ALBANY – Senator Catharine Young (R,C,I- 57th District) announced Friday that an agreement has been reached with the Governor and the Assembly to take aggressive action against public corruption.
Legislation, which incorporates key ethics priorities put forward by Senator Young and her Republican colleagues, will toughen elections, lobbying, and ethics enforcement laws, and require elected officials and policy makers convicted of corruption to forfeit their public pensions.
“Promoting faith in government is the only way for hardworking New Yorkers to trust that those in power are being held accountable. Pension forfeiture has been a priority for me, because I believe that those who violate the public trust shouldn’t be able to cash in on the backs of hardworking taxpayers. This agreement requires any legislator or policymaker who is convicted of a crime related to their public office, regardless of when that individual entered service or was elected to office, to forfeit their taxpayer funded retirement,” said Senator Young.
The Five Point Plan includes:
· tough independent expenditure reforms that end coordination in political campaigns;
· pension forfeiture for legislators and other policy makers;
· disclosure requirements for political consultants;
· restructuring of guidelines for lobbyists; and
· issue advocacy reforms.
“Tightening our campaign finance laws, including expressly prohibiting specific examples of coordination, will bring sunlight and transparency by letting people know who is truly speaking to them. These reforms also establish greater clarity when it comes to the identity of those funding an advocacy effort. Finally, the agreement protects freedom of the press, by excluding communications between journalists and advocates from being regulated,” Senator Young said.