Issues: Authorities and Commissions

Governor Cuomo and Legislative Leaders Announce Agreement on 2012-13 State Budget

Governor Cuomo released the following announcement on March 27, 2012:

The Budget continues the Governor’s commitment to fiscal responsibility while creating jobs and strengthening communities across the state. It closes a multi-billion dollar deficit with no new taxes, fees or gimmicks, limits spending growth to two percent or below for the second year in a row, and launches the New York Works Task Force to invest billions of dollars to rebuild the state's roads, bridges, parks, and other infrastructure and create tens of thousands of jobs.

March 29, 2012
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Gianaris Bill Opposes Police Quotas

The Queens Gazette reports on a new bill proposed by Senator Gianaris, which opposes Police Department quota requirements.

Addressing a very sensitive area of police-public relations, state Senator Michael Gianaris has proposed a bill opposing Police Department quota requirements.

 

“The use of quotas puts undue pressure on our police force and results in too many unwarranted arrests and tickets,” Gianaris explained as he released the legislation.

 

“Raising the penalty for the imposition of quotas would deter the practice and ensure that police activity is conducted for public safety first and foremost,” the Astoria lawmaker added.

 

March 28, 2012
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Taking On Police Tactic, Critics Hit Racial Divide

An article by The New York Times talks about the stop-and-frisk police tactic, which has garnered significant criticism from minority lawmakers and citizens. Senator Gianaris introduced legislation with Assemblymember Camara that would make it illegal for police departments to impose quotas for a certain number of stops officers make.

ALBANY — Black and Latino lawmakers, fed up over the frequency with which New York City police officers are stopping and frisking minority men, are battling what they say is a racial divide as they push legislation to rein in the practice.

 

March 26, 2012
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Senator Gianaris participates in the street renaming 43rd Street and 48th Avenue "Winged Fist Way"

Senator Gianaris at the street renaming 43rd Street and 48th Avenue "Winged Fist Way" in Sunnyside. Gianaris was one of the early supporters of this initiative.

March 23, 2012
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3/18/12 Ch.7 Up Close with Diana Williams

This is a YouTube video of Senator Gianaris' interview with Assemblymember Jeffries on Up Close with Diana Williams, which aired on Sunday.

Watch the video here.

March 22, 2012
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Senator Gianaris Speaks on Bill Establishing New District Lines

This is a YouTube video of Senator Gianaris speaking on the Senate floor on the bill establishing new district lines. 

Watch the video here

March 22, 2012
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State Lawmakers, Government Watchdog Discuss Albany All-Nighter

NY1 posted a video that features Senator Gianaris and his discussion of the "Albany All-Nighter."

Watch the video here

March 19, 2012
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Gianaris Shove It

This video captures Senator Gianaris' closing remarks during Senate session, in which the agreed-upon redistricting maps were under dispute. 

Watch the video here

March 19, 2012
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'Shove it': Senate Dems grapple with a redistricting plan they can't do anything about

An editorial posted by Capital discusses the debate between Senate Republicans and Senate Democrates over the agreed-upon redistricting lines, which Senate Democrats have strongly criticized.

Governor Andrew Cuomo signed a redistricting deal that his fellow Democrats in the minority of the State Senate have been criticizing as "unfair," "unconstitutional" and the "worst" in the state's history.

 

But what led them to walk out of the Senate chambers last night, ostensibly, was a Republican move to change the agreed-upon time allowed to debate the bill from four hours to two.

 

Until the walkout, the debate had been substantive, if escalatingly hostile.

 

March 19, 2012
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Senator Gianaris Explains Vote Against S.2601

This video shows Senator Gianaris voting against a bill that does not allow residents from power plant-heavy areas, such as western Queens, to become trustees of the New York Power Authorities Board of Trustees.

Watch the video here.

March 19, 2012
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Committee Meeting: Corporations, Authorities and Commissions Meeting

Senate Standing Committee on Corporations, Authorities and Commissions Senator Michael Ranzenhofer, Chair 1:30 PM, Monday, March 19, 2012 Room 801 LOB

March 19, 1:30 PM - 1:43 PM
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Senate Passes Bill to Increase Port Authority Accountability

The New York State Senate today passed legislation to ensure the proper functioning of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey as an open, transparent and accountable interstate authority. The bill (S.5878) is named the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey Transparency and Accountability Act and is sponsored by Senator Andrew Lanza (R-I, Staten Island). The Act is part of a bipartisan, bi-state effort designed to create a new system of accountability at the Port Authority.  “With passage of this legislation in the New York Senate, we are one step closer to bringing urgently needed reforms to the Port Authority requiring more open, transparent and accountable operations,” said Senator Andrew Lanza.

March 15, 2012
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SENATE PASSES 2012-13 BUDGET RESOLUTION

Gallivan: “Senate Plan Cuts Taxes, Reforms Medicaid, Protects Seniors and Schools.”

The New York State Senate voted to approve its 2012-13 Senate Budget resolution, continuing its focus on state spending, job creation, and structural reform to government.

The Senate budget, at just under $132.5 billion, keeps the total state spending increase below two percent, and spends less than the Executive Budget. The budget closes a $2 billion budget deficit and builds on last year’s successes in putting the state’s fiscal house in order.

March 13, 2012
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Statement from Senator Valesky Regarding Syracuse Common Council Passage of Land Bank Legislation

I applaud the Common Council for moving legislation forward to create a city/county land bank. As the author of the state law, I am extremely encouraged that Onondaga County and the city of Syracuse will have the opportunity to be one of the first land banks in the state. Vacant and abandoned housing has been a problem in our communities for too long, and the application of this new strategy is a promising solution.

 

March 12, 2012
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Pol bid to halt cop-tix quotas

The New York Post wrote an article about a new law, proposed by Senator Gianaris, that would outlaw police quotas for arrests and tickets.

Police brass pushing arrest and ticket quotas could find themselves in jail for up to a year under a bill that state Sen. Michael Gianaris plans to introduce tomorrow.

Backed by the Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association, the bill would make it illegal for supervisors to require cops to make a certain number of arrests over a specified period.

Noting that good officers are being punished, Gianaris (D-Queens) said, “This bill would increase the penalties when quotas are used to evaluate performance.”

March 12, 2012
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Democratic State Senator, His District Threatened, Focuses on Party’s Future

The New York Times wrote a piece on Senator Gianaris and the Democrats' efforts to recapture the Senate majority.

Michael N. Gianaris, a Democratic state senator from Astoria, Queens, was in bed at 11:30 one night in January when a reporter called. Republicans were drafting new Senate districts to reflect the 2010 census, and word had leaked of what they had in store for Mr. Gianaris: his neighborhood would be appended to the district of a fellow Democratic senator.

[...]

“One thing I’ve learned being in public service is that feathers must be ruffled if anything’s going to change,”

March 12, 2012
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Sen. Gianaris on Redistricting Amendment

Capital Tonight's Liz Benjamin interviewed Senator Gianaris in regards to a potential amendment to the redistricting process. 

Watch the interview here

March 12, 2012
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Details emerge on possible redistricting amendment

An editorial by The Empire talks about the discussed ammendment to the constitution that would bring about change to the redistricting process. Michael Gianaris and other critics, however, point out that the proposed ammendment would still allow legislatures to have final say, which defeats the purpose of redistricting reform.

The Times-Union’s Casey Seiler has a piece up today about the emerging details of a possible deal between Governor Andrew Cuomo and the state legislature for a constitutional amendment to change the state’s redistricting process.

 

March 2, 2012
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Details emerge on possible constitutional change

Times Union reports on negotiations between the Governor, Assembly, and Senate for a possible constitutional ammendment that would create an independent redistricting body. Many believe the new ammendment will not keep legislatures from influencing the redistricting process, including Senator Gianaris, who believes that "if the final product still leaves the Legislature with the final say, we’ve achieved nothing.”

A possible constitutional change to New York’s redistricting process would create a 10-member independent panel to draw the state’s political lines beginning in 2021, but would allow the Legislature to make final tweaks to the plan if the Assembly and Senate fail to pass it after two tries.

[...]

March 2, 2012
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Veto the map, Gov. Cuomo

Former New York Mayor, Ed Koch, wrote an editorial for the New York Daily News that calls out the current redistricting proposal for being blatantly partisan and urges Governor Cuomo to veto any redistricting bill proposed by the legislature.

About two years ago, I felt the same way as most New Yorkers — our state government was dysfunctional, self-serving and an embarrassment. Along with a group of like-minded reformers, I decided to do something about it, forming New York Uprising, an advocacy effort to change the way legislative and congressional district lines are drawn.

 

Our goal, simply, was to return power to the people.

 

March 2, 2012
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