Problems with the legislative process

News

You may have heard a lot about criminal justice reform, especially the elimination of cash bail for a variety of offenses. But, now there is push back on that legislation.

How did such dramatic changes get enacted without being presented through the
regular legislative process?

The answer is that it was passed in last year’s state budget. Governor Andrew Cuomo has
proposed using such route to even legalize marijuana in New York State.

Assemblywoman Marianne Buttenschon explains that, “Through the budget bill there’s a format where under the state constitution, article 7 affords opportunity for legislation to be placed in the bill to identify different projects or different needs.”

Going back to bail reform, it was was placed within the school budget. Is this a proper way to run a government?

“Policy within a budget bill is something that we highly criticize because it’s not an important aspect of doing things. And we’re talking about article 7 which, within the state constitution states, there needs to be revenue streams for funding or budget policies that’s put forward. I think this doesn’t mesh perfectly.” —Buttenschon

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