Assemblyman Jim Tedisco (R,C,I-Schenectady-Saratoga) today said he will be introducing new legislation, the New York State Used Resources Accountability Act, to ensure that state government agencies conserve taxpayer dollars before trashing equipment and furniture.
The bill aims to stop government resources from being wasted by asking that all state agencies, the legislature, authorities and SUNY and CUNY schools receive authorization from the state Comptroller’s Office before trashing perfectly functional furniture, electronics, equipment or vehicles.
“Too often, state agencies will go on taxpayer-funded spending sprees purchasing new furniture and electronics when what they have is still usable or could be resold on e-bay, Craig’s List or some other auction site,” said Tedisco, former Minority Leader and current Assistant Minority Whip. “These resources are bought and paid for by taxpayers and they should be treated with respect and care and not tossed to the curb because someone wants shiny new equipment when what they currently have can get the job done.”
“Under this legislation, state agencies will need to get answers to two questions before the Comptroller gives the sign-off to discard potentially still valuable taxpayer-funded resources: Are the resources still usable for the agency and can taxpayers see a return on their investment by the agency generating revenue for the re-sale of those products?” said Tedisco. “And if the answer to those questions is 'no' then certainly, it would be of greater public benefit for these resources to be given to cash-strapped non-profit organizations than thrown out with the garbage.”
Tedisco added that this bill, which is being drafted, is a companion measure to his O.U.T. (Over-Expenditure/Under-Expenditure/Transfer-Notification of Debt) Act (A.5334) to prevent end-of-year taxpayer-funded spending splurges by some rogue state agencies that have left-over monies and rush to spend-down excess funds on unnecessary and unapproved purchases.