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Preliminary Report FINAL

Preliminary Report FINAL

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10/28/2011

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Preliminary Staff Report andRecommendations to theChair of the 2010 CharterRevision Commission
July 9, 2010
New York City Charter Revision Commission2 Lafayette Street, 14
th
FloorNew York, N.Y. 10007
 
 
HAIRatthew GoldsteinVICE-CHAIRohn H. BanksECRETARYAngela Mariana FreyreEMBERSAnthony Perez CassinoBetty Y. ChenDavid ChenHope CohenAnthony W. Crowelltephen J. FialaErnest HartRev. Joseph M. McShane, S.J.Kenneth M. MoltnerKatheryn Pattersonarlo A. ScissuraBishop Mitchell G. TaylorEXECUTIVE DIRECTORLorna B. Goodman
July 9, 2010Dear Chairman Goldstein:As you requested in June, the staff has prepared a preliminaryreport
 
to serve as the basis for further discussion and action bythe commission.The contents reflect discussions with commissioners,information elicited at the public hearings and expert issueforums, and at meetings with representatives of goodgovernment organizations and concerned citizens. We haveexamined the social science and other literature on the issuesdiscussed in the report and conducted legal research inconjunction with the New York City Corporation Counsel’sOffice, which serves as formal legal adviser to the commission.The most difficult part of writing this report has been choosingfrom among the many creative and meritorious ideas put forththose the commission has the time and resources to prepare forthe ballot in November. With that in mind, the reportdiscusses, first, those proposals which staff believes could beready by November, and, in Part V, those proposals whichneed further study or are not within the commission’s authorityto propose, or for other reasons should be reserved for thefuture.As you have said from the start, this is an iterative process.We expect that some of the staff’s recommendations will passthe test of the summer’s debate and others may be left on thetable for future action. The commissioners may want as well toadd proposals for discussion or for inclusion on the ballot. Weview this report as the first step in an exciting discussion that is just beginning.The staff looks forward to working with you and the othercommission members to refine and distill the very best ideas topresent to the voters.Yours truly,Lorna Goodman
 
 
CONTENTS
About the Commission
................................................................................. 1
Introduction to Proposals
........................................................................... 14
Part I – Term Limits
................................................................................... 17
Part II – Increasing Voter Participation
.................................................. 28A. Introducing Instant Runoff Voting ...................................................... 28B. Decreasing the Number of Petition Signatures Necessary to Appear onthe Ballot ............................................................................................. 34C. Consolidating the Voter Assistance Commission and the CampaignFinance Board ..................................................................................... 37
Part III – Public Integrity
.......................................................................... 42A. Disclosure of Independent Campaign Contributions .......................... 43B. Amendments to Chapter 68, Conflicts of Interest ............................... 47
Part IV – Efficiencies in Government
....................................................... 50A. Consolidation of Administrative Tribunals ......................................... 50B. Citywide Review of Reporting Requirements and Advisory Bodies . 53
Part V – Other Issues
.................................................................................. 58A. Non-partisan (“Top Two”) Elections .................................................. 58B. Changes in Registration and Election Procedure ................................ 62C. Streamlining the Charter ..................................................................... 64D. Budget Issues ....................................................................................... 64E. Issues Regarding Government Structure ............................................. 65F. Land Use Issues ................................................................................... 66

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