Government Relations Newsletter— Vol. 2
Welcome to NYSBA’s Government Relations Newsletter. We hope this will help keep our members informed about what is happening in the legislative arena and learn about NYSBA’s advocacy on policies that matter to our Association.
What’s happening in the State Capitol:
February flew by with just three short weeks of legislative sessions. Lawmakers held hearings to gather additional information on the Governor’s budget proposals and then left for the February break. Although there was not a formal session in the final week of the month, legislative leaders and staff were undoubtedly pulling together recommendations for the Senate and Assembly one-house budgets. Those budgets will make their debut mid-March.
NYSBA Issues on the Move:
In the past month, the Department of Government Relations has been lobbying key stakeholders in the Legislature and Governor’s office on behalf of our membership. The following notable bills have seen legislative movement in the last month.
- The Repeal of Judiciary Law 470 (S.700/A.5895):
Legislation supported by the Association removing statutory requirements to maintain a physical office in New York State was passed by the Senate for the second consecutive year. The bill is in the Assembly Judiciary Committee. See NYSBA’s Support Flyer
- Raising the Assigned Counsel Rates (S.3527a/A6013a):
Legislation raising the assigned counsel rates was reported from Local Government committee in the Senate. This is the first time the bill has been reported from its originating committee, and signals support from Senate leadership to raise the rates as they approach budget negotiations. The bill is now in the Finance committee in the Senate and the Ways and Means committee in the Assembly.
- Mandatory Training for Board of Ethics Members (S.7550/A.9120):
A legislative proposal drafted by NYSBA’s Local and State Government Law Section was introduced in both houses and advanced to third reading in the Senate. See NYSBA’s Support Memo.
- Constitutional Amendment to Protect Mental Health (S.3995/ A.5238):
A resolution originating from NYSBA’s Committee on the New York State Constitution was approved by the Assembly this month. The resolution would amend the New York State Constitution to provide protections and services for mental health consistent with physical health.
President T. Andrew Brown met with several legislators and their staffers this month to discuss the legislative priorities of the Association and encourage policy makers to use NYSBA’s subject matter experts when drafting legislation. In response to this offer, the Department of Government Relations has already received requests for comments on legislation and is working with the relevant sections and committees to advise the legislature.
Sections and Committees are encouraged to use their expertise and get involved in the legislative process. Please see NYSBA’s Government Relations website for existing legislative memos and advocacy content.
Questions about the specific legislation or the legislative process generally? Please contact our Government Relations Team with questions or concerns.
Department of Government Relations Team:
- Hilary Jochmans, Policy Director: [email protected]
- Cheyenne Burke, Esq., Associate Director of Government Relations:[email protected]