Squadron: ALEC Claims to Have Introduced 39 Bills in 2010; Three Current Bills in Senate Closely Based on ALEC Model Legislation
Senator Says ALEC's Activities Appear to Constitute Lobbying Under NY Law and JCOPE Guidance
ALBANY -- Today, State Senator Daniel Squadron, the ranking member of the Senate Investigations and Government Operations Committee, urged the Senate to hold a committee hearing on the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) and its activities that may constitute lobbying and raise questions about its role in the state.
In a letter to Majority Leader Dean Skelos and Committee Chair Carl Marcellino, Squadron laid out ALEC's activities in New York, including that it claims to have introduced 39 pieces of "model legislation" in the legislature in 2010. While it is unclear whether those 39 bills are still active, analysis strongly indicates that at least three bills currently moving through the legislature - S281 ("Stand Your Ground" legislation), S5769 (prohibiting regulation of Voice over Internet Protocol services), and S7112 (a voter ID bill) - are closely based on ALEC's model legislation.
The VoIP legislation passed the Senate on Tuesday. Video of the floor debate is available here.
"ALEC's activities give the appearance of lobbying based on both New York State law and JCOPE's guidelines," wrote Squadron. "ALEC seems to engage in activity intended to influence the passage of legislation in New York State, to draft model legislation itself, and to receive significant compensation from corporations to do so. Its role and its influence in New York State government must be addressed."
The full letter is available below.