For Immediate Release Common Cause/NY Unveils Campaign to Put Council Members on the Record re: Rules Reform

Written by Susan Lerner on March 14, 2013


For Immediate Release:

Contact:

March 14, 2013

Susan Lerner, 212-691-6421

Common Cause/NY Unveils Campaign to Put Council Members on the Record re: Rules Reform

Paid Sick Time Act has majority support but hasn't been put to a vote in the three years since its introduction

As part of its continuing effort to identify legislative best practices, Common Cause/NY unveiled a new campaign to survey all 51 members of the City Council regarding their answer to the following questions:

1. Do you believe that the NYC Paid Sick Time Act deserves to receive a vote this session?

2. Do you support developing procedural reforms that would allow bills with strong support to get a vote on the floor?

Common Cause/NY has been surveying members and will be asking its thousands of New York City members to help by calling the representatives in the council who have not answered, and pose the same questions. The responses of each councilmember to Common Cause/NY's questions will be posted on its website: www.commoncause.org/ny/NYCCouncilVoting.

Read the full letter here.

Common Cause/NY has long been critical of the centralization of power within the Speaker's office, and its deleterious effect on the functioning of democracy. The Paid Sick Time Act is merely an example of a larger problem whereby bills win majority support and either fail to receive a committee hearing, or have a hearing but never received a vote. The Human Rights Project's New York City Council 2012 Human Rights Report Card, details 7 such bills with 26 or more sponsors (a majority of the Council).

The fact that the Paid Sick Time Act, which is co-sponsored by a majority of the members of the Council, has not yet come up for a vote in the three years since it was first introduced is the most recent manifestation of this problem.

Background

In February, Common Cause/NY sent letters to the five reported candidates for Speaker of the NYC Council asking for their position on a number of rules reform proposals. The letter can be viewed here.

Office: Common Cause New York

Common Cause is a nonpartisan grassroots organization dedicated to upholding the core values of American democracy. We work to create open, honest, and accountable government that serves the public interest; promote equal rights, opportunity, and representation for all; and empower all people to make their voices heard in the political process.

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