New York. Worst. Legislature. Ever.

Except for California maybe.  But I don’t live there.  Nope.  Along with millions of other New Yorkers, I have spent the last year marveling at the ineptitude of our state legislature, especially the state senate.

This time a year ago, the country watched as 30 Republican senators aligned themselves with two corrupt Democrats in an effort to gain control. Currently, the legislature cannot come up with a budget.  Heck, they can barely keep state government operating.  I’ll be fair:  having a lame duck governor is not helping the situation either.  What the heck are we paying these folks for?  Make that overpaying.

Now before I’m accused of being a whiner, let me offer some solutions:

  1. New Yorkers should vote out any legislator who has served for more than three terms.  Vote in a citizen legislator instead.  (My state senator has served almost 34 years!)
  2. 10% pay cut on the base pay of every legislator.
  3. It’s a part-time job.  No health care coverage.  No pension.  They can pay for their own health care.  They can invest in their own 401K’s, IRA’s, or whatever.
  4. No extra pay for committee service or leadership positions. Legislators are public servants.  They should serve on committees because of a desire to serve, not a desire for more compensation.
  5. Each legislator gets the same amount of money to pay for staffers. A minimal amount.  We can come up with a number.
  6. No more per diem for travel.  Each legislator gets a minimal flat-rate amount for travel expense based on the geographic distance between their district and Albany.  Need to save on travel expenses?  Take a bus.  Stay at a cheap hotel.  Pack a lunch.
  7. No more ethics reform arguments.  Every dime of income of  legislators and their spouses should be reported annually.  Not fair? Maybe, but running for office is a choice.
  8. When (if) New York gets to the point where the legislature passes huge tax cuts, then we can talk about pay increases.  Not until then.

What do you call that?  I think it’s a good start.  I realize that it’s not entirely realistic, but it could bring forth some fruitful discussion.  Let me know what you think.  More importantly, let your legislators know.

I love the Empire State.  I’m just not so wild about its legislature.  And don’t even get me started about the ugliest license plates ever created.

We’re making New Jersey look good.

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  1. springtimesoul

     /  June 16, 2010

    Thanks NY, for making NJ look good We need all the help we can get.

    • Our pleasure. What else can we do for you? Raise taxes? Another gubernatorial scandal? A legislative ban on common sense?

  2. Mary Christensen

     /  June 16, 2010

    I’d say your blog is definitely more productive than a temper tantrum. However, roller coasting is probably better on your blood pressure.

    • Roller coasting is great for my blood pressure. My blogging has caused me to cut down on yelling at the politicians on TV. Now I just grumble about them under my breath while I blog. That likely helps my blood pressure, too.

  1. The Gipper Then and Now |

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