Oaks Supports Measures Promoting Ethics Reform In New York State Government

February 14, 2007

Assemblyman Bob Oaks (R,C-Macedon) today announced the Assembly Minority supported legislation to bring ethics reform to New York state government.

Oaks and the Assembly Minority proposed two amendments in an attempt to strengthen the Ethics Reform Bill. The first would prohibit those convicted of a felony, due to violating the public officers’ law, from collecting their state pensions and the second would require a public hearing on the ethics reform act prior to it being enacted into law. However, they were defeated by the Assembly Majority.

“We all know our current state government needs reform,” said Oaks. “That is why I am pleased the Assembly passed legislation today that will help establish a more open and accountable state government.”

Reforms in the agreement include prohibiting legislators from accepting gifts from lobbyists, prohibiting non-legislative employees to compel employees to make political contributions, preventing the candidacy of agency heads for a paid elected office, prohibiting candidates and elected officials from appearing in taxpayer-funded ads and creating a new thirteen-member state commission on public integrity.

“While these reform measures are a step in the right direction, I am disappointed the amendments offered by the Assembly Minority were not included,” added Oaks. “Prohibiting convicted felons from collecting their state pensions and requiring public hearings on ethics reform would have promoted greater accountability in our state government. I hope we will include important measures like these in future ethics reform deliberations.”