Articles Posted in Legislative Information

October 2009 – September 2010.

Issued October 2010

New York State fully implemented changes to its drug laws on October 7, 2009. This report provides a preliminary update of the impact during the first year. More comprehensive reports will be issued in the coming months. The preliminary review shows that because of the drug law changes:

A selected list of CRS Reports posted between August 11, 2010 and September 10, 2010. Although almost all of the CRS Reports in the following list relate in some way to crime and criminal justice, a few addressing other topics where readers have expressed an interest have also been included.:

Deprivation of Honest Services as a Basis for Federal Mail and Wire Fraud Convictions

Report No. R40852 Subjects: Criminal Justice CRS Reports, 111th Congress (7/28/2010; Posted: 8/11/2010)

House Democrats are reported to be making a final push this weekend to pass health care legislation. To that end a nearly final version of a bill, along with a report on the bill’s cost by the Congressional Budget Office, was unveiled yesterday. A final showdown regarding this legislation is expected this Sunday March 21.

As part of our series of postings regarding efforts to overhaul the health care system in the United States we are making the following documents accessible:

03/18/2010 Section-by-Section Summary of the Substitute Amendment to the Reconciliation Act, H.R. 4872

Two days ago I posted information on this blog related to the New York Court of Appeals decision (Maron v. Silver, 16 ‘ Larabee v. Governor, 7 ; Chief Judge v. Governor, 18) addressing judicial compensation in that state within the framework of separation of powers. Today I have learned that the State of Connecticut is also confronted with separation of powers issues related to its judiciary. These issues relate at least in part to the unilateral reduction of Other Judicial Expense line items (where the law libraries are placed) by the Office of Policy and Management (Executive Branch) after the initial budget allocations have presumably been agreed upon.

Of special concern to many readers of this blog is the severe negative impact these judicial line item reductions are having on judicial law libraries in the State of Connecicut, as indicated in testimony of the Connecticut Chief Court Administrator to the Appropriations Committee included in this post and by the many expressions of concern among Connecticut citizens as reported elsewhere.

The Chief Court Administrator of Connecticut, Judge Barbara M. Quinn has argued before the Appropriations Committee on February 9 that the unilateral reduction of Other Judicial Expense line items by the Executive Branch infringes on the Separation of Powers and can be remedied by OPM simply transmitting the Judicial request unchanged to the legislature. Two sections of Judge Quinn’s testimony are especially important and are highlighted below in this posting. The section on Law Libraries which highlights the importance of law libraries in Connecticut to both the Judiciary and the public has relevance both in Connecticut and throughout the nation. A second part of Judge Quinn’s testimony highlighted below is her statement on “Concurrence in Allotment Reductions and Rescissions,” which frames the issue nicely.

As almost everyone knows, the 2011 U.S. Budget was submitted on February 1. Since this is such a huge budget, in terms of both bulk and scope, we have decided to limit this posting largely to links to some ” Budget Fact Sheets” prepared by the Office of Management and Budget. Each separately linked fact sheet focuses on a particular priority or group of priorities related to this budget request, thus enabling you to quickly “pick and choose” those areas that interest and concern you without devoting considerable time to other parts of the budget. If you wish to examine this budget request in greater detail, go to the GPO Access link at the end of this posting.

Here are links to the Budget Fact Sheets::

Keeping America Safe and Secure

Yesterday January 19, 2010 New York State Governor David Paterson proposed a 2010-11 Executive Budget that according to a Press Release from the Governor’s Office “makes significant spending reductions in order to eliminate a $7.4 billion deficit and institutes key reforms to put New York on the road to economic and fiscal recovery. The Executive Budget proposal includes spending reductions across every area of the budget; limits State spending to far below both the Governor’s proposed spending cap and the rate of inflation; implements the most significant public higher education reforms in a generation; and provides fiscal relief to local governments through an aggressive mandate reform agenda.”

Below are links to some of the documents related to that proposal. Some of these documents are related primarily to the proposed State of New York Executive Budget as a whole while others include various agency presnetations, A link to State of New York Chief Judge Jonathan Lippman’s commentary on the Governors observations regarding the judiciary part of the budget proposal is also included.

Link to Press Release , video presentation and various other documents related to Governors budget Address on January 19:

During every session of the New York Legislature the current governor and his staff prepare bills addressing his or her objectives to be introduced directly in the legislature by the Governor. While it is assumed that legislatures in other states have similar mechanisms, this posting is only concernd with Governor’s programs in the State of New York.

When first introduced, these program bills are only sponsored by the Governor but once they have been introduced, members of the legislature can and often do add their names as sponsors. It is my understanding that once such a bill is introduced the process by which it works its way through the legislature is similar to other legislation except that if such a bill is amended while under consideration, it is then sent back to the Governor’s office for review, further modification etc.

In conversations I have had with people in the Governor’s office it was emphasized that Governor’s Programs should not be considered identical with other legislation introduced directly by individuall or groups of legislators and that Budget programs are separate from the Governor’s Program being discussed here. During those conversations the following book was recemmended as an excellent source for further information on this topic:

A List of New York State Chapter Laws Signed in 2009. Arranged in decending order. Includes Chapter Numbers, Bill Numbers and Titles
To retrieve the text of any of the New York Chapter laws listed below, go to http://public.leginfo.state.ny.us/menuf.cgi

507 S66007 KLEIN — Relates to home mortgage loans, the crime of mortgage fraud, and appropriations to the NYS housing trust fund corporation

506 A40012 Rules (Brodsky) — Creates the authorities budget office; repealer

505 A2209C Brodsky — Creates an independent authority budget office; repealer

504 A40026 Rules (Silver) — Provides retirement benefits for new entrants to certain public retirement systems

503 A40023 Budget — Implements savings adjustments to the state fiscal plan

502 A40022 Budget — Amends various provisions of chapters of the laws 2009 making appropriations for the support of government

501 A40021 Budget — Authorizes commissioner of taxation and finance to administer accounts receivable discount program with respect to certain overdue tax liabilities

500 A40011 Rules (Destito) — Authorizes term appointments without examination for certain information technology positions

499 S66009 BRESLIN — Relates to the licensure of life settlement brokers; creates certain crimes relating to life settlement fraud; relates to premium finance agreement; repealer

498 S66006 BRESLIN — Establishes a special enrollment period for employees and members with expired health coverage who wish to utilize state continuation benefits
497 S66004A THOMPSON — Authorizes municipalities to create a municipal sustainable energy loan program

496 A40008 Rules (Weisenberg) — Relates to operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol or drugs with a child passenger

495 S66005 VALESKY — Relates to eligibility of certain felony offenders for parole and medical parole

494 S66002 STEWART-COUSINS — Enacts into law major components of legislation necessary for the efficient operation of local governments; repealer

493 A8924 Hoyt — Establishes the crime of aggravated interference with health care services in the first and second degrees

492 A7779 Rosenthal — Relates to the duties of the municipal police training council

491 A5643 Farrell — Raises minimum salary of each of the county clerks of the counties comprising the city of New York to that of supreme court justices instead of civil court judges Continue reading

THOMAS was launched on January 5, 1995, at the inception of the 104th Congress. The leadership of the 104th Congress directed the Library of Congress to make federal legislative information freely available to the public. Since that time THOMAS has expanded the scope of its offerings to include many features and content including those listed below.:

Bills, Resolutions Activity in Congress Congressional Record Schedules, Calendars Committee Information Presidential Nominations

Now, fifteen years later in response to user feedback and in celebration of its fifteenth anniversary, THOMAS has been updated for the second session of the 111th Congress.