Gov. Cuomo Endorses Police Accountability with Pocket Veto
NEW YORK, NY. - In response to Governor Cuomo’s pocket veto of a bill that would have undermined the ability of local government officials across New York State to discipline police officers engaged in misconduct, the New York Civil Liberties Union issued the following statement, attributable to Executive Director Donna Lieberman:
“With this pocket veto, Governor Cuomo has endorsed the basic rights and liberties of all New Yorkers. Police have unique authority as they perform their job – the power to arrest, jail and use force. Their job responsibilities impact – and as the tragic death of Eric Garner reminds us, can even destroy – the lives of others. This power is simply too great to open up to the political pressures of local negotiations, which can all too readily get in the way of a fair process for officers and prevent municipalities from responding effectively to police misconduct and abuse.”
A pocket veto occurs when the governor opts not to sign a bill within the time period he must take action on it for it to become a law, thus effectively vetoing the bill.
In July, the NYCLU, NAACP New York State Conference, 1199 SEIU, the National Action Network and Communities United for Police Reform sent a letter to the governor urging him to veto S7801/A9853. That letter is available at http://www.nyclu.org/files/releases/PoliceDisciplineLettertoCuomo.pdf
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The New York Civil Liberties Union (NYCLU) is one of the nation's foremost defenders of civil liberties and civil rights.