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  Northeast Assembly Thread (search mode)
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Author Topic: Northeast Assembly Thread  (Read 329296 times)
cinyc
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« Reply #125 on: November 20, 2009, 05:01:55 pm »

Aye
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cinyc
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« Reply #126 on: November 20, 2009, 07:11:48 pm »

Winston Disraeli replaced Rocky. 

I don't think Hamilton has even been removed from the Assembly yet.  He's made no formal resignation and hasn't been convicted of a crime - or even brought up on any charges, yet.  Governor Andrew CT certainly hasn't named any replacement on his office thread.
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cinyc
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« Reply #127 on: November 21, 2009, 08:44:27 pm »
« Edited: November 21, 2009, 09:26:30 pm by cinyc »

Notice from the president:

Until the matter of whether or not Hamilton is still a member of Atlasia, all legislation proposed by Rep. Hamilton will not be considered.

That's fine.  Other members might want to look at the queue to see if they want to sponsor any of Hamilton's bills.

Edited to add: As I see it, Mr. Moderate's Cape Wind bill should be next, followed by Dr. Cynic's Green Jobs initiative.  Everything else is Hamilton's, so there should be time to debate a few other bills before the next election.  I've added a revised Amending Procedure Amendment to the queue tonight - which will basically put proposed amendments to a public vote on the third Friday of the month.
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cinyc
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« Reply #128 on: November 21, 2009, 11:27:56 pm »

Hamilton is not benned. His name still shows up on the Members List.

Well, if he doesn't vote on the next bill, he will be at risk of expelled from the legislature.  Do we need to have some sort of proceedings for that?

Rep. Doctor Cynic - I don't think we're voting on Cape Wind yet.  Rep. Mr. Moderate should have the floor to explain his bill.
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cinyc
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« Reply #129 on: November 22, 2009, 03:34:46 pm »

Nay. Wind power is ineffective and not cost-worthy.

Yeah, why speding money to avoid the destruction of the planet we are living in ? Who the hell cares ?

No, don't put words in my mouth. I support solar, hydro-electric and nuclear power.

I agree that wind power is not cost effective and only works when the wind blows.  But the Northeast government isn't building Cape Wind - a private company is.  If a private company wants to build a wind farm and thinks they can turn a profit, why shouldn't we support it?
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cinyc
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« Reply #130 on: November 24, 2009, 01:29:38 am »

Aye
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cinyc
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« Reply #131 on: November 25, 2009, 07:27:10 pm »

What's a green job?  What's a non-green job?  How does a government create green jobs?  And how much will this cost?
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cinyc
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« Reply #132 on: November 26, 2009, 11:24:04 pm »

As long as this applies to public sector jobs only, I don't see the problem.

The problem is it's not clear exactly what jobs the law applies to - and our financial commitment is fairly open-ended.  I can't support this in its current form - and wouldn't know where to start to markup any amendments.
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cinyc
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« Reply #133 on: November 27, 2009, 05:49:49 pm »

Nay
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cinyc
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« Reply #134 on: November 28, 2009, 08:45:31 pm »

Rep Antonio V -  This was a first cut that only included changes on which we were likely to agree.  I was actually going to throw open the percent of the public vote required for ratification issue (and the question of how often we should be putting amendment votes to the public) for discussion.

Do we really want to totally scrap the minimum public participation requirement?  I agree that a successful vote of a majority may be difficult to reach in many cases - especially if, as in recent federal amendments, amendment proponents don't actively campaign for a change.  But should we allow a plurality of voters to change the Constitution - just because citizens weren't around one weekend and didn't vote?  Perhaps we should require a quorum of a majority of voters to vote on a proposed amendment - and 2/3rds of them to pass it.  Or we should extend the voting period to a week to allow more people to get to the polls.

I'm not taking your amendment as friendly - yet.  I'd like to hear other representatives' views on this issue.
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cinyc
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« Reply #135 on: November 30, 2009, 12:11:39 am »

I persist to consider this system as undemocratic, since the partisans of status quo are helpe by people who don't care. The opinion of people who don't care shouldn't be considered.
Anyways, I accept to propose this one as a compromise, making the treshold more realizable. I'd like you to accept this as friendly. Wink


Amending Procedure Amendment

1. Article VII of the New Northeast Constitution is hereby repealed. Its content shall be replaced by the following:
2. i) Amendments to this constitution shall be proposed by the Legislative Assembly of the Northeast Region.  A proposed Amendment shall be forwarded to be voted upon by the citizens of the Northeast upon:

a) An affirmative vote of two-thirds of voting members Legislative Assembly of the Northeast Region;

b) An affirmative vote of majority of all members of the Legislative Assembly; and

c) Approval of the Governor in the form of his consent.

ii) The Chief Judicial Officer shall open the polling booth for all proposed Amendments approved by the Governor before 12:00:00am EST of the second Friday of a month at 12:00:00am EST on the third Friday of the same month.  The Chief Judicial Officer shall open the polling booth for all proposed Amendments approved by the Governor after 12:00:00am EST of the second Friday of a month at 12:00:00am EST on the third Friday of the following month.  The Chief Judicial Officer shall close the polling booth at 11:59:59pm EST on the following Sunday.  If the date for opening the polling booth coincides with another Northeast election, the Chief Judicial Officer shall include the vote on any proposed Amendments in the polling booth for that election.

iii) Any Amendment proposed by the Legislative Assembly of the Northeast Region shall only become effective upon:

a) An affirmative vote of two-thirds of those citizens of the Northeast Region who vote for or against the proposed Amendment; and

b) An affirmative vote of one third of all citizens of the Northeast Region who are eligible to vote in such election.


I'm willing to accept this as friendly - but would like to hear the opinion of other Reps before proceeding.
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cinyc
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« Reply #136 on: November 30, 2009, 02:27:09 am »

Do you mind if I amend 2c) to say "Approval of the Governor in the form of his signature" - to make it clear that he must affirmatively sign any proposed amendment?  There appears to be some sort of issue about that on the Governor's office thread.
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cinyc
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« Reply #137 on: November 30, 2009, 03:40:29 pm »

This is the bill on the floor, with all friendly amendments (those in red being the most recent amendments to the proposed amendment):

Amending Procedure Amendment

1. Article VII of the New Northeast Constitution is hereby repealed. Its content shall be replaced by the following:
2. i) Amendments to this constitution shall be proposed by the Legislative Assembly of the Northeast Region.  A proposed Amendment shall be forwarded to be voted upon by the citizens of the Northeast upon:

a) An affirmative vote of two-thirds of voting members Legislative Assembly of the Northeast Region;

b) An affirmative vote of majority of all members of the Legislative Assembly; and

c) Approval of the Governor in the form of his signature.

ii) The Chief Judicial Officer shall open the polling booth for all proposed Amendments approved by the Governor before 12:00:00am EST of the second Friday of a month at 12:00:00am EST on the third Friday of the same month.  The Chief Judicial Officer shall open the polling booth for all proposed Amendments approved by the Governor after 12:00:00am EST of the second Friday of a month at 12:00:00am EST on the third Friday of the following month.  The Chief Judicial Officer shall close the polling booth at 11:59:59pm EST on the following Sunday.  If the date for opening the polling booth coincides with another Northeast election, the Chief Judicial Officer shall include the vote on any proposed Amendments in the polling booth for that election.

iii) Any Amendment proposed by the Legislative Assembly of the Northeast Region shall only become effective upon:

a) An affirmative vote of two-thirds of those citizens of the Northeast Region who vote for or against the proposed Amendment; and

b) An affirmative vote of one third of all citizens of the Northeast Region who are eligible to vote in such election.
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cinyc
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« Reply #138 on: November 30, 2009, 03:48:39 pm »

Maybe I just didn't read the bill right the first time.  It initially made it seem like citizens were only involved in a Maine-like people's veto of an amendment once it had already been pushed into law.

Anyway.  I'm okay with this amendment.

The main thing my proposal does is put constitutional amendment votes to the public monthly instead of quarterly, only during gubernatorial election months.  Upon taking into account friendly advice, it also lowers the absolute percentage of Northeast citizens who most vote for an amendment from a majority to 1/3rd and cleans up the language in a few places.

That's it.
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cinyc
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« Reply #139 on: December 01, 2009, 10:05:38 pm »

Aye
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cinyc
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« Reply #140 on: December 01, 2009, 10:13:36 pm »

Nay.

Next time open debate on the bills in the proper order and I might consider them.

Next time don't go running away from the Assembly, making us all think you've been permanently banned when you haven't been.  Then, things will get taken up in the proper order.  When you were supposedly banned, the Lt. Governor made the correct decision to skip over your bills.  Had you posted the truth at that time or PMed the Lt. Governor about your status, they would never had been.  You never responded or posted a notice of absence.
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cinyc
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« Reply #141 on: December 02, 2009, 02:29:43 am »

We have no grounds to remove Rep Hamilton.  He has violated no Northeast law that I know of, and the AG thus far has not prosecuted him for violating any federal law.  He's voted on 1 of the last 3 pieces of legislation, loosely defined.

It's ultimately up to the Northeast voters to decide whether to retain Rep. Hamilton this month.  As it should be.
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cinyc
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« Reply #142 on: December 02, 2009, 10:43:40 pm »

Next bill?  I assume it's one of Rep. Hamilton's now that he's back?
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cinyc
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« Reply #143 on: December 06, 2009, 07:53:33 pm »

Present and abstaining.

I generally support the bill, but don't think people who signed contracts with an interest rate reset deserve a taxpayer bailout.  Those who prudently lived within their means and took out a responsible, fixed-rate mortgage to pay for their house shouldn't be subsidizing those who didn't.
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cinyc
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« Reply #144 on: December 06, 2009, 08:05:40 pm »

Present and abstaining.

I generally support the bill, but don't think people who signed contracts with an interest rate reset deserve a taxpayer bailout.  Those who prudently lived within their means and took out a responsible, fixed-rate mortgage to pay for their house shouldn't be subsidizing those who didn't.

Once they get booted out of their homes they will likely be living in public housing.

Renting private housing, more likely - which is what they were essentially doing when they took out no-money-down, interest-only or teaser rate loans in the first place.
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cinyc
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« Reply #145 on: December 08, 2009, 09:34:46 pm »

The bill is straight forward, we need to protect our natural environment here in the Northeast. I don't really have much to comment on this, but I would like to let the hardcore capitalists know that this is a pro-business bill. If we are going to remain productive, natural resources must be managed at sustainable levels. If we eliminate our forests at the current rate without adequate replenishment, pretty soon we will be a treeless region. How will we capitalize then? The Northeast would lose jobs... We would lose natives species... We would lose our beautiful natural landscape... Is it worth it? If we implement sustainable policies, we will be able to make use of what nature has given us for as long as we dedicate ourselves to responsible policies.

I rise in opposition to this bill, especially with respect to restrictions placed on private land.

It is often said that the Northeast has more trees today than we have ever had before.  While that's likely true, it is of no doubt that the Northeast has more trees today than we had at the beginning of the last century.  This is despite the fact that much of our forests are privately owned, unlike out west.

Or is it BECAUSE of that fact?  Private tree farmers who own the land have every incentive to treat their trees with the utmost of respect.  Overcutting today will directly lead to lower expected profits tomorrow - and a declining company value.

I simply don't know why we need heavy handed regulation of something that's working.  There is no danger of the Northeast becoming a treeless region.  It hasn't been heading in that direction for 100 years.
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cinyc
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« Reply #146 on: December 08, 2009, 10:30:27 pm »
« Edited: December 08, 2009, 10:40:22 pm by cinyc »

Yup.

New York: http://www.dec.ny.gov/lands/42065.html
Northeast: http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m1016/is_n5-6_v97/ai_10737450/?tag=content;col1
Hardwood trees, generally, which are the type that mainly grows in the NE: http://www.hardwoodinfo.com/articles/view/135
General, US: http://www.newton.dep.anl.gov/askasci/bot00/bot00090.htm
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cinyc
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« Reply #147 on: December 08, 2009, 11:18:56 pm »
« Edited: December 08, 2009, 11:21:55 pm by cinyc »

In rural western PA there is a great deal of strip mining and heavy handed lumbering going on. Such as some places are looking completely bare. There's no reason to believe a trend like that would not continue.

According to Pennsylvania Department of Conservation’s Natural Resources, there was no significant net change in PA forest acreage from 1989 to 2004.  663,000 acres were lost, but 617,500 acres were gained.  That's a net loss of 45,500 acres over 15 years - about 3000 acres a year - which is hardly significant when combined with reported gains in the rest of the Northeast or the significant increases earlier in the 20th century.  

The losses was largely due to residential and industrial development, not strip mining or tree farming.  The majority of the gains came from reclaimed agricultural lands.
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cinyc
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« Reply #148 on: December 09, 2009, 12:16:04 am »

That's not going to be sufficient.  Additional changes will have to be made to the bill because the Northeast isn't regulating of private lands.  For example (subject to whatever changes are made to Section C):

Sustainable Forestry Act

Section A: Purpose

1. The Northeast region is home to over 40 million acres of hardwood and softwood forests used for construction, manufacturing, energy, and other uses. The Northeast region recognizes that sustainable forestry is necessary to create a healthy and diverse environment and create a lasting industry that continues to provide jobs to Northeasterners. The Northeast recognizes that current forestry practices are unsustainable and that a more reasonable replacement level must be mandated.

Section B: Regulations

1. Forestry (the act of clearing or eliminating more than 10 trees for commercial purposes) on Northeast public lands shall be regulated by the region to provide sustainability.

2. The acreage of forestry shall not be allowed below 35 million acres at any given point in time.  (Note: I don't know why we need this when we determine how much forestland we own and the uses thereof)

2.3. Forestry on Northeast public or private lands by any company or organization that has not obtained a permit from the Northeast region is hereby prohibited.

34. Any company or organization removing more than 10 trees from Northeast public land in any calendar year for commercial use is REQUIRED to replace the acreage of trees removed at a 1:1 ratio. Companies and/or organizations are REQUIRED to ensure survivability of the new growth.  [Question: Forever?  Or some set period]

5. A 5% tax credit is available to any company/organization that prove compliant with the above regulations and publicly commit to sustainable forestry and the preservation of Northeastern biodiversity. (Note: I don't know why we'd need to give a credit to companies we're letting cut on public land)

4.  Nothing in this Act shall prohibit individuals from cutting up to 10 trees per year for firewood or other personal use on parcels of Northeast public land where such activity is expressly permitted by the laws or regulations of the Northeast.
 
Section C: Non-compliance

1. Any company/organization found violating the terms of this act shall be subject to a fine of no less than twice the amount of estimated damage caused to the region's hardwood and/or softwood forests.
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cinyc
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« Reply #149 on: December 09, 2009, 12:20:16 am »

I'll add a Section D, as well

Section D: Public Land Use

1. The Northeast region will no longer be allowed to sell wooded land to private owners.

That becomes a potential problem when someone wants to build a power line or something to a town that needs it.  We don't have many statewide referenda in New York - but when we do, it's usually granting an exemption of some sort for a trade of public land for private land in Adirondack Park.  At a minimum, we need to allow swaps of equal value.

What about leases?
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