June 17, 2013

State Senate Co-President Jeff Klein State Senator David Carlucci State Senator Diane Savino State Senator David Valesky Legislative Office Building Albany, NY 12247

Dear Members of the Independent Democratic Conference: At the formation of your coalition government in the New York State Senate, we trusted in your public promises to "move a progressive agenda that otherwise might be stalled in Albany."* Time is running out. With only a few days left in this year's legislative session, we are waiting for you to make good on those promises. We write to ask for a vote on the following critically important pieces of legislation: 1) Comprehensive campaign finance reform with public funding at its core, to address corruption and the undue influence of wealthy donors in our political process. 2) The Women's Equality Agenda, to break down barriers that perpetuate discrimination and inequality based on gender. 3) The New York DREAM Act, to provide critical financial support enabling undocumented students access to higher education opportunities. 4) Marijuana decriminalization legislation, to decriminalize possession of small amounts of marijuana, and put an end to racially biased "stop and frisk" practices and illegal marijuana arrests.

*

IDC Leader, Senator Jeffrey Klein: http://statepolitics.lohudblogs.com/2012/12/04/klein-pledgesprogressive-agenda-says-idc-welcomes-to-new-members/

5) GENDA, to ensure full civil rights and reduce discrimination against transgender New Yorkers and all whose gender expression is unfairly targeted 6) Moratorium on Hydrofracking, to ensure clean water, clean air and a safe environment for all New Yorkers that protects our health. Whether or not every bill has the votes to pass, each deserves a vote, and voters deserve to know where their representatives stand. A failure on the part of leadership to bring these bills to the floor for a vote will provide voters with a clear indication of where the IDC stands. Sincerely, Karen Scharff, Citizen Action of New York Dan Cantor, Working Families Party Michael Waldman, Brennan Center for Justice at NYU School of Law Susan Lerner, Common Cause/NY Andrea Miller, NARAL Pro-Choice New York Tracey Brooks, Family Planning Advocates Sonia Ossorio, National Organization for Women, New York City Christine Sadowski, YWCA Orange County Razeen Zaman, New York State Youth Leadership Council Chung-Wha Hong, New York Immigration Coalition Javier Valdes, Make the Road New York Hazel Dukes, President, NAACP New York State Conference Marvin Bing, Northeast Regional Director, National NAACP terri smith-caronia, Housing Works Transgender Advocates of the Capital Region Julia Walsh, Frack Action Roger Downs, Sierra Club

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