A Member Of The

Transparency, Accountability, Credibility


First Summonses and Citations Issued
Legislators Named for Improving or Diminishing
Representative Democracy

For immediate release:  February 1, 2001
Contact: Ken White, 617-426-9600 / 617-513-9546

BOSTON -- The Coalition for Legislative Reform, acting as "traffic cops" on Beacon Hill, today awarded citations and issued summonses to Massachusetts legislators for their actions in the opening week of the 2001-2002 session. Already the Legislature has had a major traffic incident and what appears to be a damaging hit-and-run.

First, most members of the House shied away from reform and went along with abolishing term limits for the Speaker of the House. For opposing this anti-democratic measure, 39 representatives will receive certificates of approval. All of the state's Republican representatives (Brown, Cleven, Coppola, Cresta, deMacedo, Frost, George, Gomes, Hahn, Hargraves, Hill, Hillman, Jones, Kelly, Lepper, Locke, LoScocco, Marini, Peterson, Poirier, Polito, Pope, Rogeness, and Tuttle) and 15 Democratic representatives (Balser, Demakis, Dionovan, Finegold, Jehlen, Khan, Marzilli, McGee, Paulsen, Provost, Rushing, Slattery, Smizik, Story, and Travis) will be recognized with "approval" citations.

The sponsors of term-limit abolition, and those who spoke for it on the floor (Representatives Atkins, Barrios, Candaras, Dempsey, Falzone, Festa, Flynn, (Thomas) Golden, Koutoujian, Linsky, Naughton, Knuuttila, Parente, and St. Fleur will be issued summonses for "leaving the scene of accountability."

Special recognition will be given to Representative Douglas Petersen for "taking the high road" by refusing to turn his back on the 67 percent of voters who approved the Clean Elections Law and apparently losing his committee chairmanship as a result. Secretary of Administration & Finance Steven Crosby will also be recognized for initiating the administration's commitment to reducing the number and scope of so-called "outside sections" to the budget. On the negative side, Rep. Gale Candaras will be cited for leading the charge to overturn term limits, and for asserting that legislators "are not potted plants" and "[Speaker Finneran] being a lame duck makes Wall Street unhappy."

The Coalition for Legislative Reform, representing public interest groups from across the political spectrum, works to preserve representative democracy. Through education and lobbying, we try to revive legislative accountability and help break the vicious cycle of voter disengagement and diminished legislative credibility. The Coalition for Legislative Reform includes: American Jewish Congress, Citizens for Limited Taxation, Common Cause Massachusetts, CPPAX, Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgendered Alliance, League of Women Voters of Massachusetts, Massachusetts Audubon, MassPIRG, and NOW.

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