Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Brennan Center to Senate: This is Your First Test

Yesterday, joined by our friends from NYPIRG, the Empire Center for New York State Policy, and Common Cause/NY, we released Still Broken: New York State Legislative Reform 2008 Update. The report, an update to the Brennan Center's 2004 and 2006 studies of the New York State legislative process, finds that the legislature continues to fall short on a number of measures of legislative transparency and robustness.

The report got the attention of reporters from Newsday, The Daily News, The Albany Times Union, and Public Radio, among others. A New York Times editorial published today echoes the Brennan Center's call for change.

While the report finds that not much has improved in the past two years, we have reason to hope that this year, things will be different. In the words of report co-author Andrew Stengel:

While there isn't much to cheer about looking back in either chamber, there is the promise of substantial reform from the likely new incoming Senate majority. We hope at least one chamber will reform the rules needed to remake the legislature.

Now, the question that remains is whether the incoming Senate leadership will keep their promises.

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