Wednesday, January 24, 2007

State Leaders Ready to Merge 2 Ethics Panels

The New Sheriff of Albany

"ALBANY, Jan. 23 — Gov. Eliot Spitzer and legislative leaders are expected to announce an agreement on Wednesday to combine two state commissions that look into lobbying and ethics, merging them in a bid to centralize investigations into corruption, people with knowledge of the discussions said.
One panel, the Temporary State Commission on Lobbying, has been investigating whether an Albany-area business executive broke any state laws by providing free or discounted flights to the Senate majority leader,
Joseph L. Bruno — who is also the subject of a federal investigation. That commission is also believed to be examining flights that another executive provided to Eliot Spitzer while he was running for governor.
The other panel, the State Ethics Commission, played a leading role in the inquiry that led to the resignation of the former state comptroller,
Alan G. Hevesi." for the rest of this extensive article click here and Newsday gives us their spin Ethics deal due they end their article with "It doesn't make any sense to me," said Blair Horner of the New York Public Interest Research Group. "Why would you merge those agencies and why would you create a new agency with no public input? There have been no bills on this. There have been no hearings on this." Hey must be the only one that doesn't get it........ Maybe a greater concentration of power under one head with the ability to investigate charges across the board and actually hold people accountable for their actions??.....obviously the current setup is definitely not working too well.......meanwhile the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle alerts us Tougher ethics standards in the works and the UticaOD.Com wants one ethics agency Create one ethics panel for state and the New York Post gives us SPITZ-SHINED DEAL ON ETHICS REFORM

"ALBANY - After less than a month in office, Gov. Spitzer has pushed legislative leaders to agree to unprecedented ethics reforms for scandal-plagued Albany, sources told The Post last night.
The far-reaching corruption-busting overhaul will ban lawmakers from giving paid speeches, outlaw gifts to them, halt lobbyists' paying for their travel and lodging, curtail the "revolving door" for aides, and establish a powerful new corruption-busting agency to police the state Capitol.
Spitzer, known while state attorney general as the "Sheriff of Wall Street," made cleaning up Albany his top campaign priority." Spitzer does mean business here...everybody is starting to get a full view of what "Day One" is all about......andy

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