A04446 Summary:

BILL NOA04446
 
SAME ASSAME AS S04541
 
SPONSORDiPietro
 
COSPNSRSalka, Brabenec, Manktelow, Angelino, Gallahan
 
MLTSPNSR
 
Ren Art 20 to be Art 21, add Art 20, Art 9 §4, Art 8 §§2-b & 2-c, Art 11, Art 19 §4, Art 5 §1, amd Art 19 §2, rpld Art 11, Art 5 §1, Art 3 §6, Constn
 
Proposes a constitutional amendment to divide the state into three autonomous regions; the New Amsterdam Region, the New York Region and the Montauk Region; provides regional governors and regional legislators; provides only for a state sales tax; divides various departments and agencies; provides for separate court systems and prison systems.
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A04446 Actions:

BILL NOA04446
 
02/04/2021referred to local governments
02/08/2021to attorney-general for opinion
03/09/2021opinion referred to judiciary
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A04446 Committee Votes:

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A04446 Floor Votes:

There are no votes for this bill in this legislative session.
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A04446 Text:



 
                STATE OF NEW YORK
        ________________________________________________________________________
 
                                          4446
 
                               2021-2022 Regular Sessions
 
                   IN ASSEMBLY
 
                                    February 4, 2021
                                       ___________
 
        Introduced by M. of A. DiPIETRO -- read once and referred to the Commit-
          tee on Local Governments
 
                    CONCURRENT RESOLUTION OF THE SENATE AND ASSEMBLY
 
        proposing  the  addition  of  a  new  article 20 to the constitution, in
          relation to dividing New York state  into  three  autonomous  regions;
          proposing  an  amendment to article 8 of the constitution, in relation
          to local, school and special district budgets; proposing an  amendment
          to  article  9  of  the  constitution  in relation to formation of new
          towns; proposing an amendment to  section  2  of  article  19  of  the
          constitution,  in relation to the constitutional convention; proposing
          an amendment to article 11 of the constitution, in relation to  public
          education;  proposing  an amendment to article 19 of the constitution,
          in relation to limiting voting on a  new  constitution;  proposing  an
          amendment  to  article  5 of the constitution, in relation to officers
          and civil departments; repealing article 11 of the constitution relat-
          ing to education; repealing section 6 of article 3 of the constitution
          relating to the state legislature; and repealing section 1 of  article
          5 of the constitution relating to officers and civil departments
 
     1    Section  1.  Resolved  (if  the Senate concur), That article 20 of the
     2  constitution be renumbered article 21 and a new article 20 be  added  to
     3  read as follows:
     4                                 ARTICLE XX
     5                                   REGIONS
 
     6    Section  1. The state of New York shall be divided into three Regions:
     7  the New Amsterdam Region, the New York Region and the Montauk Region.
     8    (a) The New York Region shall consist of the counties of Bronx, Kings,
     9  New York, Queens and Richmond.
    10    (b) The New Amsterdam Region shall consist of the counties of  Albany,
    11  Allegany,  Broome,  Cattaraugus,  Cayuga, Chautauqua, Chemung, Chenango,
    12  Clinton, Columbia, Cortland, Delaware, Dutchess, Erie, Essex,  Franklin,
    13  Fulton,  Genesee,  Greene, Hamilton, Herkimer, Jefferson, Lewis, Living-
 
         EXPLANATION--Matter in italics (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                              [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                                   LBD89018-01-1

        A. 4446                             2
 
     1  ston, Madison, Monroe, Montgomery, Niagara, Oneida,  Onondaga,  Ontario,
     2  Orange,  Orleans, Oswego, Otsego, Putnam, Rensselaer, Saratoga, Schenec-
     3  tady, Schoharie, Schuyler,  Seneca,  St.  Lawrence,  Steuben,  Sullivan,
     4  Tioga, Tompkins, Ulster, Warren, Washington, Wayne, Wyoming, and Yates.
     5    (c)  The  Montauk  Region  shall  consist  of  the counties of Nassau,
     6  Suffolk, Rockland, and Westchester.
     7    (d) Any new counties not listed shall be assigned by state law to  the
     8  correct Region.
     9    (e)  The  New Amsterdam Regional capital shall be within Albany County
    10  unless the New Amsterdam  Region  by  Regional  law  picks  a  different
    11  location.  The New York Regional capital shall be within Richmond County
    12  unless the New York Region by Regional law picks a  different  location.
    13  The  Montauk  Regional capital shall be within Westchester County unless
    14  the Montauk Region by Regional law picks a different location.
    15    § 2. (a) The legislative power of each Region shall be vested  in  two
    16  houses;  a  Regional Senate and a Regional Assembly, whose members shall
    17  be elected by the United States citizens who are  18  years  of  age  or
    18  older  and  reside in their respective districts.  Regional Assemblyper-
    19  sons and Regional Senators must be a United  States  citizen  and  be  a
    20  resident  of  the  respective  district  or reside within seven miles of
    21  their respective district.
    22    (b) Regional Senators will also serve in the New  York  State  Senate;
    23  Regional Assemblypersons also will serve in the New York State Assembly.
    24    (c)  New Amsterdam Regional Senate shall have 24 Senators, the Montauk
    25  Region shall have 12 Senators, and the New York  Regional  Senate  shall
    26  have 34 Senators.
    27    (d) (i) The number of New Amsterdam Regional Assembly members shall be
    28  calculated  by  dividing  the  population of the New Amsterdam Region by
    29  125,000 and rounded upward to the nearest odd whole number.
    30    (ii) The number of New York Regional Assembly members shall be  calcu-
    31  lated  by  dividing the population of the New York Region by 125,000 and
    32  rounded upward to the nearest odd whole number.
    33    (iii) The number of Montauk Regional Assembly members shall be  calcu-
    34  lated by dividing the population of Montauk Region by 125,000 and round-
    35  ed upward to the nearest odd whole number.
    36    (e)  Each  federal census taken decennially shall be controlling as to
    37  the number of inhabitants in the state  or  any  part  thereof  for  the
    38  purposes  of  the apportionment of members of the assembly and readjust-
    39  ment or alteration of Regional senate and assembly districts next occur-
    40  ring in so far as such census and the tabulation thereof purport to give
    41  the information necessary therefor. The first year  after  this  Article
    42  takes  effect  the  Court  of Appeals shall draw the Regional Senate and
    43  Assembly  districts;  thereafter  each  Regional  Legislature  shall  by
    44  Regional  law  draw  contiguous Senate and Assembly districts of roughly
    45  equal population for that Region; however one Assembly district and  one
    46  Senate  district may include parts of Westchester and Nassau counties if
    47  needed to keep districts roughly equal in population. Regional Assembly-
    48  persons and Regional Senators terms will be two years.  The  term  shall
    49  start at noon on December 1st following their election and end two years
    50  later  at  noon on December 1st. No town shall have more than one assem-
    51  blyperson unless its population exceeds the population  required  for  a
    52  Regional assembly district.
    53    (f) Each Regional Legislature shall hold its regular session in months
    54  of  January,  February,  and March of each year adjourning no later than
    55  March 20th. Each Regional senator shall have one vote in their  Regional

        A. 4446                             3
 
     1  senate.  Each  Regional  assemblyperson  shall  have  one  vote in their
     2  Regional assembly.
     3    (g) The fiscal year of each Region will be from March 1 to last day of
     4  February  of  the  following year.   If at noon on the date a new fiscal
     5  year starts all the appropriate region's budget appropriation bills  and
     6  revenue  bills have not been enacted into law, then that region's previ-
     7  ous fiscal year's budget shall become that region's default budget. Once
     8  a regional default budget takes  effect,  no  part  of  the  appropriate
     9  proposed regional executive budget shall be enacted into law. The appro-
    10  priations  shall remain the same as the previous fiscal year's appropri-
    11  ation laws. The appropriations given to each county, city, town, village
    12  or school district shall also remain the same as that region's  previous
    13  fiscal  year. No moneys may be transferred between appropriation laws or
    14  other changes to default budget may be enacted, unless approved  by  new
    15  supplemental  regional appropriation bill(s) which are enacted into law.
    16  Any appropriations that were designed to be non-recurring appropriations
    17  shall be dropped from the default regional budget. Supplemental regional
    18  appropriation bill(s) voted on between April 1st and  December  31st  of
    19  any calendar year shall require at least three-fifths (3/5) vote of both
    20  of  the appropriate regional legislature's houses with the ayes and nays
    21  entered on the journal, to be enacted. The default regional budget shall
    22  be treated as a regular regional budget and expire at  the  end  of  the
    23  fiscal  year. Supplemental regional appropriation bill(s) are any appro-
    24  priation bill created by the appropriate regional legislature.
    25    (h) The following consolidated chapters of New York  State  law  shall
    26  become the Regional laws of each Region: Abandoned Property, Agriculture
    27  and  Markets, Alcoholic Beverage Control, Alternative County Government,
    28  Arts and Cultural Affairs, Banking, Benevolent Orders,  Boxing  Sparring
    29  and  Wrestling,  Business  Corporation,  Canal,  Civil  Practice Law and
    30  Rules, Civil Rights, Civil Service  (Regional  and  Local),  Cooperative
    31  Corporations,  Correction, County, Criminal Procedure, Debtor and Credi-
    32  tor, Domestic Relations, Economic  Development  Law,  Education,  Elder,
    33  Election  (Regional  and  Local),  Eminent  Domain Procedure, Employer's
    34  Liability,  Energy,  Environmental  Conservation,  Estates  Powers   and
    35  Trusts, Executive, Financial Services Law, General Associations, General
    36  Business, General City, General Construction, General Municipal, General
    37  Obligations,   Highway,   Insurance,   Judiciary  (Superior,  Appellate,
    38  Supreme, County and Local)  Labor,  Legislative  (Regional  and  Local),
    39  Lien,  Limited  Liability  Company  Law,  Local Finance, Mental Hygiene,
    40  Military, Multiple Dwelling, Multiple Residence,  Municipal  Home  Rule,
    41  Navigation, New York State Printing and Public Documents, Not-For-Profit
    42  Corporation,  Parks,  Recreation and Historic Preservation, Partnership,
    43  Penal, Personal Property, Private Housing Finance,  Public  Authorities,
    44  Public  Buildings,  Public  Health, Public Housing, Public Lands, Public
    45  Officers, Public Service, Racing, Pari-Mutuel Wagering and Breeding Law,
    46  Railroad, Rapid  Transit,  Real  Property,  Real  Property  Actions  and
    47  Proceedings,  Real  Property Tax, Religious Corporations, Rural Electric
    48  Cooperative, Second  Class  Cities,  Social  Services,  Soil  and  Water
    49  Conservation Districts, State, State Administrative Procedure Act, State
    50  Finance,  State Technology, Statute of Local Governments, Tax (except it
    51  may not enact or collect any Regional sales  taxes),  Town,  Transporta-
    52  tion,  Transportation Corporations, Uniform Commercial Code, Vehicle and
    53  Traffic, Village, Volunteer Ambulance Workers' Benefit, Volunteer  Fire-
    54  fighters'  Benefit,  Workers'  Compensation,  Family  Court, Surrogate's
    55  Court Procedure, Uniform City Court,  Uniform  District  Court,  Uniform
    56  Justice  Court, and any other types of laws not listed in State Legisla-

        A. 4446                             4
 
     1  ture's list in section 3 of this article. Regional laws for these  types
     2  of  laws  shall  be  supreme  over  state  and local laws. Any state law
     3  changed by this section to a Regional law shall have any mention of  the
     4  Court  of Appeals changed to that Region's Superior Court. No person can
     5  be imprisoned for any number of civil offenses for more than six  months
     6  in  any calendar year. New York City Civil Court, New York City Criminal
     7  Court law will become New York Regional law. Each  Regional  Legislature
     8  may  amend,  repeal, or create new laws, but any changes will only apply
     9  to that Region. No offense greater than a  misdemeanor  with  a  maximum
    10  penalty  less  than or equal to one year in jail may be enacted by local
    11  governments. Felonies with a maximum penalty greater than  one  year  in
    12  jail  can  only be enacted under Regional law.  Misdemeanors may also be
    13  enacted under Regional law. Asset forfeiture shall be  allowed  only  if
    14  the  person(s)  who own the asset is/are convicted of a felony and asset
    15  was used in the crime and/or was obtained as result of  the  crime.  The
    16  election law requirements for getting on the ballot, for Regional Assem-
    17  blyperson  shall  be  the same or less strict than they were for a state
    18  Assemblyman; for Regional Senator shall be the same or less strict  than
    19  they  were for state Senator. Any other laws that are not listed in this
    20  paragraph or in section 3 of this article shall expire on July 1st, five
    21  years after the regional governors take office for the first time unless
    22  reenacted as a Regional Law.   All local  laws,  rules,  ordinances  and
    23  regulations  must  be  filed  with the appropriate regional secretary of
    24  state before they can take effect or be enforced. In the  New  Amsterdam
    25  region;  except  for  local  land  use  zoning laws all such local laws,
    26  rules, ordinances and/or regulations shall expire ten years  after  they
    27  are  filed.  Those that were pre-existing to this article will expire on
    28  January 1, three years after the regional governors take office for  the
    29  first time, unless reenacted and refiled.
    30    (i)  All  Regional Senators and Regional Assemblypersons shall receive
    31  the same salary set by their Regional law. They shall  not  receive  any
    32  additional  compensation  from  the  Region other than reimbursement for
    33  traveling and lodging expenses if they live more than 20 miles from  the
    34  Regional capital. However, the Regional Speakers and the Regional senate
    35  temporary  senate  presidents  shall  receive  the  same salary as their
    36  Regional lieutenant governor. After the salary is set,  no  law  varying
    37  the  compensation of Regional Senators or Regional Assemblypersons shall
    38  take effect until an election of  Regional  Assemblypersons  shall  have
    39  intervened.  Each  Regional  Assemblyperson shall be provided a district
    40  office of approximately the same square footage in his or  her  district
    41  and an office at the Regional capital. The same amount shall be given to
    42  each  Assemblyperson  to  pay  for  staff.  Such  amount shall be set by
    43  Regional law. Each Regional  Senator  shall  be  provided  two  district
    44  offices  totaling  approximately  the same square footage, in his or her
    45  district and an office at the Regional capital. The same amount shall be
    46  given to each Regional Senator to pay for staff. Such  amount  shall  be
    47  set by Regional law.
    48    (j)  The  Regional  Legislature may impeach for crimes and remove from
    49  office a  Regional  governor,  Regional  lieutenant  governor,  Regional
    50  Secretary  of State, local elected officials or appointed Regional offi-
    51  cers in its Region by a two-thirds (2/3) vote of  each  Regional  house.
    52  The state or Regional governor or any other official may not remove from
    53  office  any  elective  sheriff, county clerk, district attorney or other
    54  elective local official; they may only be removed mid-term  by  impeach-
    55  ment  or  conviction  of  a  felony. A regional governor may supersede a
    56  district attorney in his/her region for specific case(s) by appointing a

        A. 4446                             5
 
     1  special prosecutor in a manner defined by regional law. The  region  may
     2  by  regional  law  reassign  types  of  cases  where there might exist a
     3  conflict of interest with their regional attorney general.
     4    (k)  A majority of each Regional house shall constitute a quorum to do
     5  business. Each Regional house shall  determine  the  rules  of  its  own
     6  proceedings  and  is  the judge of the elections, returns and qualifica-
     7  tions of its own members;  shall  choose  its  own  officers;  and  each
     8  Regional  senate  shall  choose  a temporary president and each Regional
     9  assembly shall choose a speaker. No person shall serve as both  a  State
    10  and  Regional  temporary  senate  president,  nor anyone serve as both a
    11  state and Regional speaker. Each Regional house of each Regional  legis-
    12  lature  shall keep a journal of its proceedings, and publish the same on
    13  the internet, except such parts as two-thirds (2/3) of its members agree
    14  require secrecy. At request of one fifth (1/5) of its members, the  ayes
    15  and  nays  shall  be  entered on the journal. The doors of each Regional
    16  house shall be kept open, except when the public welfare  shall  require
    17  secrecy.  Neither  house  in  a  Regional legislature shall, without the
    18  consent of the other, adjourn for more than two days. Any bill may orig-
    19  inate in either house of the Regional legislature, and all bills  passed
    20  by  one  house  may be amended by the other.  No bill shall be passed or
    21  become a law unless it shall have been printed and placed on the  inter-
    22  net,  in its final form, at least seven calendar days prior to its final
    23  passage, unless the appropriate regional governor,  or  the  appropriate
    24  acting  regional  governor,  shall have certified, under his or her hand
    25  and the seal of the state or Region, the facts which in his or her opin-
    26  ion necessitate an immediate vote thereon, in which case  the  law  must
    27  expire  ten calendar days after passage, unless it is re-passed a second
    28  time after it has been on the internet for seven  days;  nor  shall  any
    29  bill  be  passed  or become a law, except by the assent of a majority of
    30  the members elected to each branch of a Regional legislature;  and  upon
    31  the  last  reading of a bill, no amendment thereof shall be allowed, and
    32  the question upon its final passage shall be taken immediately thereaft-
    33  er, and the ayes and nays entered on the journal.  Pre-existing  tax  or
    34  revenue  laws  shall  expire  on  July 1st five years after this article
    35  takes effect.  Every law or bill which imposes, continues or  revives  a
    36  tax  or raises revenue shall require at least three fifths (3/5) vote of
    37  both Regional houses to pass, the ayes and nays entered on the journals,
    38  and must distinctly state the tax and the object to which it  is  to  be
    39  applied.  It  shall  not  be sufficient to refer to any other law to fix
    40  such tax or object; all such laws must expire on  July  1st  five  years
    41  after  being  passed. Any law or bill that will mandate that any county,
    42  district, or other municipality must spend its own funds to comply  with
    43  such law shall require at least three fifths (3/5) vote of both Regional
    44  houses to pass, the ayes and nays entered on the journals, all such laws
    45  must  expire  on July 1st ten years after being passed. Any policy, rule
    46  or regulation that will mandate that  any  county,  district,  or  other
    47  municipality must spend its own funds to comply with it must be ratified
    48  by  at  least  three fifths (3/5) vote of both Regional houses, the ayes
    49  and nays entered on the journal, before it takes effect and must  expire
    50  on  July 1st ten years after being ratified.  Pre-existing mandates that
    51  require a county or other municipality to spend its own funds to  comply
    52  with  shall  expire on July 1st one year and 7 months after the regional
    53  governors take office for the first time. Medical costs  for  the  needy
    54  shall  not be delegated by the State or by a Region to counties or other
    55  municipalities, and shall be paid by the Region  up  to  limits  set  by
    56  Regional  law.  A  Region  may  by Regional law contract debts in antic-

        A. 4446                             6
 
     1  ipation of the receipt of taxes and revenues, direct  or  indirect,  for
     2  the  purposes and within the amounts of appropriations theretofore made.
     3  Notes or other obligations for the moneys so borrowed shall be issued as
     4  may be provided by law, and shall with the interest thereon be paid from
     5  such  taxes and revenues within one year from the date of issue.  Except
     6  for anticipation debt listed above no Regional debt shall  be  hereafter
     7  contracted  by  or  on  behalf  of the Region, unless such debt shall be
     8  authorized by law, for some single work or  purpose,  to  be  distinctly
     9  specified therein. No such debt law shall take effect until it shall, at
    10  a  November  general election, have been submitted to the people of that
    11  Region, and have received a majority of  all  the  votes  cast  for  and
    12  against  it  at  such  election. Any such Regional debt voted on must be
    13  paid off within twenty years.   The Regional legislature  shall  provide
    14  for  the  maintenance  and  support  of a system of free common schools,
    15  wherein all the children of its Region may be educated.
    16    § 3. (a) The office of State Senator is abolished;  Regional  Senators
    17  shall  replace  state  senators.  When  meeting as the State Senate each
    18  Regional Senator's vote shall be weighed by the  population  of  his/her
    19  Regional Senate District.
    20    (b)  The  office of State Assemblyman is abolished; Regional Assembly-
    21  persons shall replace state  Assemblymen.  When  meeting  as  the  State
    22  Assembly  each  Regional  Assemblyperson's  vote shall be weighed by the
    23  population of his/her Regional Assembly District.
    24    (c) The State Legislature shall hold its regular session in the months
    25  of April and May of each year and adjourn its regular session  no  later
    26  than  May  31st. Members of the State Legislature shall not receive more
    27  than fifty dollars a day in compensation from the  state  for  each  day
    28  they  attend  during  the  regular  session and no compensation from the
    29  state during Extraordinary sessions. The State  Legislative  member  may
    30  receive reimbursement when receipts are provided for traveling and lodg-
    31  ing  expenses  if  they  live  more than 30 miles from a state meeting's
    32  location. No additional compensation shall be provided by the state  for
    33  service in the State Legislature.
    34    (d)  The  fiscal  year  of state will be from May 1 to April 30 of the
    35  following year.
    36    (e) State Legislature's power to enact laws shall be limited  only  to
    37  the following types of laws: Election (for state wide offices/issues and
    38  United  States  offices  only),  Executive (for the state only), Indian,
    39  Judiciary (Court of Appeals, Court of Claims,  Judicial  Conduct  only),
    40  Legislative  (for  the  state  only), Military (National Guard and Naval
    41  only), Retirement and Social Security,  State  Administrative  Procedure
    42  Act  (for  the state only), State Finance (for the state only), Tax, but
    43  limited to sales taxes only,  Court  of  Claims,  Civil  Service  (state
    44  employees  only),  relations with the federal government, relations with
    45  other states or Canada for connecting roads, bridges and other  reasons,
    46  and  connecting roads and bridges between Regions. No criminal penalties
    47  greater than a misdemeanor with a  maximum  one  year  in  jail  may  be
    48  enacted by the state or local governments.  Felonies can only be enacted
    49  under  Regional  law;  National  Guard felonies will be prosecuted under
    50  Regional military law. Any other  types  of  laws  not  listed  in  this
    51  section  shall  become Regional laws for each Region and be deleted from
    52  State code on July 1st following the date the  Regional  governors  take
    53  office for the first time.
    54    (f)  Taxes  and revenue for the state shall be limited only to a sales
    55  tax which may not exceed a maximum of four (4) percent. After January 1,
    56  ten years after the regional governors take office for the first time it

        A. 4446                             7
 
     1  may not exceed a maximum of three (3) percent.   The sales tax  for  the
     2  state  and  local governments shall be defined as a tax on sales, on the
     3  receipts from sales and/or receipts from hotel/motel room rentals, leas-
     4  es  or rentals of moveable goods, and/or any taxable services; including
     5  a use tax on items over one thousand dollars  in  value  that  are  used
     6  within  the  state  by  a permanent resident but which were bought else-
     7  where, and which are thus not originally subject to the sales  tax.  The
     8  sales taxes shall never be applied to medicines, food unless served in a
     9  restaurant,  fuel, real property, sale of buildings, and/or nonalcoholic
    10  beverages.  The state shall give 25 percent of its sales tax revenue  to
    11  the  regions  divided  in  proportion to each region's population, until
    12  January 1, ten years after the regional governors take  office  for  the
    13  first  time, which shall be paid on the 15th of every month for previous
    14  month's revenue. The maximum combined state and local  sales  taxes  may
    15  not  exceed  8  percent.  After  January 1, ten years after the regional
    16  governors take office for the first time, the maximum combined sales tax
    17  may not exceed 7 percent.
    18    (g) The state may no longer contract any debt  other  than  in  antic-
    19  ipation  of  the  receipt  of taxes and revenues which must be paid back
    20  within one year.
    21    § 4. Regional Executive. (a) The executive power in each Region  shall
    22  be vested in the Regional governor, who shall hold office for four years
    23  starting  at  noon  on December 1st after his/her election. The Regional
    24  lieutenant governor shall be chosen at the same time, and for  the  same
    25  term.   The  Regional  governors,  Regional  lieutenant  governors,  and
    26  Regional secretary of states shall be elected by  the  people  of  their
    27  respective Regions. They must be a United States citizen and have been a
    28  resident  of  their respective Region for at least five years or a resi-
    29  dent of their respective Region at time of its creation.  Each  Regional
    30  governor  shall  have  power to convene his/her Region's legislature, or
    31  his/her Region's senate only, on extraordinary occasions; for a  special
    32  session which may last no longer than two weeks. No such special session
    33  may be called within six weeks of the end of another special session. In
    34  case  of  the  removal of the Regional governor from office or of his or
    35  her death or resignation,  the  Regional  lieutenant-governor  for  that
    36  Region shall become Regional governor for the remainder of the term.  In
    37  case  the  Regional governor is otherwise unable to discharge the powers
    38  and duties of his/her office the Regional lieutenant-governor  for  that
    39  Region shall act as Regional governor until the inability shall cease or
    40  until  the  term  of  the  Regional  governor  shall expire. If both the
    41  Regional governor and Regional lieutenant governor offices for a  Region
    42  are  vacant  or  otherwise  unable to discharge the powers and duties of
    43  their offices, that Region's Regional Secretary of  State  shall  become
    44  governor,  automatically resigning as a Regional Secretary of State upon
    45  taking the oath as Regional governor.  If all three offices  are  vacant
    46  that  Region's  temporary senate president will become governor automat-
    47  ically resigning as a senator and temporary senate president upon taking
    48  the oath as Regional governor. Each Region shall by Regional law  deter-
    49  mine  how  and who shall become acting Regional governor if the Regional
    50  governor, Regional lieutenant governor, Regional Secretary of State  and
    51  temporary  senate  president offices all are vacant or all are otherwise
    52  unable to discharge the powers and duties of their offices. The Regional
    53  lieutenant-governor shall be the president of the  Regional  senate  for
    54  his/her  Region  but  shall have only a vote if they be equally divided.
    55  The election law petition requirements for getting  on  the  ballot  for
    56  Regional governor, Regional lieutenant governor or Regional Secretary of

        A. 4446                             8
 
     1  State  shall  be the same or less strict than are for State Comptroller.
     2  Any party conventions  shall  be  held  by  Region  for  these  Regional
     3  offices. The salaries of Regional governor, Regional lieutenant governor
     4  and  Regional  Secretary  of  State  shall be by Regional law. After the
     5  salary is set no law varying their compensation shall take effect  until
     6  an election of Regional governor shall have intervened.
     7    (b)  Every bill which shall have passed the Regional senate and assem-
     8  bly shall, before it becomes a law, be presented to the Regional  gover-
     9  nor  for  that Region.  If the appropriate regional governor approve, he
    10  or she shall sign it; but if not, he or she shall return it with his  or
    11  her  objections to the Regional house in which it shall have originated,
    12  which shall enter the objections at large on the journal, and proceed to
    13  reconsider it. In either case he/she  shall  place  a  copy  of  his/her
    14  actions  on  the  internet. If after such reconsideration, two-thirds of
    15  the members voting in that Regional house shall agree to pass the  bill,
    16  it  shall  be  sent  together with the objections, to the other Regional
    17  house, by which it shall likewise be reconsidered; and  if  approved  by
    18  two-thirds  of  the  members  voting  in  that  house, it shall become a
    19  regional law notwithstanding the objections of the appropriate  regional
    20  governor.  In  all such cases the votes in both Regional houses shall be
    21  determined by yeas and nays, and the names of the members  voting  shall
    22  be  entered  on  the journal of each Regional house respectively. If any
    23  bill shall not be returned by the appropriate regional  governor  within
    24  ten days (Sundays excepted) after it shall have been presented to him or
    25  her,  the  same shall be a law in like manner as if he or she had signed
    26  it, unless the legislature shall,  by  their  adjournment,  prevent  its
    27  return,  in which case it shall not become a law without the approval of
    28  the appropriate regional governor. No bill shall become a law after  the
    29  final  adjournment  of  the Regional legislature, unless approved by the
    30  governor  within  thirty  days  after  such  adjournment.  If  any  bill
    31  presented to the appropriate regional governor contains several items of
    32  appropriation  of money, the appropriate regional governor may object to
    33  one or more of such items while approving of the other  portion  of  the
    34  bill. If a single item of appropriation shall exceed $250,000 the appro-
    35  priate regional governor may reduce the amount appropriated with his/her
    36  objections. In such cases the appropriate regional governor shall append
    37  to  the  bill,  at  the  time of signing it, a statement of the items to
    38  which he or she objects; and the appropriation so objected to shall  not
    39  take  effect. If the Regional legislature be in session, he or she shall
    40  transmit to the Regional house in which the bill originated  a  copy  of
    41  such  statement, and the items objected to shall be separately reconsid-
    42  ered. If on reconsideration one or more of such  items  be  approved  by
    43  two-thirds of the members voting in each appropriate Regional house, the
    44  same  shall  be  part  of the law, notwithstanding the objections of the
    45  appropriate Regional governor.  All the provisions of this paragraph, in
    46  relation to bills not approved by  the  appropriate  Regional  governor,
    47  shall apply in cases in which he or she shall withhold approval from any
    48  item or items contained in a bill appropriating money.
    49    (c)  Each Regional governor shall nominate, and by and with the Advice
    50  and Consent of the Regional Senate for  his/her  Region,  shall  appoint
    51  Regional Commissioners, other public Ministers and Consuls, Authorities,
    52  and  other  government  controlled  Public  Corporations  board members,
    53  Regional Education Commissioner, Justices of the Appellate divisions  in
    54  his  or  her  Region from elected Supreme Court Justices in their Region
    55  for the remainder of their elected term, and all  other  Regional  Offi-
    56  cers,  whose  Appointments  are  not  herein otherwise provided for, and

        A. 4446                             9
 
     1  which shall be established by law. Those appointed by Regional  governor
     2  without  a  fixed term may be removed by the appropriate regional gover-
     3  nor; but the Regional legislature may by Regional law vest the  Appoint-
     4  ment  of such inferior Officers, as they think proper, in their Regional
     5  governor alone, in the Courts of Law, or in the  Heads  of  Departments.
     6  The  appropriate  regional governor shall be empowered to seek a warrant
     7  in a Regional supreme court to hand over a criminal fugitive from anoth-
     8  er state or Region to the agents of the Governor of  the  State  of  New
     9  York  to  allow  for  the fugitive's return to the location the fugitive
    10  committed the alleged crime. This power can  be  regulated  by  Regional
    11  law.  Each  regional governor shall be empowered to pardon for civil and
    12  criminal offenses of state, regional law  or  local  law  that  occurred
    13  within his/her region.
    14    (d)  Annually,  on or before the first Monday of January each Regional
    15  governor shall place on the internet  and  submit  to  his/her  Regional
    16  legislature a budget containing a complete plan of expenditures proposed
    17  to  be  made  before the close of the ensuing fiscal year and all moneys
    18  and revenues estimated to be available therefor, together with an expla-
    19  nation of the basis of such estimates and recommendations as to proposed
    20  Regional legislation, if any, which the  appropriate  regional  governor
    21  may  deem  necessary  to  provide moneys and revenues sufficient to meet
    22  such proposed expenditures. It shall also contain such other recommenda-
    23  tions and information as the  appropriate  regional  governor  may  deem
    24  proper and such additional information as may be required by law. At the
    25  time of submitting the budget to his/her Regional legislature the appro-
    26  priate regional governor shall submit a bill or bills containing all the
    27  proposed appropriations and re-appropriations included in the budget and
    28  the proposed Regional legislation, if any, recommended therein. No money
    29  shall  ever  be  paid out of a Regional treasury or any of its funds, or
    30  any of the funds under its management, except in pursuance of an  appro-
    31  priation  by  law; nor unless such payment be made within two years next
    32  after the passage of such appropriation act; and every such law making a
    33  new appropriation or continuing  or  reviving  an  appropriation,  shall
    34  distinctly  specify  the  sum appropriated, and the object or purpose to
    35  which it is to be applied; and it shall not be sufficient for  such  law
    36  to refer to any other law to fix such sum.
    37    (e)  The  Regional Secretary of State for each region shall be elected
    38  at the same general election as the regional governor  and  hold  office
    39  for  the  same term.   The Regional Secretary of State shall run his/her
    40  region's Department of State and  shall  appoint  with  the  Advice  and
    41  Consent  of  appropriate regional Senate for his/her region the regional
    42  Commissioner of Motor Vehicles and the  regional  Attorney-General,  and
    43  may  remove  them.  Should  the office of Regional Secretary of State be
    44  vacant or he/she become regional governor or acting  regional  governor,
    45  the appropriate regional Senate will elect a Regional Secretary of State
    46  to serve the remainder of the term.
    47    (f) The Regional Board of Elections for each region shall regulate all
    48  elections  with  the  local boards of elections in its region. The State
    49  Board of Elections shall coordinate and fund elections  for  state  wide
    50  offices/issues  and  United  States  offices  with  regional  Boards  of
    51  Elections. Ballots for  state  wide  offices/issues  and  United  States
    52  offices  shall  be  a separate ballot sheet from regional offices/issues
    53  and Local Offices/issues. In the New Amsterdam and Montauk regions  each
    54  County  shall  continue to fund a county Board of Elections. Starting on
    55  July 1st, after the regional governors take office for the  first  time,
    56  the New Amsterdam and Montauk Regional Board of Elections and the County

        A. 4446                            10

     1  Boards  of Elections shall conduct all regional, local, school district,
     2  village, fire district and other local district elections  in  a  manner
     3  set by New Amsterdam or Montauk regional law.
     4    §  5. After the regional governors take office for the first time, the
     5  governors' panel shall consist of the State Governor  and  the  Regional
     6  Governors. The governors' panel shall meet weekly to divide departments,
     7  transfer  employees,  property,  assets  as  defined  in this article by
     8  majority vote, and debts as defined in this article. After August 1st of
     9  the year the regional governors take office  for  the  first  time,  the
    10  governors'  panel  shall continue to meet at least once a calendar year.
    11  The Court of Appeals shall have  original  jurisdiction  if  a  Regional
    12  governor  appeals  a decision of this governors' panel or to break a tie
    13  vote of this governors' panel. When a department, office  or  agency  is
    14  divided, its employees will become employees of the Region they primari-
    15  ly  work  in,  or  whose issues they primarily work on. If a department,
    16  office or agency only works on the issues of a single Region its employ-
    17  ees shall all become employees of that Region.    Equipment,  media  and
    18  vehicles  shall  be  divided equitably. Each member of a state board, or
    19  Commission which is divided shall remain on the boards, Regional author-
    20  ity boards, or Regional Commissions for the remainder  of  his/her  term
    21  only  for the Region where he/she is registered to vote (if they are not
    22  registered to vote in New York State their seat shall be vacant  in  all
    23  Regions). Any vacant seats will be filled according to Regional law. Any
    24  Department/  operations and agency/office whose employees' pay and bene-
    25  fits are fully funded by the federal government may be left under  state
    26  by  this  governors'  panel  and  continue to perform their duties while
    27  under the state governor's chain of command. The governors' panel  shall
    28  continue  to review whether any changes in federal funding have occurred
    29  that would require it to be divided at a later  date.  Unless  otherwise
    30  stated  in  this  article such divisions shall be completed by April 1st
    31  after the Regional governors take office for the first time.
    32    (a) The Office of State Attorney-General  is  abolished  and  all  its
    33  powers and duties given to the Regional Attorney-Generals. Department of
    34  Law  and  Office of State Attorney-General employees and duties shall be
    35  divided between the Regional Attorney-Generals' Departments of Law.  For
    36  the  purposes  of  this  constitution, the term "attorney-general" shall
    37  mean "appropriate regional attorney-general" wherever it appears.
    38    (b) The State Comptroller shall have the power to  audit  each  Region
    39  and  charge  the  Regions the reasonable costs related to performing the
    40  audits. The State Comptroller's other powers and duties of  his  or  her
    41  office shall not be affected by the provisions of this article.
    42    (c)  The  Board  of Regents is abolished and all its powers and duties
    43  transferred to the Regional Education Departments. Department of  educa-
    44  tion  employees  shall be divided between the Regional Education Depart-
    45  ments.
    46    (d) The Office of General Services, Department of Civil  Service,  and
    47  State  Board of Elections employees shall be divided into four sections,
    48  some remaining under the state and the rest being  transferred  to  each
    49  Region.  Department  of  Tax and Finance employees shall also be divided
    50  into four sections; provided that those employees whose  duties  involve
    51  sales  taxes  shall  remain  under  the  Governor  and the rest shall be
    52  divided between the Regional Departments of Tax and Finance.
    53    (e) The Division of State Police is abolished and its employees  shall
    54  be  divided  between the Capital Police under the State (which shall not
    55  have more 50 officers), the  New  Amsterdam  Regional  Police  Division,
    56  Montauk Regional Police Division, and New York Regional Police Division.

        A. 4446                            11
 
     1    (f)  The  following  departments,  corporations  or  authorities shall
     2  remain part of New York State government: Court  of  Appeals,  Court  of
     3  Claims,  Office  of  State Comptroller (Department of Audit and Control,
     4  NYS and Local Retirement System), Governor's Office, Metro-North  Commu-
     5  ter Railroad Company and Long Island Rail Road Company whose boards will
     6  be  nominated  by  State  Governor  and confirmed by State Senate, State
     7  Commission on Judicial Conduct, and  Teachers'  Retirement  System.  All
     8  other  Executive  Departments,  offices,  or  agencies not otherwise set
     9  forth in this article shall be abolished and their duties and  employees
    10  shall  be divided between the new Regional Departments or offices of the
    11  same name.
    12    (g) Unless otherwise stated in this article, appointments for  depart-
    13  ments,  offices  and  agencies shall be made by the appropriate regional
    14  governors.  Appointments for vacant local offices shall be made  by  the
    15  appropriate Regional governor.
    16    (h)  (i)  Authorities, and other Public Corporations, who have some of
    17  their board members appointed by the Governor or other  New  York  State
    18  officials,  and  exist in only one region shall have their board members
    19  appointed by that Region's Regional Governor.    Authorities  and  other
    20  government  controlled  Public Corporations who have some of their board
    21  members appointed by Governor or other  New  York  State  officials  and
    22  exist  in  more  than one region shall be divided into regional Authori-
    23  ties, or regional government controlled Public Corporations, by July 1st
    24  after first time  the  regional  governors  take  office.  Each  of  new
    25  regional  Authorities  or  regional  government controlled Public Corpo-
    26  rations shall take over the ownership of the assets, property, and leas-
    27  es in their region. Equipment, media,  and  vehicles  shall  be  divided
    28  equitably,  while debts are divided in proportion to each region's popu-
    29  lation. They shall have their board members appointed by  that  Region's
    30  Regional  Governor. If some or all of the board members of these divided
    31  Authorities and other  government  controlled  Public  Corporations  are
    32  appointed by local officials, each local official may only appoint board
    33  members  of  new  regional Authorities or regional government controlled
    34  Public Corporations in the region that official serves.
    35    (ii) Schools, Libraries, Fire districts or villages that exist in more
    36  than one region shall be divided  along  the  regional  boundary  within
    37  three years after the first time the regional governors take office. The
    38  divided  districts shall take over the ownership of the assets, property
    39  and leases in their region.  Equipment,  media  and  vehicles  shall  be
    40  divided  equitably,  while  debts shall be divided in proportion to each
    41  new district's/village's assessed value.  The  State  Comptroller  shall
    42  assign  employee(s)  to  help  the  districts/villages divide assets and
    43  debts.
    44    (i) The State University of New York shall  be  divided  by  July  1st
    45  after  first  election of Regional governors. All campus, locations, and
    46  employees in the New Amsterdam Region shall be part of the University of
    47  New Amsterdam and its  board(s)  appointed  by  New  Amsterdam  Regional
    48  Governor  with  advice and consent of the New Amsterdam Regional Senate.
    49  The New York and Montauk Regions shall pay at  least  $8,000  every  six
    50  months  for  each  Regional  resident enrolled full time in a Bachelor's
    51  degree program at the University of New  Amsterdam,  for  a  maximum  of
    52  eight  payments,  unless  they shall by New York or Montauk Regional law
    53  set a higher amount. All campus, locations, and employees in the Montauk
    54  Region shall be part of the  University  of  Montauk  and  its  board(s)
    55  appointed  by  the  Montauk Regional Governor with advice and consent of
    56  the Montauk Regional Senate. The New  York  and  New  Amsterdam  Regions

        A. 4446                            12
 
     1  shall  pay  at  least $8,000 every six months for each Regional resident
     2  enrolled full time in a Bachelor's degree program at the  University  of
     3  Montauk,  for a maximum of eight payments, unless they shall by New York
     4  or  New  Amsterdam  Regional  law  set  a  higher  amount.  All  campus,
     5  locations, and employees in the  New  York  Region  including  the  City
     6  University  of  New York shall be part of the University of New York and
     7  its board(s) appointed by the New York Regional Governor with advice and
     8  consent of the New York Regional Senate. The New Amsterdam  and  Montauk
     9  Regions  shall  pay  at  least $8,000 every six months for each Regional
    10  resident enrolled full time  in  a  Bachelor's  degree  program  at  the
    11  University  of  New  York,  for a maximum of eight payments, unless they
    12  shall by New Amsterdam Regional law set a higher amount.
    13    (j) (i) New York State owned  assets,  roads  and  bridges,  property,
    14  revenue,  taxes  (other  than  state  sales taxes), and leases shall, by
    15  April 1 after the first  election  of  Regional  governors,  become  the
    16  assets,  roads  and bridges, property, revenue, taxes, and leases of the
    17  Region of which they are located, earned, or of persons from which  they
    18  are  collected  reside;  except  that  in the case of income taxes, if a
    19  person earns income in one Region and resides  in  another  Region,  the
    20  Region he or she earns the income in shall give him a tax credit for the
    21  amount  of  income  taxes  paid in their home Region on that income. The
    22  following buildings and associated land will  remain  state  owned:  The
    23  State  Capitol  building,  the Legislative Office building, the Governor
    24  Alfred E Smith building, State Comptroller's building at 110  State  St,
    25  State  Comptroller's  building  Parking  Garage, Sheridan Hollow Parking
    26  Garage, and The Governor's Executive Mansion, all located in Albany, and
    27  the Adam Clayton Powell Jr. State Office Building in Harlem.
    28    (ii) One half of state debt, incurred prior to the effective  date  of
    29  this  article  shall  remain  a  state  obligation; the rest will become
    30  regional debt and shall be divided in  proportion  each  region's  popu-
    31  lation.  Any  payments  for  retirees  of  the  New York State and Local
    32  Retirement System and Teachers' Retirement System shall remain  a  state
    33  obligation. The governors' panel shall designate two correctional facil-
    34  ities for males and one correctional facility for females located in the
    35  New  Amsterdam  Region  to  be owned, rented, or leased by New Amsterdam
    36  Region. The remaining correctional facilities located in the New Amster-
    37  dam Region shall be designated to be owned, rented, or leased by the New
    38  York Region or the Montauk Region. The employees in  these  correctional
    39  facilities  shall  become  New  York  Region employees or Montauk Region
    40  employees.  Inmates in correctional facilities shall be divided so  that
    41  those  who  committed  their  crimes  in the New York Region shall serve
    42  their time in correctional facilities owned, rented, or  leased  by  the
    43  New York Region; while those who committed their crimes in the New Amst-
    44  erdam  Region  shall  serve their time in correctional facilities owned,
    45  rented, or leased by the  New  Amsterdam  Region  and  while  those  who
    46  committed  their  crimes in the Montauk Region shall serve their time in
    47  correctional facilities owned, rented, or leased by the Montauk  Region.
    48  Inmates  shall  be transferred to appropriate correctional facilities by
    49  February 1, two years after the regional governors take office  for  the
    50  first  time.  After  that date a region holding inmate(s) that should be
    51  transferred may charge the appropriate region for costs of  holding  the
    52  inmate(s)  in  their  correctional  facility.  Patients  or residents in
    53  Mental Hospitals, Developmental Centers or Group Homes who are currently
    54  paid for by the state and whose original home address is in a  different
    55  region  than such Mental Hospital, Developmental Center or Group Home is
    56  located shall have their costs paid by their original home region.

        A. 4446                            13
 
     1    (k) The Office of Court Administration  shall  be  divided  into  four
     2  sections; some employees remaining under the chief judge of the Court of
     3  Appeals  and the rest being transferred to each Region.  The division of
     4  Military and Naval Affairs' New York National guard and  employees  will
     5  remain  under  the  New  York  State governor as commander in chief; the
     6  division of Military and Naval Affairs' New  York  Guard  and  employees
     7  shall  be  divided  into  Regional guards with each Regional governor as
     8  commander in chief. Employees and property owned or leased  for  use  of
     9  the  Division of Military and Naval Affairs will be divided appropriate-
    10  ly.
    11    § 6. Regional Judiciary. (a) The  New  York  Regional  Governor  shall
    12  appoint,  with  the  advice and consent of the New York Regional Senate,
    13  county judges and/or Supreme Court Justices in the New  York  Region  to
    14  serve  the remainder of their term of office as Chief Justice or associ-
    15  ate justice on New York Regional Superior Court. There shall be a  Chief
    16  Justice  and  four  associate justices on the New York Regional Superior
    17  Court. The New York Regional Superior Court shall  hear  appeals,  in  a
    18  manner defined by New York Regional law, from the First and Second judi-
    19  cial  departments,  on Regional laws or local laws within the Region and
    20  shall have the final determination in  interpreting  New  York  Regional
    21  laws  or  local  laws and whether such laws are constitutional. Salaries
    22  and expenses of all courts in the First and Second judicial  departments
    23  shall be set and paid in a manner defined by New York Region law. When a
    24  vacancy  occurs  in  the  New York Regional Superior Court or a New York
    25  Regional supreme court and the Regional senate is not  in  session,  the
    26  New  York  regional  governor shall call it back in a special session to
    27  fill the vacancy.
    28    (b) The New Amsterdam Regional Governor shall appoint, with the advice
    29  and consent of the New Amsterdam Regional Senate, county  judges  and/or
    30  Supreme Court Justices in the New Amsterdam Region, to serve the remain-
    31  der of their term of office as Chief Justice or associate justice on the
    32  New  Amsterdam  Regional  Superior Court. There shall be a Chief Justice
    33  and four associate justices  on  the  New  Amsterdam  Regional  Superior
    34  Court.  The New Amsterdam Regional Superior Court shall hear appeals, in
    35  a manner defined by New Amsterdam  Regional  law,  from  the  Third  and
    36  Fourth  judicial  departments  on Regional laws and shall have the final
    37  determination in interpreting New Amsterdam Regional laws or local  laws
    38  and  whether such laws are constitutional.  Salaries and expenses of all
    39  courts in the Third and Fourth judicial departments  shall  be  set  and
    40  paid  in  a  manner  defined by New Amsterdam Region law. When a vacancy
    41  occurs in the New Amsterdam Regional Superior Court or a  New  Amsterdam
    42  Regional supreme court and the Regional senate is not in session the New
    43  Amsterdam  regional  governor shall call it back in a special session to
    44  fill the vacancy.
    45    (c) The Montauk Regional Governor shall appoint, with the  advice  and
    46  consent  of  the  Montauk  Regional Senate, county judges and/or Supreme
    47  Court Justices in Montauk Region; to serve the remainder of  their  term
    48  of  office as Chief Justice or associate justice on the Montauk Regional
    49  Superior Court. There shall  be  a  Chief  Justice  and  four  associate
    50  justices  on  the  Montauk Regional Superior Court. The Montauk Regional
    51  Superior Court shall hear  appeals,  in  a  manner  defined  by  Montauk
    52  Regional  law, from Fifth and Sixth judicial department on Regional laws
    53  and shall have the final determination in interpreting Montauk  Regional
    54  laws  or  local  laws and whether such laws are constitutional. Salaries
    55  and expenses of all courts in the Fifth judicial  departments  shall  be
    56  set and paid in a manner defined by Montauk Regional law. When a vacancy

        A. 4446                            14
 
     1  occurs  in  the  Montauk  Regional  Superior Court or a Montauk Regional
     2  supreme court and the Regional senate is  not  in  session  the  Montauk
     3  Regional  governor  shall  call it back in a special session to fill the
     4  vacancy.
     5    (d)  Justices  of  the  Appellate  Division  First and Second judicial
     6  departments shall be appointed by the New York Regional Governor.
     7    (e) Justices of the  Appellate  Division  Third  and  Fourth  judicial
     8  departments shall be appointed by the New Amsterdam Regional Governor.
     9    (f)  Justices  of  the  Appellate  Division  Fifth  and Sixth judicial
    10  departments shall be appointed by the Montauk Regional Governor.
    11    (g) The jurisdiction of each Regional Superior Court shall be  limited
    12  to  the  review of questions of applicable United States law, state law,
    13  regional law, local laws, rules, charters,  ordinances  or  regulations,
    14  when hearing appeals from appellate divisions; except where the judgment
    15  is  of  death where appeal will be to the Court of Appeals, or where the
    16  appellate division within its Region, on reversing or modifying a  final
    17  or interlocutory judgment in an action or a final or interlocutory order
    18  in a special proceeding, finds new facts and a final judgment or a final
    19  order  pursuant thereto is entered. The right to appeal shall not depend
    20  upon the amount involved. The applicable Regional Superior  Court  shall
    21  adopt  and  from  time  to  time may amend a rule to permit the court to
    22  answer questions of Regional law certified to it by the Supreme Court of
    23  the United States, a Court of Appeals of the United States or an  appel-
    24  late  court  of last resort of another state, which may be determinative
    25  of the cause then pending in the certifying court and which in the opin-
    26  ion of the certifying court are not controlled by precedent in the deci-
    27  sions of the courts of that Region. Each region may by regional law  set
    28  up a regional court of claims, which shall have at least five judges the
    29  actual  number  of  judges  shall  be set by regional law.   The term of
    30  office shall be ten years. The terms shall  be  staggered  so  an  equal
    31  number  of  judges  terms expire on every December 31st of even numbered
    32  years. At least three judges must hear each case. The  judges  shall  be
    33  appointed  by the appropriate regional governor but must be confirmed by
    34  the appropriate regional Senate. The court shall  have  jurisdiction  to
    35  hear  and determine claims against that region or by that region against
    36  the claimant or between conflicting claimants as the  regional  legisla-
    37  ture  may  by  regional  law  provide.  Regional  law  may also give its
    38  regional court of claims the power to hear claims  against  any  county,
    39  district,  or  other  municipality  over a dollar amount set by regional
    40  law.  Jury trials shall not be allowed at a regional  court  of  claims.
    41  Any  appeals may be heard by the applicable Regional Superior Court. The
    42  Chief Justice of the applicable Regional Superior  Court  shall  be  the
    43  Chief  Justice  of  that Region's courts and shall be the chief judicial
    44  officer of that region's unified court. In each Region there shall be an
    45  administrative board of the courts which  shall  consist  of  the  Chief
    46  Justice of the applicable Regional Superior Court as chairperson and the
    47  presiding justice of the appellate division of the supreme court of each
    48  judicial  department  within  that Region. The Chief Justice shall, with
    49  the advice and consent  of  the  administrative  board  of  the  courts,
    50  appoint  a  chief  administrator  of the courts in that Region who shall
    51  serve at the pleasure of that Regional Chief Justice. The Regional chief
    52  administrator, on behalf of  the  Chief  Justice,  shall  supervise  the
    53  administration  and  operation  of the unified Regional court system. In
    54  the exercise of such responsibility, the Regional chief administrator of
    55  the courts shall have such powers and duties as may be delegated to  him
    56  or  her  by  that  Region's Chief Justice and such additional powers and

        A. 4446                            15
 
     1  duties as may be provided by Regional  law.  The  Chief  Justice,  after
     2  consultation  with  that  Region's administrative board, shall establish
     3  standards and administrative policies for general application throughout
     4  that  Region,  which  shall  be  submitted  by the Chief Justice of that
     5  Region's superior court, together with the recommendations, if  any,  of
     6  that  Region's  administrative  board. Such standards and administrative
     7  policies shall be promulgated after approval by that  Region's  superior
     8  court.  When  a judge is appointed to a Regional Superior Court an addi-
     9  tional new judge position shall be  temporarily  created  in  the  trial
    10  court  for  the length of the appointment and filled by election to take
    11  over the vacancy produced by the appointment to  the  Regional  Superior
    12  Court. Each region shall fund its own courts. After January 1, two years
    13  after  the  regional governors take office for the first time the number
    14  of judges on each Appellate Division shall  be  set  by  the  applicable
    15  region's law.
    16    (h)  A  Fourteenth  Judicial  District  shall be created consisting of
    17  Dutchess, Orange, and Putnam counties. This 14th Judicial District shall
    18  be part of the Third Judicial Department. A fifteenth Judicial  District
    19  shall  be  created consisting of Nassau County. A fifth Judicial Depart-
    20  ment shall be created consisting of the remaining  parts  of  the  tenth
    21  Judicial  District and the fifteenth Judicial District. A Sixth Judicial
    22  Department shall be created consisting of the  remaining  parts  of  the
    23  ninth Judicial District.
    24    (i)  The  Court  of  Appeals shall, after each federal census is taken
    25  decennially, also draw  U.S.    Congressional  districts  for  the  next
    26  election, but limit the number of districts crossing regional boundaries
    27  to maximum of three.
    28    (j)  (i)  There shall be a unified court system for each Region of the
    29  state. The state-wide courts shall consist of the Court of Appeals,  and
    30  the  court  of  claims.    The  Region-wide  courts of each Region shall
    31  consist of each Region's Regional superior court, supreme courts includ-
    32  ing the appellate divisions thereof, the county court,  the  surrogate's
    33  court  and  the family court, as hereinafter provided. The unified court
    34  system for each Region shall also include the district, town,  city  and
    35  village  courts,  within  each  Region as hereinafter provided.  The New
    36  York Regional legislature shall establish in and for  the  city  of  New
    37  York,  as  part  of  the  unified court system for its region, a single,
    38  city-wide court of civil jurisdiction and a single, city-wide  court  of
    39  criminal jurisdiction, as hereinafter provided, and may upon the request
    40  of  the  mayor  and  the local legislative body of the city of New York,
    41  merge the two courts into one city-wide court of both civil and criminal
    42  jurisdiction.
    43    (ii) The Court of  Appeals,  the  Regional  superior  courts,  supreme
    44  courts  including  the  appellate  divisions  thereof,  the  court(s) of
    45  claims, the county court, the surrogate's court, the family  court,  the
    46  courts  or  court  of civil and criminal jurisdiction of the city of New
    47  York, and such other courts as the applicable Regional  legislature  may
    48  determine shall be courts of record.
    49    (iii)  All  processes,  warrants  and  other  mandates of the Court of
    50  Appeals, and the court of claims may be served and executed in any  part
    51  of the state. All processes, warrants and other mandates of the Regional
    52  superior  court, supreme courts including the appellate divisions there-
    53  of, the county court, the surrogate's court, the family court and  other
    54  Regional  courts  may  be  served  and  executed  only in the applicable
    55  Region. All processes, warrants and other  mandates  of  the  courts  or
    56  court  of  civil  and criminal jurisdiction of the city of New York may,

        A. 4446                            16

     1  subject to such limitation as may be prescribed by the New York Regional
     2  legislature, be served and executed in any part of the New York  Region.
     3  The applicable Regional legislature may provide that processes, warrants
     4  and  other  mandates of the district court may be served and executed in
     5  any part of the Region and that processes, warrants and  other  mandates
     6  of  town,  village  and  city courts outside the city of New York may be
     7  served and executed in any part of the county in which such  courts  are
     8  located or in any part of any adjoining county within that Region.
     9    (iv)  The  court  of  appeals  is continued. Effective on December 1st
    10  after the regional governors are elected for the first  time,  it  shall
    11  consist  of the eleven judges.  Those in office on the effective date of
    12  this article shall continue to hold their offices until  the  expiration
    13  of  their  respective  terms. The official terms of the court of appeals
    14  chief judge and the associate judges shall be fourteen years.  After the
    15  regional governors are elected for the first time, the chief judge shall
    16  assign each associate judge into Classes; the first Class shall  be  the
    17  current  chief  judge  and  one  associate  judge  whose successors will
    18  continue to be nominated by the state governor. The  chief  judge  shall
    19  also  create one class for each region with three (3) judgeships in each
    20  class; and assign the remaining associate judges and new or vacant seats
    21  equally among the regional classes; so their successors  or  new  judges
    22  can  be  nominated by the regional governor of the region of whose class
    23  they were assigned.   The court of  appeals  shall  have  the  power  to
    24  appoint  from its members its chief judge who will serve at the pleasure
    25  of the court. The court of appeals shall have power to  appoint  and  to
    26  remove  its  clerk. A majority of the court may decide to hear or reject
    27  appeals from a Regional Superior Court. Two-thirds (2/3) members of  the
    28  court  shall constitute a quorum, and the concurrence of at least three-
    29  quarters (3/4) of full Court of Appeals judges shall be necessary  to  a
    30  decision  on  an appeal from a Regional Superior Court; however when the
    31  Court of Appeals has original jurisdiction only a majority vote will  be
    32  needed for a decision. When the Court of Appeals cannot reach a decision
    33  the lower court ruling is upheld, except where the judgment is of death,
    34  where the Court of Appeals must reach a decision or a lower court ruling
    35  allowing  death  is overturned. The powers and jurisdiction of the court
    36  shall not be suspended for want of appointment when the number of judges
    37  is sufficient to constitute a quorum.
    38    (v) The commission on judicial nomination members  shall  be  replaced
    39  and shall be chosen as follows: four shall be appointed by each regional
    40  governor,  four  by  the chief judge of the court of appeals, one by the
    41  regional speaker of each regional assembly, one  by  regional  temporary
    42  president  of  each  regional senate, one by regional minority leader of
    43  each regional senate, and  one  by  regional  minority  leader  of  each
    44  regional assembly. Of the four members appointed by each of the regional
    45  governors,  no  more  than  two  shall be enrolled in the same political
    46  party, two shall be members of the bar of the state or region,  and  two
    47  shall  not  be  members  of  the bar of the state or region. Of the four
    48  members appointed by the chief judge of the court of  appeals,  no  more
    49  than  two  shall  be  enrolled in the same political party, two shall be
    50  members of the bar of the state or region, and two shall not be  members
    51  of  the  bar  of  the state or region. No member of the commission shall
    52  hold or have held any judicial office or hold any elected public  office
    53  for  which  he  or she receives compensation during his or her period of
    54  service, except that the governor and the chief judge may  each  appoint
    55  no  more than one former judge or justice of the state or regional court
    56  system to such commission. No member of the commission  shall  hold  any

        A. 4446                            17
 
     1  office  in  any  political  party.  No member of the judicial nominating
     2  commission shall be eligible for appointment to judicial office  in  any
     3  court  of  the state during the member's period of service or within one
     4  year thereafter.
     5    (vi) The members appointed by the state governor, the temporary presi-
     6  dent  of the senate, the speaker of the assembly and the minority leader
     7  of the senate shall be removed from the commission on December 1st after
     8  the regional governors are elected for the first time. The members first
     9  appointed by each regional governor shall have  respectively  one,  two,
    10  three  and  four  year  terms as that regional governor shall designate.
    11  Each subsequent appointment by a regional governor shall be for  a  term
    12  of four years and those appointed by the chief judge shall be for a term
    13  of  four  years.  The  other  members  shall  have  a term of two years.
    14  Appointments to fill a vacancy shall only be for the  remainder  of  the
    15  term.
    16    (vii)  The  commission shall consider the qualifications of candidates
    17  for appointment to the offices of judge and chief judge of the court  of
    18  appeals and, whenever a vacancy in those offices occurs, shall prepare a
    19  written  report  and  recommend  to the appropriate regional governor or
    20  state governor at least seven persons who are well qualified  for  those
    21  judicial offices.
    22    (viii)  The  appropriate  regional  governor  shall  appoint, with the
    23  advice and consent of his/her regional senate, from among list of  those
    24  recommended  by the judicial nominating commission, a person to fill the
    25  office of Court of Appeals judge, whenever a vacancy occurs in  a  court
    26  of appeals in a seat in the class assigned to his/her region. The appro-
    27  priate  regional  governor shall transmit to his/her regional senate the
    28  written report of the commission on judicial nomination relating to  the
    29  nominee;  provided,  however, that no person may be appointed a judge of
    30  the court of appeals by a regional governor  unless  such  person  is  a
    31  resident of that governor's region and has been admitted to the practice
    32  of  law  in  that  region  or  in  this  state. The state governor shall
    33  appoint, with the advice and consent of the  state  senate,  from  among
    34  those  recommended  by  the  judicial nominating commission, a person to
    35  fill the office of of Court of Appeals judge whenever a  vacancy  occurs
    36  in  a  court  of  appeals  in  seat in first class assigned to the state
    37  governor; provided, however, that no person may be appointed a judge  of
    38  the court of appeals by the state governor unless such person is a resi-
    39  dent  of  the state and has been admitted to the practice of law in this
    40  state or a region within this state for at least ten years. The governor
    41  shall transmit to the senate the written report  of  the  commission  on
    42  judicial nomination relating to the nominee.
    43    (ix)  The jurisdiction of the Court of Appeals shall be limited to the
    44  review of questions of law on appeal  from  a  Regional  Superior  Court
    45  except  where  the  judgment is of death. The Court of Appeals will only
    46  hear those appeals where at least two-thirds (2/3) of Court  of  Appeals
    47  judges  vote  to  hear  the case. The Court of Appeals shall continue to
    48  have the final say in interpreting New York State law  and  whether  New
    49  York  State  laws  are  Constitutional  when hearing appeals on New York
    50  State law from the appellate divisions. All appeals from  the  appellate
    51  divisions  on  regional law, local law, regional charter, regional regu-
    52  lation, or local regulation must  first  be  heard  by  the  appropriate
    53  Regional  Superior  Court before being appealed to the Court of Appeals.
    54  The Court of Appeals may only reverse a Regional Superior  Court  ruling
    55  or  a lower court ruling that a Regional Superior Court has let stand if
    56  at least three-quarters (3/4) of Court of Appeals judges vote to reverse

        A. 4446                            18
 
     1  the ruling.  The Court of Appeals shall have  original  jurisdiction  of
     2  actions of one region against another region.
     3    (x)  The  state  shall  be divided into six judicial departments.  The
     4  first department shall consist of the  counties  within  the  first  and
     5  twelfth  judicial  districts  of  the state. The second department shall
     6  consist of the counties within the second,  ninth,  eleventh  and  thir-
     7  teenth  judicial  districts  of  the  state.  The third department shall
     8  consist of the counties within the third, fourth, sixth  and  fourteenth
     9  judicial  districts of the state. The fourth department shall consist of
    10  the counties within the fifth, seventh and eighth judicial districts  of
    11  the state. The fifth department shall consist of the counties within the
    12  tenth  and  fifteenth  judicial districts of the state. A Sixth Judicial
    13  Department shall be created consisting of remaining parts of ninth Judi-
    14  cial District in Rockland  and  Westchester  counties.  Each  department
    15  shall  be  bounded  by  the  lines of judicial districts. Once every ten
    16  years the applicable regional legislature may alter  the  boundaries  of
    17  the  judicial departments in its region, but without changing the number
    18  thereof and no judicial department may be drawn in such a  way  to  have
    19  counties from more than a single Region.
    20    (xi)  Each  of  the justices of the appellate divisions of the supreme
    21  court are continued as justices and shall serve in  the  department  and
    22  region they reside.  Appellate divisions of the supreme court shall have
    23  name  of  its region, and shall consist of at least five justices of the
    24  supreme court but the exact number in each department shall  be  set  by
    25  applicable region's law. In each appellate division, four justices shall
    26  constitute  a quorum, and the concurrence of three shall be necessary to
    27  a decision. No more than five justices shall sit in any case.
    28    (xii) The justices of each appellate division shall be  designated  by
    29  the  appropriate regional governor, from all the justices elected to the
    30  supreme court for terms of five years or the unexpired portions of their
    31  respective terms of office, if less than five years,  and  each  justice
    32  during  his or her term of office shall be a resident of the department.
    33  The justices of  each  appellate  division  shall  elect  the  presiding
    34  justice  of  their  appellate  division,  for  a two year term. Until an
    35  election is held the appropriate regional governor  shall  designate  an
    36  acting presiding justice.
    37    (xiii)  The  state  shall  be divided into judicial districts.  Unless
    38  otherwise stated in this article all judicial districts  shall  continue
    39  to  keep  the same boundaries that existed prior to the adoption of this
    40  article unless modified according to section 6 of  Article  VI.  If  any
    41  judicial  district  exists  in  more than one region it shall be divided
    42  into separate districts along the regional boundary.
    43    (xiv) Once every ten years the  applicable  regional  legislature  may
    44  increase  or  decrease  the  number  of  judicial districts or alter the
    45  composition  of  judicial  districts  and  thereupon  re-apportion   the
    46  justices  to  be thereafter elected in the judicial districts so altered
    47  and/or assign judicial districts to  a  different  judicial  department.
    48  Each  judicial  district  shall  be bounded by county lines. No judicial
    49  district may be drawn in such a way to have counties from  more  than  a
    50  single region or be assigned to judicial department not contained within
    51  its region.
    52    (xv) Each supreme court shall have the name of its region added to the
    53  beginning of its title.
    54    (xvi)  The  provisions of this section shall in no way limit or impair
    55  the jurisdiction of the regional supreme court as set forth  in  section
    56  seven  of  this  article.   All proceedings of the family court shall be

        A. 4446                            19
 
     1  open to the public, however the court may require that  only  the  first
     2  names  of the minors and their parents or their relatives be used in its
     3  proceedings and shall prohibit video and photo(s) of its proceedings.
     4    (xvii)  The  state  legislature may provide for the manner of trial of
     5  actions and proceedings involving claims against the state.  The  appro-
     6  priate  regional  legislature  may  provide  by regional law what claims
     7  against its region or local governments may be  heard  by  its  regional
     8  court of claims and whether a jury trial will be allowed.
     9    (xviii)  Each  court  shall  exercise  jurisdiction over any action or
    10  proceeding transferred to it pursuant to this section, but no action  or
    11  proceeding shall ever be transferred out of its original region.
    12    (xix)  There shall be a commission on judicial conduct. The commission
    13  on judicial  conduct  shall  receive,  initiate,  investigate  and  hear
    14  complaints  with  respect  to  the  conduct,  qualifications, fitness to
    15  perform or performance of official duties of any judge or justice of the
    16  unified court system, in the manner provided by law; and  may  determine
    17  that  a  judge or justice be admonished, censured or removed from office
    18  for cause, including, but not limited to, misconduct in office, persist-
    19  ent failure to perform his or her  duties,  habitual  intemperance,  and
    20  conduct,  on  or  off  the  bench,  prejudicial to the administration of
    21  justice, or that a judge or justice be retired for  mental  or  physical
    22  disability  preventing  the  proper  performance  of his or her judicial
    23  duties. The commission shall transmit such determination  to  the  chief
    24  judge  of  the  court  of appeals who shall cause written notice of such
    25  determination to be given to the judge or justice involved.  Such  judge
    26  or  justice  may  either  accept  the commission's determination or make
    27  written request to the chief judge of the court of appeals  if  part  of
    28  state  unified court system or chief justice of the appropriate Regional
    29  Superior Court if part of regional unified court system,  within  thirty
    30  days after receipt of such notice, for a review of such determination by
    31  the  court  of  appeals  or the appropriate Regional Superior Court. Any
    32  complaint about a justice who is a member of a regional  Superior  Court
    33  shall  be  referred  to  the  members  of the applicable regional senate
    34  committee(s) for investigation and  appropriate  action.  Any  complaint
    35  about  a judge who is a member of the Court of Appeals shall be referred
    36  to all members of the applicable state senate committee(s) for  investi-
    37  gation  and  appropriate  action, as this commission on judicial conduct
    38  shall have no jurisdiction over them. The commission on judicial conduct
    39  members shall be replaced and shall be chosen as follows: four shall  be
    40  appointed  by  each  regional  governor,  one by each regional temporary
    41  president of the regional senates, one by the minority leader of each of
    42  the regional senates, one by each speaker of  the  regional  assemblies,
    43  one  by the minority leader of each of the regional assemblies and three
    44  by the chief judge of the court of appeals. Of the members appointed  by
    45  the regional governors none shall be a member of the bar of the state or
    46  region  nor  a  judge or justice.  Of the members appointed by the chief
    47  judge all shall be members of the bar of the state or  region.  None  of
    48  the persons to be appointed by the legislative leaders shall be justices
    49  or  judges  or  retired  justices or judges. The chief judge of court of
    50  appeals shall break any tie votes of the commission within  three  days.
    51  The persons first appointed by each regional governor shall have respec-
    52  tively  one,  two, three, and four-year terms as the applicable regional
    53  governor shall designate. The chief judge of the court of appeals  shall
    54  designate  remaining  terms  of  members of the commission in such a way
    55  that no more than one quarter of persons appointed shall have their term
    56  expire in any given  year.  Each  member  of  the  commission  shall  be

        A. 4446                            20
 
     1  appointed  thereafter  for  a  term  of four years.   A vacancy shall be
     2  filled by the appointing officer for the remainder of the term.
     3    (xx)  Judges of the court of appeals and Judges of the court of claims
     4  may be removed by concurrent resolution of  both  houses  of  the  state
     5  legislature,  if  three-fifths  of all the members elected to each house
     6  concur therein.
     7    (xxi) Justices of the Regional Superior Court, Justices of the supreme
     8  court, judges of the regional court of claims,  the  county  court,  the
     9  surrogate's court, the family court, the courts for the city of New York
    10  established  pursuant to this article, the district court and such other
    11  courts as the legislature may determine, may be removed by the  applica-
    12  ble  regional  senate,  on the recommendation of the applicable regional
    13  governor, if three-fifths of all the members  elected  to  the  regional
    14  senate concur therein.
    15    (xxii)  Temporary  assignments of all the foregoing judges or justices
    16  listed in this section, and of judges of the city courts, shall be  made
    17  by the appropriate regional chief administrator of the courts in accord-
    18  ance  with  established  regional standards and administrative policies,
    19  but no judge or justice shall be assigned outside his/her region.
    20    (xxiii) (1) The chief judge of the court of appeals shall be the chief
    21  judge of the state of New York and shall be the chief  judicial  officer
    22  of  the  state  unified court system consisting of the Court of Appeals,
    23  the Court of Claims and the State Commission on Judicial Conduct.  There
    24  shall  be  an  administrative board of the courts which shall consist of
    25  the chief judge of the court of appeals as chairperson and two associate
    26  judges of the court of appeals selected by the court.  The  chief  judge
    27  shall,  with  the  advice and consent of the administrative board of the
    28  courts, appoint a chief administrator of  the  state  courts  who  shall
    29  serve at the pleasure of the chief judge.
    30    (2)  The  chief  administrator of the state courts shall keep an up to
    31  date version of the New York State Constitution, New  York  State  laws,
    32  charters, rules and regulations on the court's website; and links to all
    33  regional  chief  administrators  of  regional  courts'  websites and all
    34  regional secretary of state websites. Each region's secretary  of  state
    35  shall keep on a regional department of state website up to date versions
    36  of  the New York State Constitution, that region's laws, charters, rules
    37  and regulations, local charters, laws, ordinances and  rules  and  regu-
    38  lations within that region.
    39    (xxiv)  The  state legislature shall provide for the allocation of the
    40  cost of operating and maintaining the court of  appeals,  the  court  of
    41  claims,  the judicial nominating commission, and the State Commission on
    42  Judicial Conduct. Each region shall fund its own  courts;  the  Regional
    43  Superior  Court,  the  appellate  division  of the supreme court in each
    44  judicial department, the supreme courts, the county courts,  the  surro-
    45  gate's  courts,  the  family courts, the courts for the city of New York
    46  and the district courts.
    47    § 7. Full Faith and Credit shall be given in each Region to the public
    48  acts, records, licenses, permits, and judicial Proceedings of the  other
    49  Regions. The State Legislature may by state laws prescribe the manner in
    50  which  such  acts,  records,  and  proceedings  shall be proved, and the
    51  effect thereof. Licenses and permits  previously  issued  by  the  state
    52  shall  remain  in  effect  until their expiration date, when they may be
    53  renewed with the Region.
    54    § 8. This new article XX shall supersede any  part  of  the  New  York
    55  State  Constitution  it conflicts with. If any part of this amendment is

        A. 4446                            21
 
     1  found to be unconstitutional by a court of  competent  jurisdiction  the
     2  remainder shall remain in effect.
     3    §  2. Resolved (if the Senate concur), That article 9 of the constitu-
     4  tion be amended by adding a new section 4 to read as follows:
     5    § 4. Owners of parcels of land that are adjacent to each other or only
     6  separated by a road, highway, railroad, body of water, and/or a  waterc-
     7  ourse  within a single county may separate from any city (cities) and/or
     8  town(s) whose jurisdiction the land is currently under, and  incorporate
     9  a  new  town. First, the owners must draw up a map and prepare a charter
    10  of the proposed town and have one fifth (1/5) of the owners of  land  in
    11  the  proposed  new town sign a petition agreeing to the map and charter.
    12  The proposed town must have at least two thousand (2000) people residing
    13  in it. The charter they draft shall describe how any special district(s)
    14  will be affected and when the charter will  take  effect  and  when  the
    15  special  election  to  fill offices created for the first time under the
    16  charter will be held. Second the map, charter and petition must be filed
    17  with the county board of elections where the proposed  town  will  exist
    18  before  September  1st  of any year. The county board of elections shall
    19  then schedule a vote on the proposed town on the next  election  day  in
    20  November.    Only voters who reside within the proposed town may vote on
    21  creating it. If a majority of those voting approve it the new town  will
    22  be  created  and  will  cease  to be part of the municipality or munici-
    23  palities it separates from thirty days after the  new  town's  officials
    24  take  office.  The  new  town  and the municipality or municipalities it
    25  separates from should negotiate fair prices for water,  sewer  or  other
    26  services  that  must  continue  to  be shared. If an agreement cannot be
    27  reached either may petition the Appellate Division of Supreme  court  to
    28  set  the  prices  for  up  to four years at a time.  Should anyone go to
    29  court to block the creation of the new town and not prevail  they  shall
    30  pay  the reasonable legal fees and court costs of those trying to create
    31  the new town.
    32    § 3. Resolved (if the Senate concur), That article 8 of the  constitu-
    33  tion  be  amended  by  adding  two  new  sections 2-b and 2-c to read as
    34  follows:
    35    § 2-b. In the New Amsterdam region and Montauk Region the fiscal  year
    36  of  any  county,  city, town, village or other district excluding school
    37  and library districts shall be from December 1st to November 30th of the
    38  following year. Whenever a proposed budget  increase  shall  exceed  two
    39  percent  (2%) from the previous year's budget or a proposed property tax
    40  rate increase shall exceed two percent (2%)  from  the  previous  year's
    41  property  tax  rate;  the  proposed  budget  and/or  property  tax  rate
    42  increased shall be submitted to their voters for a yes or  no  vote,  on
    43  Election Day in November. Sixty (60) percent of voters voting on it must
    44  vote yes for it to be approved. If approved the budget shall take effect
    45  at  the  start  of  fiscal  year and property taxes will be collected as
    46  defined by law; however if defeated or no budget/property tax rate  vote
    47  was  held, the budget that county, city, town, village or other district
    48  excluding school districts must have a budget increase of less than  two
    49  percent  (2%)  and  the property tax rate increase must be less than two
    50  percent (2%).  Regional laws may be enacted to enforce this section.
    51    § 2-c. In the New Amsterdam region and Montauk Region the fiscal  year
    52  of  all school and library districts shall be from July 1st to June 30th
    53  of the following year. The school  budget  shall  be  submitted  to  the
    54  voters,  for  a yes or no vote, on a day in May or June that is selected
    55  by law and any primaries held during May or June will occur on the  same
    56  day  at  same  election district polling places with the same poll hours

        A. 4446                            22
 
     1  statewide. If a proposed budget increase shall exceed two  percent  (2%)
     2  from the previous year's budget or a proposed property tax rate increase
     3  shall  exceed  two  percent  (2%)  from the previous year's property tax
     4  rate,  sixty  (60)  percent  of voters voting must vote yes for it to be
     5  approved. If the budget is approved it will take effect  as  defined  by
     6  law.  If  a school district budget is defeated a contingency budget will
     7  be adopted; the amount of any contingency budget increase shall be  less
     8  than  two  percent  (2%),  per  enrolled  student as of July 1st.   If a
     9  library district budget is defeated the  district  must  have  a  budget
    10  increase  of  less  than  two  percent  (2%)  and  the property tax rate
    11  increase must be less than  two  percent  (2%).  Regional  laws  may  be
    12  enacted to enforce this section.
    13    §  4. Resolved (if the Senate concur), That section 2 of article 19 of
    14  the constitution be amended to read as follows:
    15    § 2. At the general election to be held in the year  nineteen  hundred
    16  fifty-seven, and every twentieth year thereafter, and also at such times
    17  as  the  legislature  may by law provide, the question "Shall there be a
    18  convention to revise the constitution and  amend  the  same?"  shall  be
    19  submitted  to  and  decided  by the electors of the state; and in case a
    20  majority of the electors voting thereon  shall  decide  in  favor  of  a
    21  convention  for  such purpose, the electors of every [senate district of
    22  the state, as then organized,  shall  elect  three  delegates]  regional
    23  senate  district  of  the  state,  as  then organized, shall elect three
    24  delegates and their votes shall be weighed  by  the  population  of  the
    25  delegate's   Regional  Senate  District  at  the  next  ensuing  general
    26  election[, and the electors of the state voting  at  the  same  election
    27  shall  elect fifteen delegates-at-large]. The delegates so elected shall
    28  convene at the capitol on the first Tuesday of April next ensuing  after
    29  their  election,  and shall continue their session until the business of
    30  such convention shall have been completed. Every delegate shall  receive
    31  for  his or her services the same compensation as shall then be annually
    32  payable to the members of the assembly  and  be  reimbursed  for  actual
    33  traveling  expenses,  while  the convention is in session, to the extent
    34  that a member of the assembly would then be entitled thereto in the case
    35  of a session of the legislature. A  majority  of  the  convention  shall
    36  constitute a quorum for the transaction of business, and no amendment to
    37  the  constitution  shall  be  submitted  for approval to the electors as
    38  hereinafter provided, unless by the assent of  a  majority  of  all  the
    39  delegates  elected to the convention, the ayes and noes being entered on
    40  the journal to be kept. The convention shall have the power  to  appoint
    41  such  officers,  employees  and assistants as it may deem necessary, and
    42  fix their compensation and to provide for the printing of its documents,
    43  journal, proceedings and other expenses of said convention. The  conven-
    44  tion  shall  determine  the rules of its own proceedings, choose its own
    45  officers, and be the judge of the election, returns  and  qualifications
    46  of  its  members.  In  case of a vacancy, by death, resignation or other
    47  cause, of any district delegate elected to the convention, such  vacancy
    48  shall  be  filled  by a vote of the remaining delegates representing the
    49  district in which such vacancy occurs. If such  vacancy  occurs  in  the
    50  office of a delegate-at-large, such vacancy shall be filled by a vote of
    51  the remaining delegates-at-large. Any proposed constitution or constitu-
    52  tional amendment which shall have been adopted by such convention, shall
    53  be  submitted  to a vote of the electors of the state at the time and in
    54  the manner provided by such convention, at an election  which  shall  be
    55  held  not  less than six weeks after the adjournment of such convention.
    56  Upon the approval of such constitution or constitutional amendments,  in

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     1  the  manner provided in the last preceding section, such constitution or
     2  constitutional amendment, shall go into effect on the first day of Janu-
     3  ary next after such approval.
     4    § 5. Resolved (if the Senate concur), That article 11 of the constitu-
     5  tion be REPEALED and a new article 11 be added to read as follows:
     6                                 ARTICLE XI
     7                                  EDUCATION
 
     8    Each  Regional  legislature  shall  provide  for  the  maintenance and
     9  support of a system of free common schools, wherein all the children  of
    10  this  state  may  be educated and shall provide for a Regional education
    11  department. The legislature may provide for the transportation of  chil-
    12  dren to and from any school or institution of learning.
    13    § 6. Resolved (if the Senate concur), That article 19 of the constitu-
    14  tion be amended by adding a new section 4 to read as follows:
    15    §  4.  No  future  amendment or new state constitution can be approved
    16  unless at least 55 percent of the voters voting on it in the New Amster-
    17  dam Region, 55 percent of the voters voting on it in the Montauk  Region
    18  and  at  least  55  percent  of  the voters voting on it in the New York
    19  Region all approve the changes.
    20    § 7. Resolved (if the Senate concur), That section 1 of article  5  of
    21  the  constitution  be  REPEALED  and a new section 1 be added to read as
    22  follows:
    23    Section 1. (a) In elections held after  the  regional  governors  take
    24  office  for  the first time the state comptroller shall be elected for a
    25  term of office of five  years,  and  shall  possess  the  qualifications
    26  provided  in  section 2 of article IV. The legislature shall provide for
    27  filling vacancies in the office of comptroller. The comptroller shall be
    28  required: (i) to audit all vouchers  before  payment  and  all  official
    29  accounts;  (ii)  to audit the accrual and collection of all revenues and
    30  receipts; and (iii) to prescribe  such  methods  of  accounting  as  are
    31  necessary  for  the performance of the foregoing duties.  The payment of
    32  any moneys of the state, or of any moneys  under  its  control,  or  the
    33  refund  of  any moneys paid to the state, except upon audit by the comp-
    34  troller, shall be void, and may be  restrained  upon  the  suit  of  any
    35  taxpayer with the consent of the supreme court in the appellate division
    36  on notice to the appropriate regional attorney-general.
    37    (b)  In  such  respect the appropriate regional legislature only shall
    38  define the powers and duties and may also assign  to  him  or  her:  (i)
    39  supervision  of  the  accounts  of  any  political  subdivision of their
    40  region; and (ii) powers and duties pertaining to or connected  with  the
    41  assessment  and  taxation  of  real  estate,  including determination of
    42  ratios which the assessed valuation of taxable real  property  bears  to
    43  the  full  valuation  thereof, but not including any of those powers and
    44  duties reserved to officers of a county, city, town or village by virtue
    45  of sections seven and eight of article nine of  this  constitution.  The
    46  appropriate  regional legislature shall assign to him or her no adminis-
    47  trative duties, excepting such as may be incidental to  the  performance
    48  of  these  functions,  any  other  provision of this constitution to the
    49  contrary notwithstanding. The office of comptroller shall also calculate
    50  annually the median annual income of individuals in the state.
    51    § 8. Resolved (if the Senate concur), That section 6 of article  3  of
    52  the constitution be REPEALED.
    53    §  9. Resolved (if the Senate concur), That the foregoing amendment be
    54  referred to the first regular legislative session  convening  after  the
    55  next  succeeding  general  election  of members of the assembly, and, in

        A. 4446                            24
 
     1  conformity with  section  1  of  article  19  of  the  constitution,  be
     2  published for 3 months previous to the time of such election.
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