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Letter: Deny pensions to convicted New York lawmakers

New York State Sen. Ruben Diaz Sr.

New York State Sen. Ruben Diaz Sr. Credit: Handout, 2009

In the Jan. 31 news story “Pension forfeiture bill approved,” I was not surprised to read a comment from state Sen. Rubén Díaz (D-Bronx). “This is wrong,” he said about legislation to strip pensions from lawmakers convicted of felonies.

I think it is right.

A public official who decides to violate the public trust needs to know that, through the loss of a pension, his or her family will be in jeopardy. This is because the official has violated the trust of his much bigger family by trying to get rich and by perpetuating a corrupt and costly culture so ingrained in too many of our public servants.

If putting his or her family in a difficult financial situation is part of the consequence, then the guilty party needs to know he or she did that to his or her family. I hope this will be a valuable deterrent to bad behavior.

Ron Bode, Amityville