January 2013 News

January 22, 2013                                                                       



            The governor’s Executive Budget proposal set the stage for weeks of public review and compromise with many details yet to be worked out. The governor’s proposal fails to address the pressing need for mandate relief and more equitable school aid formula. Through my position on the Assembly Ways and Means Committee, I will make these issues and all of our local concerns a focal point of the legislature’s revisions to this spending plan.



January 16, 2013                                                                                       


           I recently was appointed Minority Whip.  The Minority Whip is the highest-ranking individual in the minority party, outranked only by the Minority Leader.  The Minority Whip helps ensure that Minority Members are present for necessary votes.

It is a great honor to be named Minority Whip, which will allow me to help lead the Assembly Minority Conference as we fight to create a better New York for all of our families.


In addition to my work as the Minority Whip, I have also been named to various committees including Ways and Means, Agriculture, Insurance and the Racing and Wagering Committee.

I have been appointed as ranking Minority Member on the Veterans Affairs Committee, I will have the opportunity to help support and honor the brave young men and women who answered the call to defend our freedoms and way of life as Americans. It is an honor to serve in this new capacity to bolster our commitment to our courageous veterans.



January 15, 2013                                                                                        



         Today I cast my vote against a poor legislative process that shut the public out of a critical discourse and prevented a measured, responsible approach to protecting our children and families. Major gun control legislation was brought to the Assembly floor without any public commentary or proper time for legislative review. This hasty process betrayed the need for compassionate, reasonable and substantive debate.

         In light of recent tragedies in places like Webster and Newtown, I share our communities' desire to ensure that New York’s laws provide the public safety protections that our families need and deserve. However, the hurried passage of this critical legislation is an example of government dysfunction at its worst. Forcing through a massive overhaul of gun control regulations without properly reviewing any of the constitutional or budgetary implications is the kind of unaccountability that has caused the public to lose its faith and trust in Congress. Instead of hastily infringing upon the Second Amendment rights of New Yorkers, we should have engaged in a measured debate that truly protects our children and families from dangerous criminals and those unfit to bear arms. The dysfunction of Albany and the total disregard for our citizens’ input into this process is totally unacceptable!


January 9, 2013                                                                                       



            The Governor’s State of the State address detailed his personal agenda for the 2013 legislative session. His plans to promote Upstate New York’s economy and invest in programs that will put the state on the cutting edge of high-tech innovation will provide a much-needed boost for our region. However, his presentation lacked any plans to address unfunded mandate relief, one of the biggest issues facing state government this year. No legislative agenda can be considered complete without a substantive plan to free our schools, towns and taxpayers from the burden of unfunded mandates.

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