The Poughkeepsie Journal
October 8, 2013
As an Albany outsider, I have continuously stated that the public’s trust must be earned. That is why I was the first state legislator to publicly support the Moreland Commission’s request for state lawmakers to disclose information relating to their clients outside of the legislature despite the majority of both houses’ refusal to do so.
The Moreland Commission was recently formed to root out corruption because the status quo in the legislature has failed to police itself.
Since arriving at the capitol as a new state senator, I have seen firsthand the entrenched powers’ and special interests’ resistance to change. This has inspired me to partner with newly elected officials on all three sides of the aisle to fight for good government reform.
I believe that when one is elected to public office, legislators should to be fully transparent and committed to those they serve.
I am frustrated that we even have to discuss this issue, rather than giving our full attention to creating jobs, reducing the cost of living, bringing businesses to New York and delivering mandate relief to our counties and municipalities.
The current law allows New York state legislators to have clients and to earn an outside income, and I understand this. However, we accepted this job of representing the people of our districts and their interests should come ahead of those of clients.
Let the Moreland Commission do its job. Releasing client information is common sense and it will help restore the public’s trust. I remain committed to fighting for good government and transparency so that the people’s legislature is working for them.
Terry Gipson, D-Rhinebeck, is a New York state senator representing the 41st District, which covers most of Dutchess and part of Putnam counties.