Monday, November 27, 2006

Join the Conversation!

On Election Day, we opened up ReformNY to comments, and we want to hear from you! Tell us what you think about the tough issues facing New York!

Here's one great comment from John O'Neil:

With every Election Day there is good news and bad news.

Starting with the good news – with virtually no turnover in the state legislative elections your Assemblymember's and Senator's contact information is probably the same.

The bad news is that there is much left for us to do to help our legislators enact the reforms it so desperately needs and time is short. At the beginning of each session, in early January, the Assembly and the Senate vote to enact the rules that will govern their houses for the next two years.

Prior to that the Republicans and Democrats hold private caucus "workshops" where the legislative agenda and rules are discussed and most likely decided before the official opening.

In the most recent Brennan Center report there are four necessary changes that will help our legislature do what it's sent to Albany for: to be a representative, deliberative, accessible, accountable and efficient legislative body.

The changes are: (1) strengthening the committee process, (2) institutionalizing conference committees, and, at the leadership level, (3) ending the Speaker's and Majority Leader's complete control over resources and staff, and (4) ending their ability to block bills from getting to the floor.

Something you can do – Call, write, or send an e-mail to your legislators, starting this Monday, to inform them about your continued concern over the broken process and to insist that they consider the four reforms above in their pre-session caucus meetings.

Some helpful links:

Categories: General, Legislative Rules

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