Legislative Update

Volume CV, No. 4April, 2005

Heather Beaudoin


The New York State AFL-CIO announced its 2005 legislative agenda which included such items as job creation efforts, healthcare and affordable housing.

The recommendations proposed harnessing the engine of public procurement to create good jobs that reenergize the tax base; creating a thorough approach to pharmaceutical procurement designed to reduce cost to the state, local governments and our membership; using all means possible to end government support and participation in off shoring New York jobs; and a well-funded program of affordable housing and home ownership to alleviate the problem our younger members encounter in securing adequate, affordable convenient housing.

The governor vetoed 319 items of legislation in 2004, of which approximately 250 were labor issues. Many of the items vetoed were budget appropriations that directly impact labor. Among the remainder of the bills vetoed were key agenda items of labor affiliates. Therefore, an additional 2005 agenda item for the state AFL-CIO is the re-passage and signing into law all of the items that labor supported the passage of in 2004.


Local 802 has joined other labor unions in support of Int. 564 which would amend the administrative code of the city of New York in relation to the definition of campaign contribution under the Campaign Finance Law.

The Campaign Finance Board’s (CFB) recent ruling made significant changes that severely limited a labor organizations ability to contribute to candidates in the city campaign finance program.

“The recent changes made by the CFB to the rules governing campaign contributions will unilaterally silence the voices of independent local unions that are involved in the political process in New York City. This CFB ruling is just another attempt to whittle down the rights of working men and women,” said Local 802 president David Lennon.

Introduced by Councilmembers Comrie and DeBlasio, this proposed legislation clarifies the campaign finance law, in a way consistent with its intent, by specifying how the CFB will determine whether two labor organizations constitute a single source for the purposes of campaign contribution limits.

If two labor organizations make contributions from different accounts, maintain separate accounts with different signatories, do not share a majority of members of their governing boards, and do not share a majority of the officers of their governing boards, then they are separate for the purposes of contribution limits.