April 2, 2015

Speaker Heastie Statement on Ethics Reform

From the start, I vowed to enact comprehensive ethics reform this legislative session and crack down on those who abuse the public's trust. I am proud of the steps we have taken as part of the State Budget to increase disclosure of outside income, improve transparency and accountability, and strengthen the ban on campaign funds for personal use. We must continue to be vigilant to ensure that New Yorkers have the utmost confidence that state government is working for the people. Within the budget bill the Assembly passed this week was a strong pension forfeiture measure that provides for pension forfeiture for state officers, including legislators, who are convicted of public corruption. For this to apply to officials who entered the retirement system before enactment of the pension forfeiture law in 2011, we need to adopt a resolution amending the State Constitution. The Assembly will adopt an implementing resolution to accomplish this when we return to Session.