ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — This week on Empire State Weekly, a New York State Supreme Court Judge has ruled the State Ethics Commission unconstitutional. The ruling puts the future of the Commission in question.
Blair Horner, the executive director of the New York Public Interest Research Group, explained the long history of issues the state has had with ethics groups. He pointed out that the prior ethics commission (the Joint Commission on Public Ethics or JCOPE) faced criticism for allegedly being too close to the administration of Governor Andrew Cuomo. In contrast, the current commission has been ruled unconstitutional because it is too independent.
“The tension always is that they’re afraid. The governor, and the legislative leaders and everyone else is afraid that if they create an entity that’s too independent, it creates real problems for them. And so far, for the past decades that I’ve been working on this, they’re much more willing to keep tinkering around the edges than actually just dealing with it and creating a truly independent entity, and that’s what New Yorkers deserve.” said Horner.
Also this week, as students head back to school, New York officials are recommending similar precautions to help keep everyone safe from the coronavirus this year. Doctor Jeena Madden, with Saint Peter’s Health Partners, explained that the Hochul Administration’s push for vaccination has multiple public health benefits.
“Again, the bottom line with a lot of these vaccines is we wanna keep people out of the hospital and we wanna keep them alive. I mean, that’s really the bottom line, as well as reduce the severity of the disease. The new COVID vaccine, which should be coming out in September or October, is a great way to do that.” said Madden.
To see these interviews and more, here is a list of how you can watch Empire State Weekly in your area of New York: