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    Occupy Wall Street: What Just Happened? eBook on Amazon

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    Reflections on Occupy Wall Street, with photos, fun, and good wishes for the future. eBook, Occupy Wall Street: What Just Happened? (Only $.99 !) In the eBook, the Occupy movement is explored through original reporting, photographs, cartoons, poetry, essays, and reviews.The collection of essays and blog posts records the unfolding of Occupy into the culture from September 2011 to the present.  Authors Kimberly Wilder and Ian Wilder were early supporters of Occupy, using their internet platforms to communicate the changes being created by the American Autumn.

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Energy Industry Influence in Albany: It’s Electric!

On Monday, as New York’s lawmakers began to scrutinize the failures that led to recent power outages in Western Queens and on Staten Island, Common Cause/NY released an analysis of the energy industry’s political spending.

Check out our new report to see what energy companies dole out for lobbying and campaign contributions in Albany.

Two weeks ago, 100,000 Queens residents were plunged into a 10-day blackout. This week the New York City Council and the New York State Assembly are holding hearings to determine what went wrong. And, with the current heat wave making New York a tropical destination, many observers have raised concerns about the possibility of further large-scale blackouts.

Common Cause/NY research has found that triple digit heat is nothing compared to the eight digits that the energy industry has shelled out in political spending in New York State. The industry has spent approximately $10.7 million dollars on lobbying expenses and campaign contributions in New York since 2003. Unsurprisingly, the biggest individual recipient of industry contributions was Governor Pataki, the architect of the state’s more than decade-long policy of deregulation of the industry.

Click here to see a list of what particular companies gave and to whom.

While energy companies have spent big to become political heavyweights in Albany, state oversight of energy companies and utilities has been shockingly lax. Our report highlights the fact that the Public Service Commission, the state agency that is supposed to ensure that companies are providing New Yorkers with affordable and reliable energy, is stacked with political cronies and energy industry insiders.

This report is yet more evidence for the need for campaign finance reform that dramatically lowers campaign contribution limits and reduces the influence of major contributors. As the New York Times said in an editorial this Sunday, “When New York State politicians starts asking for your vote, it’s time to ask for something in return…Will the candidate support the campaign finance package proposed by many good government groups, including the Brennan Center, Citizens Union, Common Cause, the League of Women Voters and the New York Public Interest Research Group? The package would lower the state’s astronomically high campaign contribution limits.”

Our response? Great question!
Thank you for all you do for Common Cause in New York!

Sincerely,


Rachel Leon
CC/NY Executive Director

Support Common Cause/NY:
www.commoncause.org/FixAlbany

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