Last week, Attorney General Eric Schneiderman announced that he has proposed an ethics reform package that is intended to prod Gov. Cuomo and the Legislature to take action on ethics and campaign finance reforms. The bill has been introduced in the Assembly.
The Attorney General’s legislation includes:
- Banning outside income for state legislators;
- Increasing legislative salaries;
- Increasing legislative terms from two to four years (which requires a constitutional amendment);
- Authorizing the Attorney General’s office to investigate and criminally prosecute public corruption;
- Enacting a new crime for ‘undisclosed self-dealing’;
- Creating a public-matching system of campaign finance;
- Lowering campaign contribution limits; and
- Limiting campaign contributions from lobbyists.
Unshackle Upstate has been very outspoken in our opposition to the public funding of political campaigns (be sure to check out our white paper on the issue if you haven’t already). But some of the Attorney General’s other ideas may be worth considering, given the recent corruption news coming out of Albany.