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New York State Legislative History Research: Debates & Journals

This guide is intended to help researchers locate print and online sources for New York State Legislative History Research.

Debates

Bills in the New York State Legislature can pass without debate, but if there was debate, the sources below may be accessed:

Legislative sessions are now broadcast live directly to the public through the Internet from the Assembly and Senate web sites:

http://assembly.state.ny.us/av/

http://www.nysenate.gov/new-york-state-senate-live

Channel 159 on Time Warner Cable television also broadcasts legislative proceedings.  When the legislature is not in session, the contact information and committee assignments of the members of the Assembly and Senate are displayed.

Transcripts of debates may be available for a fee from the New York Legislative Service:  www.nyls.org

 

Journals

A legislative journal is a daily record of actions taken by the Assembly or the Senate; not verbatim proceedings.

The Assembly journal is published in two volumes and the Senate journal is in one volume.  For both journals, you find the bill number, the bill summary and the sponsore arranged by date of introduction.  When bills are voted on, the ayes and nays are listed by the legislators' names. 

These journals are available at the New York State Library in Albany: http://www.nysl.nysed.gov/

and the New York Public Library Science, Business and Industry Library in Manhattan:  http://www.nypl.org/research/sibl/