ALBANY, N.Y. (CBSNewYork/AP) — Democrats in the New York state Senate want to put a tight limit on legislative moonlighting to reduce corruption in Albany.

Under the proposal announced Monday, lawmakers could make about $12,000, or 15 percent of their base salary of $79,500, in outside income. The limit is similar to one imposed on Congress.

Senate Democratic Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins said outside income restrictions would ensure lawmakers serve constituents and not private employers.

Democrats are also proposing stricter income disclosure rules, tighter campaign finance limits and a ban on using campaign funds for personal expenses and legal defense.

Ethics reform has become a priority following the arrest of former Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver on corruption charges. The Manhattan Democrat resigned as speaker and says he expects to be exonerated.

“All of our names, whether we’ve done anything or not, have frankly been sullied by a lot of what’s gone on here over the past few years,” Stewart-Cousins told WCBS 880’s Alex Silverman. “And so I think most of us want to establish, for our constituents and for ourselves, that we’re good people.”

When asked if limiting outside income might encourage lawmakers to be paid under the table, Stewart-Cousins said: “I guess you can always reach the conclusion someone would want to reach in any circumstance. I think by putting a limit on it, it’s really, really clear. Right now, there isn’t a limit. There are no boundaries.”

(TM and © Copyright 2015 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2015 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)


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