Expanded Comment on New State Ethics Bill by Susan Lerner

For Immediate Release:

Contact: Susan Lerner

June 3, 2011


Expanded Comment on New State Ethics Bill by Susan Lerner

Executive Director of Common Cause NY :

“The ethics reform package announced today is a large and significant step forward for ethics oversight in New York State. For the first time, both New York’s legislators and executive branch officials will be subject to external oversight by one body, a change for which Common Cause NY has advocated for many years. No longer will the public have to rely on the willingness of its elected officials to voluntarily disclose information about their outside income or potential conflicts of interest, because those officials will now be required to provide more detailed disclosures of their sources of income that are available to the public.

“Innovative measures, such as requiring groups that spend above a threshold amount on lobbying to disclose their donors, recapturing pension benefits from officials guilty of public corruption, and the establishment of a database of individuals and companies that have dealings with state agencies help move New York closer to regaining its position as a reform innovator. Because no measure is perfect, we will have an opportunity to comment and improve on the new procedures set up by this bill once we have seen how they work through a specified evaluation and review process.

“Common Cause NY looks forward to working with the Governor and the legislative leaders on the next step in reforming Albany: providing New York with comprehensive and effective campaign finance reform.”