Senate Update - June 26, 2009
NYS Senator Eric Adams: Friday, June 26, 2009 Senate Update
The Senate Minority and Majority attended special sessions at separate times. Senate Majority Leader Malcolm Smith met with the senators from the Majority party at noon and Minority Leader Dean Skelos met with members of the Minority immediately thereafter. At a conference held after the sessions, the Majority discussed possible further meetings with Senator Skelos and members of his Minority conference to encourage them to sign onto our power-sharing proposal.
The bipartisan agreement that my fellow Majority members and I support would enable the Senate to put aside the controversy surrounding leadership and come together to discuss bills set to expire due to sunset provisions. The New York City school governance legislation and other important measures require renewal before the end of June.
Senator Skelos and the Minority conference refuse to accept a power-sharing agreement and instead have filed suit against the Secretary of the Senate, bringing a patently frivolous claim in an unscrupulous attempt to usurp the post that controls the sessions and records of the Senate.
Governor Paterson has also filed papers in court, seeking a judge’s ruling on whether either Senate conference has violated executive order by refusing to hold joint sessions.
The Minority party remains unwilling to engage in productive conversation on sunsetting legislation, demanding first that Senator Espada be made President pro tempore. This position would allow him control over the entire Senate and place him first in line of succession to the office of the Governor, a manifestly unacceptable condition which we roundly reject.
I will remain in Albany over the weekend, not only to attend the special session called by the Governor, but also to encourage my colleagues to sit down and work out a bi-partisan agreement. I call on my fellow Senators to put aside their differences in order to enact crucial legislation.