January 24, 2008

The NYC 9/11 Ballot Initiative Campaign

The NYC 9/11 Ballot Initiative Campaign:

Our Mission

The NYC 9/11 Ballot Initiative Campaign is committed to a thorough, transparent, and non-partisan examination of the facts surrounding the crimes of September 11, 2001, to be accomplished through the creation of an independent, investigative body, a Citizen’s Commission, staffed by competent, professional individuals of the highest caliber. The Commissioners will be mandated to search for the truth, wherever that search leads, without prejudice or preconception, and to recommend the best course, as they see it, to achieve justice for all those involved in, and affected by, the 9/11 terror attacks.

We neither endorse nor espouse any theories or conclusions other than those that will grow out of a responsible, thoughtful, judicious, and comprehensive examination of the facts. We welcome and encourage the support of all Americans, as well as concerned citizens around the world.

We are sponsoring a November 2008 General Election ballot initiative which will allow the voters of New York City to mandate, through public referendum, directly and democratically, the formation of a new Citizen’s Commission to Re-Investigate 9/11. Armed with subpoena power, the Citizen’s Commission will re-examine the facts and the hundreds of unanswered questions surrounding the September 11, 2001 terror attacks and their aftermath.

We do so because we firmly believe that the victims of the 9/11 attacks have yet to receive proper justice. We firmly believe as Americans we have a moral obligation to take the necessary steps to obtain that justice.

We assert as fact that no authorized, sanctioned body at any level of government has properly investigated the crimes of 9/11, nor the environmental aftermath of the World Trade Center collapses. The extent to which these environmental consequences have negatively affected the health of first responders and others exposed is well known. The fact that almost none of the more than $1.5 billion allocated for the healthcare of our nation’s heroes has been utilized for its intended purpose is a national disgrace. Our heroes deserve better than this. They need medication, not litigation; respect, not neglect.

We believe that Congress and our politicians have forsaken us. Now is the time for all patriotic Americans to unite-in-action in order to secure justice for our fallen, justice for our heroes, and justice for our country and the world.

And we can.

New York State Home Rule Law #37 allows for the citizens, through ballot referendum, to vote directly on whether or not a new investigation will take place. In doing so, it allows for the creation of a Citizen’s Commission to Re-Investigate 9/11.

We, of the NYC 9/11 Ballot Initiative, have initiated a petition drive in order to secure the required number of signatures of registered voters necessary to get the referendum on the November 2008 New York City ballot. We have until May 1, 2008 to do so.

About the investigation:

How will a new investigation proceed?

This investigation will be non-partisan and independent of government control. A panel of Commissioners will conduct hearings to evaluate evidence provided by teams of researchers including new evidence since the termination of the Kean/Hamilton Commission. These teams will compile evidence on every possible category of investigation. They will question witnesses, experts, and issue subpoenas when necessary. The scientists, legal counsel, researchers and investigators who make up the commission are all committed to finding the truth, following the trail of evidence, wherever it may lead. Finally, the Commission will publish a one or more reports.

Does this investigation support a 'conspiracy theory?'

No. The 9/11 Ballot Initiative is committed to an independent, thorough, transparent, and non-partisan examination of the facts surrounding the events of September 11, 2001. The Commissioners will be mandated to search for the truth, wherever that search leads, without prejudice or preconception, and to recommend the best course, as they see it, to achieve justice for all those involved in, and affected by, the terror attacks upon the United States.

The quest for truth and justice is our sole agenda. We neither endorse nor espouse any a priori theories or conclusions other than those that will grow out of a responsible, thoughtful, judicious, and comprehensive examination of the facts. We welcome and encourage the support of all Americans, as well as concerned citizens throughout the world.

Will a new investigation work to obtain justice and necessary benefits for 9/11 First Responders and others who were at the scene?

Yes. Up to 70% of First Responders and others afflicted have become ill or died, or will likely become ill in the future. There are also reports of birth defects in children of the afflicted workers. The illnesses that have been reported in workers include cancers of the lung, throat, tongue, testicles, breasts, bladder, kidney, colon, intestine, and rare blood cancers, as well as other cancers such as lymphoma, leukemia, Hodgkin's disease and myeloma. The government has yet to allocate the necessary funds to deal with this health crisis, consistently refusing to acknowledge that any of these people are sick because of 9/11. Congress allocated $1 billion to a fund for First Responders and other injured parties, under the name World Trade Center Captive Insurance Company, but so far, none of the over 8,000 sick and injured workers claims filed toward this fund have been granted. To make matters worse, many have suffering terrible financial losses from medical expenses and inability to work.

The Petition:


1. The title of this local law is “Act to Create a Temporary Independent Commission to Investigate 9/11”.
2. An independent, temporary NYC commission (the “Commission”) is hereby created to conduct a comprehensive, fact-driven investigation into the events that took place on 9/11, as well as to thoroughly examine related events before and after the attacks, including any activities attempting to hide, cover up, impede or obstruct any investigation into these 9/11 events, following wherever the facts may lead. The Commission shall publish one or more reports of their findings.
3. The Commission shall consist of up to 15 Commissioners including Dr. William Pepper (international attorney), Ralph Schoenman (historian), Dr. Edgar Mitchell (Apollo 14 astronaut), Lincoln Chafee (former Senator), Splitting-the-Sky (Mohawk tribal member), Lorie Van Auken (9/11 widow), Ed Asner (actor/activist), Bishop Thomas Gumbleton (Roman Catholic) and others to be appointed by majority vote of the Commission members to bring the Commission up to as many as 15 members and to fill any vacancies thereafter from nominees proposed by any member of the Commission. The Commission shall have a duty to maintain the number of Commissioners at no less than nine and to fill vacancies promptly.
4. The Commission shall act by majority vote, adopt its own Rules of Procedure and shall choose its Chairman, Vice Chairman, Treasurer and Secretary.
5.The Commission shall have the power to issue subpoenas for documents and testimony, take and record testimony, and to apply to the appropriate federal, state, out-of-state or foreign courts for the issuance of subpoenas, Letters Rogatory, or Applications for Mutual Assistance, for service upon persons, corporations, agencies or other entities beyond the subpoena power granted to the Commission.
6. The Commission shall have no authority to act beyond 3 years from the date of their creation by the voters of NYC, except by extension of term and financing through NYC legislation enacted by the City Council or Mayor, or by vote of the electorate at a general election, pursuant to appropriate statute such as Section 37 of the Municipal Home Rule Law or Section 40 of the New York City Charter or other law.
7. The Commission shall have a budget of $10,000,000 per year, for the conduct of its investigation and related activities. Financing shall be entirely drawn from private contributions. No public funds shall be requested or accepted. Pledges and/or promissory notes of specific contributions from wealthy private individuals are being obtained with payment subject to enactment of the Initiative by the voters of New York City. A substantial five figure seed money fund has been established as of January 2008, and a world wide internet fund raising campaign has been launched. In addition, four prominent citizens have pledged substantial matching fund contributions. Celebrity parties, concerts and other fund raising gatherings and activities are also being planned to take place throughout the months of the Petition drive. Cumulatively, these sources will provide for the funding of the investigation.
8. Commission disbursements shall require the signatures of at least two Commissioners serving under the Treasurer on the Commission’s Finance Committee which shall consist of a total of three Commissioners appointed by the Commission. The Commission’s finances and accounts shall be audited each year by an independent public accounting firm appointed by the Commission.
9. The Commission will also endeavor to consider the effects of the 9/11 attacks on the health and well being of police, firefighters, the enormous numbers of other first responders, local residents and others affected, and examine ways and means of alleviating the health care crisis which afflicts many of the above through the enforcement of their the right to health care services and compensation.
10. As a law-enforcement agency, the Commission shall have the right not to publicly disclose activities of a secret or confidential nature and shall have the duty of recording the taking of testimony by film or video, and the duty of providing an opportunity for CSpan and other television networks, stations and programs to broadcast Commission proceedings on a live or other basis.
11. Each Commissioner shall be paid a base annual salary of $112,500 (or such other base salary as is then being paid to members of the New York City Council) and the same benefits received by such members, plus reimbursement of out-of-pocket expenses actually incurred on behalf of the Commission, economy air and train fares to and from a Commissioner’s residence outside of New York City.
12. Commissioners may come from any part of the world and shall not be required to maintain a residence in New York City or New York State.
13. The Commissioners are not required to devote 100% or substantially all of their time to the work of the Commission and it is expected that Commissioners will be able to continue with non-conflicting activities.
14. The Commission by a majority vote shall have the right, to seek indictments in any relevant Court located in the City of New York, or elsewhere and, at its discretion, to work with existing prosecutorial agencies or to seek the appointment of a special prosecutor under Section 701 of the New York County Law.
15. Accordingly, the Commission shall have the power to seek the appointment of a special prosecutor anywhere within New York State or in any other State, country or jurisdiction.
16. The Commission as a temporary investigative office of New York City shall, during its lifetime, enjoy the same immunities, privileges and prosecutorial discretion granted under law to elected prosecutors.
17.No New York City employee, past or present, shall have the right to avoid testifying before the Commission based on any prior agreements not to disclose or testify with any officials or agencies of New York City or other governmental agency; the Commission has the power to maintain secrecy and confidentiality of testimony or other disclosures where appropriate.
18. The Commission shall have the power to hire and fire clerical and other employees, attorneys, accountants, paralegals, experts, consultants and others in performance of their respective duties.
19. The Commission shall have the power to enter into contracts; and to create and enforce its rules.
20. This law shall be construed liberally to enable the Commission to conduct an independent investigation into 9/11, and issue one or more reports on the Commission’s investigation, and create one or more websites to provide public information about the work of the Commission.
21 If any provision of this law is held to be unconstitutional or invalid for any reason, the remaining provisions shall be in no manner affected thereby but shall remain in full force and effect.

source: http://www.nyc911initiative.org/PetitionFinal-01M.pdf
Dr. Pepper talks about this Ballot initiative near the end of this Hartford, November 3rd, 2007 presentation: