Bill S5297-2013

Authorizes the creation of a legislative dormitory facility; decreases legislative per diems; appropriation

Authorizes the creation of a legislative dormitory facility; decreases legislative per diems; appropriates $9 million.

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  • Jan 8, 2014: REFERRED TO FINANCE
  • May 16, 2013: REFERRED TO FINANCE

Memo

BILL NUMBER:S5297              REVISED 6/20/13

TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the public authorities law, in relation to authorizing a dormitory facility for the legislature; to amend the legislative law, in relation to per diems of legislative members; and making an appropriation therefor

TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the public authorities law, in relation to authorizing a dormitory facility for the legislature; to amend the legislative law, in relation to per diems of legislative members; and making an appropriation therefor

PURPOSE OR GENERAL IDEA OF BILL: To authorize the creation of a legislative dormitory which will eliminate the need for per diem allowances for housing.

SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS:

Section 1 amends the public authorities law by adding a new section, 1680r.

Section 2 grants responsibility for operation and maintenance of the dormitory facility to the New York State Dormitory Authority; allows per. diems for food only while in travel status in the performance of his or her duties, which would be equivalent to the most recent federal per diem rates published by the General Services Administration.

Section 3 appropriates the sum of nine million dollars, or so much thereof as may be necessary, to the dormitory authority for the purpose of carrying out the provisions of this act.

Section 4 states the effective date.

JUSTIFICATION: This bill would modify the current system for housing legislators while they are on government or legislative business in Albany. It would eliminate the current per diem (housing) reimbursement system and fund the construction of a legislative dormitory. The dormitory would be clean and comfortable but not extravagant, providing legislators with a safe space near the Capitol. At the same time, the dormitory could assist the local Albany economy by providing a use for commercial properties within walking distance of the Capitol which have been abandoned for years - as well as potential customers for local shops and restaurants.

Most importantly, once the dormitory construction is paid off, this legislation will save millions of dollars annually in taxpayer. money. The State would be expected break even on its 9 million investment in 5 years or less.

PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: None.

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: Approximately nine million dollars to complete construction of the dormitory with resulting savings of approximated two to three million dollars each year thereafter.

EFFECTIVE DATE: Immediately provided however that section 2 of this act shall take effect upon the date of occupancy of the legislative dormitory facility by members of the legislature.


Text

STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 5297 2013-2014 Regular Sessions IN SENATE May 16, 2013 ___________
Introduced by Sen. BOYLE -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Finance AN ACT to amend the public authorities law, in relation to authorizing a dormitory facility for the legislature; to amend the legislative law, in relation to per diems of legislative members; and making an appro- priation therefor THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. The public authorities law is amended by adding a new section 1680-r to read as follows: S 1680-R. LEGISLATIVE DORMITORY FACILITY. 1. THE AUTHORITY IS AUTHOR- IZED TO ENTER INTO AGREEMENTS RELATING TO, AMONG OTHER THINGS, THE ACQUISITION OF PROPERTY OR INTERESTS THEREIN, THE CONSTRUCTION, RECON- STRUCTION, REHABILITATION, IMPROVEMENT, EQUIPPING AND FURNISHING OF A DORMITORY FACILITY IN ALBANY, NEW YORK FOR USE BY MEMBERS OF THE LEGIS- LATURE WHEN IN PERFORMANCE OF THEIR OFFICIAL DUTIES. 2. THE AUTHORITY SHALL OPERATE AND MAINTAIN THE DORMITORY FACILITY APPROVED PURSUANT TO THIS SECTION. S 2. Subdivision 2 of section 5 of the legislative law, as amended by section 1 of part M-1 of chapter 407 of the laws of 1999, is amended to read as follows: 2. Each member of the legislature shall receive [payment of actual and necessary transportation expenses and] a per diem equivalent to the most recent federal per diem rates published by the General Services Adminis- tration and set forth in 41 CFR (Code of Federal Regulations) Part 301, App. A, while in travel status in the performance of his or her duties; and such other reasonable expenses as may be necessary for the perform- ance of the member's responsibilities as determined by the temporary president of the senate or speaker of the assembly for their respective houses. The per diem allowances, including partial per diem allowances, shall be made pursuant to regulations promulgated by the temporary pres-
ident of the senate and the speaker of the assembly for their respective houses, on audit and warrant of the comptroller on vouchers approved by the temporary president of the senate or his or her designee and the speaker of the assembly or his or her designee for their respective houses. S 3. The sum of nine million dollars ($9,000,000), or so much thereof as may be necessary, is hereby appropriated to the dormitory authority out of any moneys in the state treasury in the general fund to the cred- it of the state purposes account, not otherwise appropriated, and made immediately available, for the purpose of carrying out the provisions of this act. Such moneys shall be payable on the audit and warrant of the comptroller on vouchers certified or approved by the dormitory authori- ty. S 4. This act shall take effect immediately; provided, however, that section two of this act shall take effect upon the date of occupancy of the legislative dormitory facility by members of the legislature; provided, further, that the dormitory authority shall notify the legis- lative bill drafting commission upon the occurrence of the enactment of the legislation provided for in sections one and two of this act in order that the commission may maintain an accurate and timely effective data base of the official text of the laws of the state of New York in furtherance of effectuating the provisions of section 44 of the legisla- tive law and section 70-b of the public officers law.

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