From The Morning Memo:

The 2018 legislative session officially started nine days ago.

Since then, one lawmaker has been indicted on fraud charges and a top legislative leader is facing a sexual misconduct allegation.

The Capitol is still girding for a half-dozen public corruption trials and a coming battle over closing a $4 billion budget gap.

“It was going to be a very difficult year anyway and we’ve learned that it’s never a dull moment here in Albany,” said Assemblywoman Pat Fahy, an Albany Democrat.

IDC Leader Jeff Klein was accused Wednesday of forcibly kissing a then-legislative aide outside of a bar in March 2015. Klein denies the incident took place, but calls grew throughout the day Thursday for an independent investigation of the allegation.

“I agree with the governor and others who have said there absolutely needs to be an investigation here,” Fahy said. “Reading the account, The Huffington Post account, is very disturbing.”

The allegation against Klein also comes at a politically tricky time for the state Senate, where a deal is in place to unite the eight-member IDC and the mainline conference by the spring. Republicans who have worked with Klein in a coalition government saw some politics at play.

“It is clearly a movement to try to unseat Jeff Klein and what follows would be, some people hope, of the Independent Democratic Conference,” said Sen. John DeFrancisco, a Syracuse Republican.

The IDC lawmakers themselves laid low on Thursday. Calls to their offices requesting interviews were not returned, save for a response from Sen. Jesse Hamilton’s spokesman, who would not comment.

Meanwhile in the Assembly, Democrat Pamela Harris is the latest lawmaker to face corruption charges. But it is not likely lawmakers will take up any ethics legislation in response.

“I also think that to some extent that is an indication that our laws are actually working,” Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan said Tuesday at a news conference. “We have made significant changes, we have more disclosure, more transparency, more limitations on what people can do in the Legislature.”

Good-government groups call this another missed opportunity.

“Whistling pass the graveyard doesn’t necessarily mean you’re off the hook,” said NYPIRG’s Blair Horner. “Every month there will be a high-profile corruption case starting in New York and all these new things can happen.”

Those trials include the corruption case against former close Cuomo aide Joe Percoco and the retrials of the two former legislative leaders, Sheldon Silver and Dean Skelos