Bill S5399-2013

Restricts the employment of relatives by members of the legislature

Restricts the employment of relatives by members of the legislature.

Details

Actions

  • Jan 8, 2014: REFERRED TO INVESTIGATIONS AND GOVERNMENT OPERATIONS
  • May 16, 2013: REFERRED TO INVESTIGATIONS AND GOVERNMENT OPERATIONS

Memo

BILL NUMBER:S5399

TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the legislative law, in relation to restricting the employment of relatives by members of the legislature

PURPOSE: Restrict the employment of relatives by members of the Legislature

SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS:

Section One of the bill creates a new section, 81, in the legislative law to state a member of the legislature may not employ for legislative business the member's own relative, or the relative of another member from the same legislative district, using public funds over which the member has direct control.

The provision of this section shall not apply to a member of the legislature who has a physical impairment that necessitates the employment of a particular relative and discloses the employment to the legislative ethics commission

For the purposes of this section "relative" means: a spouse, parent or stepparent, a sibling or step sibling, child, stepchild, foster child, ward, mother-in-law, father-in-law, son-in-law, daughter-in-law, grandparent or grandchild.

EXISTING LAW: New law

JUSTIFICATION: According to the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL), the technical definition of nepotism is "bestowal of patronage by public officers in appointing others to positions by reason of blood or marital relationship." According to NCSL, "all 50 states have laws that either prohibit the practice or have guidelines to use in conflict-of-interest situations, which may restrict nepotism depending on interpretation of the law." While 24 states explicitly prohibit a legislator from hiring a relative either through statute or by constitution, New York falls in the latter group, with no specific nepotism restrictions in statute. This bill to amend the legislative law in relation to restricting the employment of relatives by members of the legislature would put New York on a par with leading states in addressing the problem of nepotism.

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: New bill

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: None

EFFECTIVE DATE: This act shall take effect on the ninetieth day after it shall become law.


Text

STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 5399 2013-2014 Regular Sessions IN SENATE May 16, 2013 ___________
Introduced by Sen. HOYLMAN -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Investigations and Govern- ment Operations AN ACT to amend the legislative law, in relation to restricting the employment of relatives by members of the legislature THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. The legislative law is amended by adding a new section 81 to read as follows: S 81. RESTRICTIONS ON RELATIVE EMPLOYMENT. 1. AS USED IN THIS SECTION, "RELATIVE" MEANS: A. A SPOUSE; B. A PARENT OR STEPPARENT; C. A SIBLING OR STEP SIBLING; D. A CHILD, STEPCHILD, FOSTER CHILD, OR WARD; E. A MOTHER-IN-LAW OR FATHER-IN-LAW; F. A SON-IN-LAW OR DAUGHTER-IN-LAW; G. A GRANDPARENT; OR H. A GRANDCHILD. 2. EXCEPT AS PROVIDED IN SUBDIVISION THREE OF THIS SECTION, A MEMBER OF THE LEGISLATURE MAY NOT EMPLOY FOR LEGISLATIVE BUSINESS THE MEMBER'S OWN RELATIVE, OR THE RELATIVE OF ANOTHER MEMBER FROM THE SAME LEGISLA- TIVE DISTRICT, USING PUBLIC FUNDS OVER WHICH THE MEMBER HAS DIRECT CONTROL. 3. THE PROVISIONS OF THIS SECTION SHALL NOT APPLY TO A MEMBER OF THE LEGISLATURE WHO: A. HAS A PHYSICAL IMPAIRMENT THAT NECESSITATES THE EMPLOYMENT OF A PARTICULAR RELATIVE; AND B. DISCLOSES THE EMPLOYMENT TO THE LEGISLATIVE ETHICS COMMISSION. S 2. This act shall take effect on the ninetieth day after it shall have become a law.

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