ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Government watchdog groups say a string of upcoming trials involving six former key figures in New York state politics will put the spotlight on the need for ethics reforms in Albany.

Leaders of groups such as the New York Public Interest Research Group say Thursday the separate trials scheduled to start in each of the next six months will keep the corruption issue in the public eye.

Among the six men facing trials are two former leaders of the state Legislature — Democrat Sheldon Silver and Republican Dean Skelos — whose convictions were tossed out, and former top aide to Gov. Andrew Cuomo, Joseph Percoco. He's scheduled to go on trial Jan. 22.

The civic organizations are calling on state leaders to pass several ethics reform measures this year.

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