Assemblyman Bob Oaks (R,C-Macedon) today spoke out against the Assembly Majority’s decision to block legislation that would provide greater oversight of undesignated lump-sum budget appropriations, bringing much-needed transparency to a broken and secretive process.
“Billions of tax dollars are spent year after year without any oversight on where specifically these hard-earned dollars are going and what taxpayers can expect from their investment. Too many existing economic development reporting requirements are often ignored or submitted late, and New Yorkers are fed up with reading about misuse and corruption in the news,” said Oaks. “It is a disgrace that after passing another budget in the middle of the night, the Assembly has returned to Albany to block this necessary reform.”
Oaks is the sponsor of the reform legislation, A.5657, that would protect taxpayer dollars invested in economic development through the creation of an advisory committee to review every lump-sum budget appropriation, require greater transparency throughout the process and institute penalties, including withholding the governor’s own salary should his appointees fail to comply. Furthermore, and perhaps most newsworthy given the corruption trial of some of the governor’s closest aides, the legislation would prohibit campaign contributions from those receiving taxpayer funded lump sums.