Requires that any ballot proposition creating a state debt shall contain an estimate of the amortization period and the total expected debt service payable thereon until the bonds issued pursuant to such proposition are retired.
BILL NUMBER: S1762
TITLE OF BILL : An act to amend the election law and the state finance law, in relation to requiring proposition authorizing the creation of a state debt to contain an estimate of the debt service payable thereon and requiring publication of an explanation thereof
PURPOSE : This bill would provide greater accuracy and understanding for the voting public by requiring the listing in the ballot proposition of the total debt expected from a bond act.
SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS : Adds a new §7-112 to the Election Law to require that any ballot Proposition creating a state debt shall contain an estimate of the amortization period and total expected debt service payments. Amend, §4-116 of the Election Law to incorporate such reference in ballot publication requirements. Adds a new §6 to the State Finance Law to require that any state publications promoting awareness of, or explaining provisions in, such a proposition shall include the amortization and total debt information.
JUSTIFICATION : Current law provides that ballot propositions must show the principal amount of proposed debt. This is extremely misleading, as the actual taxpayer cost of the debt must also include the interest to be paid. On long term debt, interest payments can more than double the principal amount. State publications often play an important role in educating the public about ballot issues. Accordingly, these should show the true total cost of any new debt.
HISTORY OF BILL : S.918/A.4831 of 2007-08 passed the Senate in 2007 and 2008. S.1851/A.1178A of 2005-06 passed the Senate in 2005 and 2006, S.965/A.1299 of 2003-04 was referred to the Committee on Elections, S.2006/A.3392 of 2001-02 passed the Senate in 2001 and 2002, S.1958/A.3356 of 1999-2000 passed the Senate in 1999 and 2000, S.2651/A.4345 of 1997-98 passed the Senate in 1997 and 1998, S.1861/ A.2681 of 1995-96 passed the Senate in 1995 and 1996, S.1617/A.2776 of 1993-94 passed the Senate in 1993 and 1994. See also S.2753/A.4272 of 1991-1992. Derived from S.2793/A.4090 and S.2791/A.4091 of 1989-1990.
FISCAL IMPACT : None.
EFFECTIVE DATE : Immediate.
STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 1762 2009-2010 Regular Sessions IN SENATE February 6, 2009 ___________Introduced by Sen. FARLEY -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Elections AN ACT to amend the election law and the state finance law, in relation to requiring proposition authorizing the creation of a state debt to contain an estimate of the debt service payable thereon and requiring publication of an explanation thereof THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. The election law is amended by adding a new section 7-112 to read as follows: S 7-112. BALLOTS; FORM FOR PROPOSITION; ADDITIONAL REQUIREMENTS. EACH DULY CERTIFIED PROPOSITION CONTAINED ON THE BALLOT AND SUBMITTED TO THE VOTERS OF THE STATE WHICH PROVIDES FOR THE CREATION OF A STATE DEBT SHALL CONTAIN AN ESTIMATE OF THE ANTICIPATED NUMBER OF YEARS OVER WHICH SUCH DEBT SHALL BE AMORTIZED AND THE TOTAL EXPECTED DEBT SERVICE PAYABLE ON THE PRINCIPAL AMOUNT OF SUCH BONDS UNTIL THEIR RETIREMENT. SUCH INFORMATION SHALL BE PRINTED IN THE LARGEST TYPE WHICH IS PRACTICABLE TO USE IN THE SPACE PROVIDED FOR THE PROPOSITION. SUCH INFORMATION SHALL BE PROVIDED TO THE STATE BOARD OF ELECTIONS AND THE SECRETARY OF STATE BY THE STATE COMPTROLLER NOT LATER THAN SEVEN DAYS AFTER THE PASSAGE OF THE LAW AUTHORIZING SUCH PROPOSITION. S 2. Subdivision 2 of section 4-116 of the election law, as amended by chapter 60 of the laws of 1993, is amended to read as follows: 2. The state board of elections shall publish once in the week preced- ing any election at which proposed constitutional amendments or other propositions or questions are to be submitted to the voters of the state an abstract of such amendment or question, INCLUDING THE ESTIMATE OF THE AMORTIZATION PERIOD AND THE TOTAL ANTICIPATED DEBT SERVICE WHERE THE PROPOSITION AUTHORIZES THE CREATION OF A STATE DEBT, a brief statement of the law or proceedings authorizing such submission, a statement thatEXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD04057-01-9 S. 1762 2
such submission will be made and the form in which it is to be submit- ted. S 3. The state finance law is amended by adding a new section 6 to read as follows: S 6. STATE PUBLICATION CONCERNING PROPOSITION. ANY REPORT, PUBLICA- TION, PAMPHLET OR OTHER WRITTEN DOCUMENT PREPARED BY A STATE DEPARTMENT, AGENCY, AUTHORITY OR OTHER COMPONENT OR DIVISION OF STATE GOVERNMENT, INTENDED FOR DISTRIBUTION TO THE PUBLIC, WHICH IS INTENDED TO PROMOTE AWARENESS OF OR EXPLAIN THE PROVISIONS CONTAINED IN, OR INCIDENTAL TO, A DULY CERTIFIED PROPOSITION TO BE CONTAINED ON THE BALLOT AND TO BE SUBMITTED TO THE VOTERS OF THE STATE WHICH PROPOSITION PROVIDES FOR THE CREATION OF A STATE DEBT SHALL CONTAIN THEREIN AN ESTIMATE OF THE ANTIC- IPATED NUMBER OF YEARS OVER WHICH SUCH DEBT SHALL BE AMORTIZED AND THE TOTAL EXPECTED DEBT SERVICE PAYABLE ON THE PRINCIPAL AMOUNT OF SUCH BONDS UNTIL THEIR RETIREMENT. SUCH INFORMATION SHALL BE PRINTED IN THE LARGEST TYPE WHICH IS PRACTICABLE TO USE IN SUCH DOCUMENT. S 4. This act shall take effect immediately.