• Ideally, a governmental budget is created with full public transparency. But nine of the ten bills that make up this year’s Budget were passed by the Legislature soon after final amendments were added and bills were printed, using gubernatorial “messages of necessity” that bypass the three-day waiting period normally required by the State Constitution. The Legislature’s budget conference committee process was incomplete again this year. In many ways, transparency was sorely lacking.
–Thomas DiNapoli, NY State Comptroller http://www.osc.state.ny.us/reports/budget/2016/2016_17_enacted_budget_report.pdf
• “Three days of debate, everyone has an opinion, it’s entirely transparent, we never reach resolution,” Cuomo said. “I get 100 percent for transparency. I get zero for results.” Governor Andrew Cuomo, Long Island Press, December 12, 2011
• Governor Andrew Cuomo has used the Message of Necessity three times just to pass a budget.
• The 1938 Convention Committee was not naive and even noted, “it is the hope of the members of the committee that if the Governor is required to certify facts which in his opinion constitute an emergency, it will not fall into a pro forma signing of a printed message…” (Maybee v. State of N.Y., 828 NE 2d 975 (N.Y. Ct. of Appeals 2005) citing 2 Revised Rec, 1938 NY Constitutional Convention, at 1435.) As history would show, not even the 1938 amendment to this provision of the Constitution could stop the abuse by a Governor of the message of necessity.
• Judicial challenges have failed to reform the centuries-old practice of abusing the Message of Necessity. In 2005 and before that in 1973, the New York State Court of Appeals, the highest state court, has held that “the sufficiency of the facts stated by the Governor in a certificate of necessity is not subject to judicial review” going as far as to affirm that “the sufficiency of the ‘facts’ stated by the Governor in a message of necessity ‘is unassailable’” (emphasis added).(Maybee v. State of N.Y., 828 NE 2d 975 (N.Y. Ct. of Appeals 2005))