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Citizens Union

Melissa Mark-Viverito (Credit: Getty Images)

New York City Council Reforms Rules For Discretionary Spending

New York City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito has voluntarily given up her authority to decide how a large chunk of the council’s discretionary funding is distributed.

04/29/2014

New York City Hall (file/credit: Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

Govt Watchdog: City Council ‘Broke A Promise’ By Voting To Dole Out Stipends

In its first meeting, the new council approved a long list of extra pay to be doled out to members. The speaker gets $25,000 and the majority leader $20,000, while ten members get $15,000 apiece. Thirty four other members get $8,000 each.

01/23/2014

Ballots go through voting machine (file/credit: Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

Local Officials Rally For ‘Better, Smarter, Fairer’ Instant Runoff Voting

Elected officials pointed to the $13 million price tag to hold Tuesday’s public advocate runoff election that saw very low voter turnout as a reason to change the current procedure.

10/02/2013

New York State Capitol in Albany (file / credit: Chris Hondros/Getty Images)

Critics: N.Y. State Lawmakers Have Quietly Revived Unpopular Taxes To Build Budget

Good-government groups slammed the New York State Legislature on Wednesday for what one senator called “vampire voting” — dead-of-night votes to revive taxes that were supposed to die — to build much of the new $135 billion budget.

03/27/2013