OFFICER OR EMPLOYEE
USE ANY INFORMATION GAINED BY REASON OF HIS OR HER OFFICIAL POSITION FOR
THE PURPOSE OF ASKING FOR OR REQUESTING POLITICAL CONTRIBUTIONS.
  K. NO OFFICER OR EMPLOYEE OF A STATE AGENCY WHO HOLDS THE POSITION  OF
COMMISSIONER,  DIRECTOR,  SUPERINTENDENT, CHAIR, BOARD MEMBER, EXECUTIVE
DIRECTOR, PRESIDENT, CHIEF ADMINISTRATOR, OR OTHER POSITION OF  ULTIMATE
AGENCY RESPONSIBILITY SHALL SOLICIT POLITICAL CONTRIBUTIONS ON BEHALF OF
ANY CANDIDATE FOR PUBLIC OFFICE OR POLITICAL COMMITTEE, OR PERMIT HIS OR
HER NAME TO BE USED FOR POLITICAL FUNDRAISING.
  S  3.  The  penal law is amended by adding two new sections 200.28 and
200.29 to read as follows:
S 200.28 UNLAWFUL USE OF AN OFFICIAL POSITION IN THE FIRST DEGREE.

 EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                      [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                           LBD03199-01-3

S. 2966                             2

  A PERSON IS GUILTY OF UNLAWFUL USE OF  AN  OFFICIAL  POSITION  IN  THE
FIRST  DEGREE  WHEN HE OR SHE KNOWINGLY ATTEMPTS TO EXPLOIT OR OTHERWISE
USES HIS OR HER OFFICIAL POSITION OR INFORMATION  GAINED  BY  VIRTUE  OF
THAT  POSITION  AS AN OFFICER OR EMPLOYEE OF A STATE AGENCY TO ENGAGE IN
POLITICAL  FUNDRAISING,  OR  FOR THE PURPOSE OF ASKING FOR OR REQUESTING
POLITICAL CONTRIBUTIONS.
  UNLAWFUL USE OF AN OFFICIAL POSITION IN THE FIRST DEGREE IS A CLASS  E
FELONY.
S 200.29 UNLAWFUL USE OF AN OFFICIAL POSITION IN THE SECOND DEGREE.
  A  PERSON  IS  GUILTY  OF  UNLAWFUL USE OF AN OFFICIAL POSITION IN THE
SECOND DEGREE WHEN HE OR SHE IS AN OFFICER OR EMPLOYEE OF A STATE AGENCY
WHO HOLDS THE POSITION OF COMMISSIONER, DIRECTOR, SUPERINTENDENT, CHAIR,
BOARD MEMBER, EXECUTIVE  DIRECTOR,  PRESIDENT,  CHIEF  ADMINISTRATOR  OR
OTHER POSITION OF ULTIMATE AGENCY RESPONSIBILITY AND HE OR SHE KNOWINGLY
SOLICITS  POLITICAL  CONTRIBUTIONS ON BEHALF OF ANY CANDIDATE FOR PUBLIC
OFFICE OR A POLITICAL COMMITTEE, OR KNOWINGLY PERMITS HIS OR HER NAME TO
BE USED FOR POLITICAL FUNDRAISING.
  UNLAWFUL USE OF AN OFFICIAL POSITION IN THE SECOND DEGREE IS A CLASS A
MISDEMEANOR.
  S 4. This act shall take effect  immediately;  provided  that  section
three  of  this  act  shall  take  effect  on the first of November next
succeeding the date on which it shall have become a law.

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