Assemblymen Conte, Saladino Make Strides in Reforming Albany
January 14, 2005
The state Assembly on Jan. 11 took positive steps toward reforming the way it conducts business. After months of debate, it was bipartisanship and a push from two Long Island assemblymen that helped lead to a vote of 143-1 solidifying reform adoption. These two local assemblymen stood at the forefront of the reform debate and helped deliver these much-needed changes. "For years I have been advancing a number of rules reforms with my Assembly minority colleagues to provide a Legislature more open to the needs of the people. The Assembly minority conference and I advanced these reforms last week, and now they’re a reality. The hard work has paid off with this significant step in the right direction," Assemblyman James Conte (R,C-Huntington Station) stated. "It was with great pride that I endorsed these constructive measures," Assemblyman Joseph Saladino (R,C,I-Massapequa) said. "It was obvious that rules reform must be addressed to restore the Assembly’s ability to govern, break roadblocks and foster a more fair government. Still, in the coming months, more legislative and governmental reforms must be adopted." The reforms enacted during the historic legislative session include:
- An end to empty-seat voting by requiring a slow, roll-call vote on each bill
- Establishment of Tuesday sessions to provide greater review and debate of legislation
- Creation of legislative subcommittees to provide increased member input in the legislation development process
- Renewed efforts for creation of a statewide public service cable TV channel to televise Assembly sessions and report on state government news.