ALBANY - Gov. Andrew Cuomo has unveiled a new series of proposals aimed at rooting out public corruption.
The governor announced plans to set up an independent enforcement unit at the state Board of Elections that would investigate potential violations of election laws. He also wants to expand voter choice and open political primaries to more candidates.
The latest reforms would expand on Cuomo's already proposed Public Trust Act, which would make it a misdemeanor offense not to report bribery among political colleagues. There would also be stiffer penalties for misuse of taxpayer dollars, and calls for a lifetime ban from government leadership to anyone convicted of public corruption felonies.
City politicians have taken the spotlight in recent weeks, including Bronx Assemblyman Eric Stevenson, who was arrested for alleged bribery. Former Bronx Republican Party Chairman Joseph Savino also resigned after being accused of accepting bribes to help state Sen. Malcolm Smith get the GOP bid in the mayoral race.