From the Daily News:
Senate education bigwig Toby Ann Stavisky's son is a lobbyist for a firm that goes before his mother - and also lists her as a client, the Daily News has learned.
Evan Stavisky is a partner with The Parkside Group, which has a client list that includes SUNY-Buffalo and several CUNY entities, including Queens College.
Toby Ann Stavisky (D-Queens) became head of the Higher Education Committee in January, when Democrats took control of the state Senate.
Parkside, which also does political consulting for a host of elected officials, lists the senator as a client, and records show she paid the firm more than $200,000 last year.
Toby Ann Stavisky and Parkside deny there is any undue influence.
Also from the Daily News:
Susan Lerner of Common Cause-New York called the commission's opinion "exhibit 1 on why we need real ethics reform. ... It's just not reasonable to ask members to sit in judgment of other members."
Lerner said she agrees with Padavan and Golden that there should be an ethics probe but fears the state lacks a proper mechanism to do it.
"If the commission already issued a letter saying they don't see the obvious conflict of interest, which is as big as a barn, why would we get a different outcome?" she asked.
Senate Majority Leader Malcolm Smith defended Toby Ann Stavisky, just minutes after calling for changes in the state ethics law to help restore public confidence.
"The question ... at hand that we want to answer for the public is, 'Are you guys doing business on behalf of the people or on behalf of your friends?'" Smith said when announcing a bill requiring more disclosure by lawmakers.
Smith said he is not concerned about his Senate Higher Education Committee chairwoman being lobbied by her son's firm.