Issues: Controlled Substances

New Community Initiative To Combat Drug Abuse

ONEONTA, 02/24/14 -- State Senator James L. Seward (R/C/I - Oneonta) today joined Mallinckrodt Pharmaceuticals and the City of Oneonta Police Department to unveil a new drug take-back collection box inside the Oneonta Public Safety Building at 81 Main Street in Oneonta.  

Mallinckrodt is providing a lock box at the Oneonta police station for people to dispose of their unused, unwanted, or expired medications.  This is the most recent installment of Mallinckrodt’s continued efforts for patient safety and education.  

February 24, 2014

2014 Legislative Questionnaire/What Are Your Priorities?

As we proceed through the 2014 Legislative session, I’d like your feedback on issues that may be considered, such as medical marijuana, universal full-day pre-kindergarten, and campaign finance reform. I want to know what your priorities are. What concerns you the most? Please share your thoughts by filling out this survey.

February 20, 2014

Senator Flanagan Joins With Senator Hannon To Get Insurance Rights For Families Affected By Heroin Epidemic

With the recent death of actor Phillip Seymour Hoffman highlighting the growing impact of heroin and other drugs, Senator John Flanagan (2nd Senate District) announced today that he is joining with Senator Kemp Hannon (6th Senate District) in his effort to provide families affected by addiction with the tools they need to fight this serious disease.  Senators Flanagan and Hannon are sponsoring legislation (S.4623) that would put treatment decisions for those struggling with addiction in the hands of physicians as opposed to insurance companies.

February 18, 2014


The New York Senate today passed the “Public Assistance Integrity Act,” sponsored by Senator Tom Libous, which would prohibit welfare benefits from being used to purchase alcohol and tobacco, or to be used at liquor stores, casinos and strip clubs in New York.

“Public Assistance should not be spent at liquor stores, casinos or strip clubs, but under New York State Law, it’s legal. We need to stop this abuse,” said Libous. “Every welfare dollar spent at the liquor store is money that could be going to help families get back on their feet.”

February 5, 2014

Griffo: Time is Running Out to Cure E.B.T. Abuse

UTICA – Sen. Joseph A. Griffo today called on the state Assembly to support legislation that would prevent New Yorkers from using public-assistance funds on alcohol, tobacco, gambling or strippers.“New York has just 30 days left to prove it has tried to curtail E.B.T. debit card fraud and abuse, or lose out on $120 million in federal funding for needy families,” said Griffo, R-Rome. “It’s important that we pass this legislation now, so that those on public assistance who play by the rules aren’t hurt.”Media reports and public documents have proved that E.B.T.

January 24, 2014

Local Leaders React to Cuomo's Tax Plans and Marijuana Stance

by Jim Kenyon

In order to get into the convention center to hear the State of the State, people had to file past a loud group of protesters calling for a ban on fracking for natural gas, and others opposed to the New York SAFE Act which became the centerpiece to last year's speech.

On Wednesday, the Governor talked about creating jobs by relieving the tax burden on employers He wants to reduce the corporate income tax, abolish it all together for upstate manufacturers and put a freeze on property taxes.

Senator Dave Valesky supports the efforts. " We feel very confident that we'll be successful in providing meaningful tax relief to the taxpayers of our state." he told CNY Central's Jim Kenyon.

January 13, 2014

'Watchdog Report: Buyers, renters left in dark on former meth-making in their new home'

A special "Watchdog Report" in the Sunday, December 15, 2013 Star-Gazette highlighted the reemergence of meth across the Southern Tier and devoted special examination to the need for a state law to disclose to potential homebuyers if a residence is the site of a former meth lab.

Read more, "Buyers, renters left in dark on former meth-making in their new home"

December 18, 2013

Sen. Krueger Introduces Bill to Regulate and Tax Marijuana in New York State

Joined by a broad spectrum of drug law reform advocates and fellow elected officials, State Senator Liz Krueger (D-Manhattan) announced that she will be introducing the Marijuana Regulation and Taxation Act (MRTA) today. The legislation would legalize, regulate, and tax marijuana under state law along lines similar to the state’s current system regulating alcohol, and would represent a new approach for New York State after decades of costly, counterproductive policies that have produced racially discriminatory outcomes.

“Prohibition of marijuana is a policy that just hasn’t worked, no matter how you look at it, and it’s time to have an honest conversation about what we should do next,” said Sen. Krueger. “The illegal marijuana economy is alive and well, and our unjust laws are branding nonviolent New Yorkers, especially young adults, as criminals, creating a vicious cycle that ruins lives and needlessly wastes taxpayer dollars. Worst of all, this system has resulted in a civil rights disaster: African Americans are dramatically more likely to be arrested for pot possession than whites, despite similar rates of marijuana use among both groups.”

December 11, 2013


Senator Jack M. Martins attended a hearing held by the Senate Standing Committee on Alcohol and Drug Abuse, chaired by Senator Phil Boyle, that included testimony from various experts in the field of addiction treatment and prevention. Among those who testified were New York State Officer of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services Commissioner Arlene Gonzales-Sanchez and Dr. Jeffrey Reynolds, Executive Director of the Long Island Coalition of Alcoholism and Drug Dependence. 

The hearing examined the problem and drug and alcohol addiction and abuse. The problem is a serious one in our region that will take a community effort to combat.

Also attending was New York State Assemblyman Joseph Saladino. 

November 14, 2013

Senator Zeldin and the Suffolk County Sober Home Oversight Board Address the State of Sober Homes in Suffolk


Senator Zeldin and the Suffolk County Sober Home Oversight Board Address the State of Sober Homes in Suffolk

Senator Lee M. Zeldin (R-C-I, Shirley), in conjunction with Suffolk County Legislator Kate Browning and the Suffolk County Sober Home Oversight Board, held a successful event yesterday to examine and discuss the state of Sober Living Homes in Suffolk County.

October 16, 2013

Grisanti-Sponsored Legislation Restricting Sale Of Medicine Containing 'DXM' To Minors Signed Into Law

New York State Senator Mark J. Grisanti (R, I-60) today announced legislation he introduced earlier this year was signed into law by Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo that restricts the sale of certain cold medicine and other cold remedies to minors in New York State containing the ingredient dextromethorphan, also known as "DXM."

The restrictions, which will go into effect in late December, prohibits the sale to minors of medications that contain DXM, an ingredient that experts say is being abused by teenagers as a way to get high.

September 30, 2013


A Column By Sen. Patrick M. Gallivan

Like everything in the United States, drug use and abuse has evolved alongside the ebb and flow of larger American culture. The sixties and seventies saw the rise in recreational use of marihuana and psychedelics like LSD. Later cocaine become a popular substance of choice, and along with it, the development of crack cocaine – a compound so addictive and destructive that many communities are still struggling to recover from the crack epidemic of the late eighties and early nineties that devastated neighborhoods and urban centers across the country. More recently, we have experienced an increase in heroin and synthetic opioid use along with designer drugs like ecstasy and methamphetamine.

September 27, 2013


     Senator Charles J. Fuschillo, Jr. (R-Merrick) recently announced that legislation he supported to stop the sale and use of deadly bath salt-type drugs has been signed into law by Governor Cuomo. The “bath salt-type’ drugs have been linked to several deaths of young people in New York. 

     The new law will further curb the use of ‘bath salts’ by adding new compounds used to make these types of drugs to the state's banned substances list. It classifies these compounds as Schedule I stimulant controlled substances and imposes criminal penalties on those who sell, use and/or possess these drugs. The law makes it a felony to sell the substances to a minor or on school grounds.

September 13, 2013

Kennedy and Ryan Mark One-Year Anniversary Of New York’s Landmark I-STOP Law

State Lawmakers Announce New Tools, Established with Comprehensive I-STOP law, to Combat Prescription Drug Abuse. 

New Online Database Will Help Prevent “Doctor-Shopping”, Stop Drug Abuse Problems Before They Start – Law Was Enacted One Year Ago, Passed Unanimously by NY State Legislature.

BUFFALO – Today, August 26, 2013, New York State Senator Tim Kennedy and New York State Assemblyman Sean Ryan announced the implementation of key provisions of the Internet System for Tracking Over-Prescribing (I-STOP) legislation that was passed last year, and signed into law on August 27, 2012.

August 26, 2013

Rochester Associate Professor, nominated by Senator O'Brien, appointed to State Tobacco Board

ROCHESTER, N.Y.Scott McIntosh, Ph.D., director of the Greater Rochester Area Tobacco Cessation Center (GRATCC) and associate professor, Department of Public Health Sciences at the University of Rochester Medical Center (URMC), was nominated by Senator Ted O'Brien to the New York State Tobacco Control Program Advisory Board. His appointment was made in late June and he began serving on the board this month.

July 16, 2013

Senator Marcellino Asks You to “SHED THE MEDS”

Senator Carl L. Marcellino is partnering with the Suffolk County Department, the Centerport Fire Department and the Huntington Fire Department to help residents safely dispose of their expired or unused medications.

The “Shed the Meds” programs will take place Tuesday, July 16,  from 3 pm to 6 pm at the Centerport Fire Department 9 Park Circle, Centerport and  on Saturday,  August 3, from 9 am to Noon at the Huntington Fire Department, 1 Leverich Place, Huntington.

Residents can drop off any medication that has expired or they no longer need, where it will be collected and safely disposed of by officers from the Suffolk County Police Department.

July 2, 2013

Sen. Krueger Condemns 2 A.M. Passage of Special Liquor Law Carve-Out for 583 Park Avenue, Rose Group Catering Hall; Calls for Governor to Veto

Sen. Krueger condemned the Senate's passage -- at 2 a.m. last Saturday -- of legislation that would create a special exemption from the Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) Law for the Rose Group's full-time commercial catering hall at 583 Park Avenue, Manhattan (S. 5823 / A. 7992). Under the provisions of the ABC Law, the catering hall is ineligible for a full liquor license because it is located within 200 feet of an operating house of worship, the Central Presbyterian Church.

June 25, 2013

Summary of 2013 Senate Legislative Action




The New York State Senate approved the 2013-14 state budget that delivers on priorities outlined by the Senate Republican Conference to provide much-needed tax relief for middle-class families, help businesses create jobs, and, for the third consecutive year, the budget keeps spending growth below two percent, which is consistent with the local spending cap that applies to school districts and local governments.  It was also the third consecutive budget approved prior to the April 1 deadline.


June 24, 2013

Senate approves anti-meth legislation co-sponsored by O'Mara, targets meth labs

Albany, N.Y., June 13—The New York State Senate today approved legislation co-sponsored by Senator Tom O’Mara (R-C, Big Flats) to enhance the ability of local police and district attorneys to track and prosecute violations of restrictions on over-the-counter sales of cold medications that are key ingredients used in the manufacturing of methamphetamine.

June 13, 2013


New Data Finds NY Leads the Nation in Marijuana Arrests

Across State, Black New Yorkers 4.5 Times More Likely to Be Arrested as White New Yorkers; Disparity is 9-to-1 in Brooklyn and Manhattan

ALBANY -- With new data highlighting dramatic racial disparities in low-level marijuana arrests around New York, State Senator Daniel Squadron, Assemblymember Karim Camara, members of the Black, Puerto Rican, Hispanic, and Asian Legislative Caucus, the Drug Policy Alliance, the New York Civil Liberties Union, VOCAL-NY, and community members made an end-of-session push for Senate passage of legislation to bring consistency and fairness to marijuana arrests.

June 13, 2013
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