After Orca cut-and-paste, Greg Ball will review bill memos

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Greg Ball. (AP Photo/Mike Groll)
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ALBANY—An aide to State Senator Greg Ball said his office was reviewing legislation it sponsors after it apparently plagiarized parts of a bill memo.

The Albany Times-Union reported on Thursday that a Ball bill to ban killer whales from aquariums and water parks around the state lifted explanatory passages from a 17-year-old's Huffington Post essay as well as from an article about the documentary film “Blackfish.”

In a statement, Colin Schmitt, Ball's director of operations, thanked the Times-Union for bringing “this oversight” to his attention. The senator's office did not answer questions ahead of the original report, and Ball, a Putnam County Republican, suggested on Twitter that Times-Union writer Casey Seiler “should be nominated for a Pulitzer” for “breaking” news on a “slow news day.”

“This simple yet sloppy action taken flies in the face of the high standards of our office,” Schmitt said. “We have taken immediate and appropriate steps internally to address this oversight and address the staffer responsible. All memo language is being reviewed and will be corrected if necessary. We also thank Casey for his interest in preventing the abuse of animals, and bringing much needed attention to this important matter.”

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No killer whales currently reside in any New York aquariums.