Vote NO on proposition number 1: Shall there be a Constitutional Convention?
The New York State Conservative Party has long opposed the idea of holding a Constitutional Convention. The last Constitutional Convention was held in 1967. State Conservative Party Chairman Michael R. Long was a participant. In Chairman Long’s opinion, “the Convention was a colossal waste of taxpayers’ money.” If one were held today, State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli conservatively estimates that it would cost taxpayers $50 Million. This would be money well spent, if it could bring the change our state so desperately needs, but the political reality is that the Constitutional Convention would ultimately be controlled by the same liberal interests that already have a stranglehold on the existing legislative process.
The fact that two additional proposals are on the ballot only reinforces the Party’s position that there is a process in place that allows the State Constitution to be amended, as needed, without the added cost of holding a Constitutional Convention.
Vote YES on proposition number 2: Allows for the complete or partial forfeiture of a public officer's pension if he or she is convicted of a certain type of felony that has a direct and actual relationship to the performance of the public officer's existing duties.
The New York Constitution provides that the benefits of a public pension or retirement system cannot be reduced or impaired. The purpose of the proposed amendment is to allow a court to reduce or revoke the public pension of a public officer who is convicted of a felony that has a direct and actual relationship to the performance of the public officer's existing duties. A Court could consider many factors, including undue hardship to the family and the seriousness of the crime. If approved, the Legislature would enact law that puts the proposal into effect. All public officials, elected and appointed, would be subject to the new law (including legislative, executive, or judicial employees who directly assist in the formulation of legislation, rules, regulations, policy, or judicial decision making and who are designated by law as a policymaker). The proposal would only apply to felony crimes committed after January 1, 2018.
Vote YES on proposition number 3: The proposed amendment will create a land account adding up to 250 acres of forest preserve land eligible for use by towns, villages, and counties that have no viable alternative to using forest preserve land to address specific public health and safety concerns.
New York State's Constitution protects the State's forest preserve as wild forest land and generally prohibits the lease, sale, exchange, or taking of any forest preserve land. The Conservative Party has long opposed the state arbitrarily taking land to increase acreage in a forest preserve, however, there are times when such action is necessary. Proposal number 3, creates a land account of up to 250 acres of forest preserve land, that a town, village, or county can apply to the land account if it has no viable alternative to using forest preserve land for specified health and safety purposes. These purposes could include making dangerous roads safer or addressing other public safety concerns, such as bridge repairs. It could also make it possible for rural areas to gain access to needed utility lines and safer bike paths.