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CLICK HERE for Video of Serrano Comments on NY-SPAN Public Meeting
CLICK HERE for Press Release Regarding Board's First Report
(Albany, NY)- Senator José M. Serrano (D-Manhattan/Bronx) today co-chaired a public meeting of the Joint Advisory Board on the Broadcast of Government Proceedings, to discuss the expansion of a New York State Legislative television channel.
"What we heard here today reiterates what we've been thinking and feeling all along- that if we have a government affairs channel free of political influence, and if we utilize best practices and follow the C-SPAN national model, we will create a channel that will inspire tremendous confidence across our state,"" said Serrano, who serves as the Co-chair of the Joint Advisory Board, with Assembly Majority Leader Ron Canestrari.
Also on the Joint Advisory Board from the Senate, are Senators John Bonacic (R- Mt. Hope), Andrea Stewart-Cousins (D- Yonkers) and David J. Valesky (D- Oneida). The board, which recently released their first report, was created to make recommendations for expanding current programming on the Legislative Television channel and for creating a statewide public affairs channel.
The Board heard statements from Blair Horner, Legislative Director for the NYPIRG; Susan Lerner, Executive Director of Common Cause New York; and Tim Rooney, President and CEO of The Cable Telecommunications Association of New York, Inc.
The work of the Joint Advisory Board is a nonpartisan effort to increase transparency in the Legislature by providing the public with greater televised access to state government. Meetings have been held for the past two months, during which the members have discussed the technical, logistical, and organizational challenges of expanding the channel's coverage of state government. The board has also worked closely with New York State good government groups, who have made various substantive suggestions on how to make this a successful, nonpartisan, innovative resource for the people of New York.
"We applaud the Joint Advisory Board, led by Senator José Serrano and Assembly Majority Leader Ron Canestrari, for its commitment to open up the Legislative process with a public affairs channel so that ordinary New Yorkers can see and understand what their representatives do in Albany," said Susan Lerner, Executive Director of Common Cause/NY.
"The exceptional level of cooperation between the two chambers bodes well for actually realizing the long-term dream of a public access channel for state government. The hearing held this morning was a great opportunity to discuss this public affairs channel out in the open before its actual inception. As long-time supporters of the creation of such a channel, we appreciated the opportunity to participate this morning and we look forward to continuing this public discussion through the upcoming meetings the Joint Advisory Board expects to host."