Issues: Disability

SENATOR BONACIC ANNOUNCES NEW LAW TO PROTECT INDIVIDUALS WITH DEVELOPMENTAL DISABILITIES

Senator John J. Bonacic (R/C/I-Mt. Hope) announced that legislation he supported to protect individuals with developmental disabilities has been signed into law by Governor Andrew Cuomo. 

October 4, 2013
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SENATOR FUSCHILLO ANNOUNCES NEW LAW TO PROTECT INDIVIDUALS WITH DEVELOPMENTAL DISABILITIES

      Senator Charles J. Fuschillo, Jr. (R-Merrick) announced that legislation he supported to protect individuals with developmental disabilities has been signed into law by Governor Andrew Cuomo. 

     The legislation allocates up to $90 million in funding for the State’s Office for People With Developmental Disabilities (OPWDD) nonprofit providers to cover any funding shortages that result from recommendations developed by the OPWDD work group. The OPWDD work group was created in response to reductions in federal aid funding to develop a cost savings plan without compromising the quality of care patients receive. 

October 2, 2013
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New Law Restores Cuts to the Disabled

Earlier this year, Senator Lanza stood with his Senate colleagues to block $120 million in cuts to programs that serve developmentally disabled New Yorkers.  While their efforts during the 2013-1014 budget negotiations restored some of the funding, programs throughout the state were still in danger due to a $90 million budget shortfall --- threatening to diminish access to important services for thousands of developmentally disabled citizens across the state.

Few issues this year have generated more input from concerned constituents. That's why Senator Lanza is pleased to announce that support for these vital programs will now be protected under legislation that Governor Andrew Cuomo just signed into law.

October 1, 2013
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O'Mara applauds new law restoring funding for the state Office of People with Developmental Disabilities: 'We never gave up'

Albany, N.Y., September 30—Legislation co-sponsored by Senator Tom O’Mara (R-C, Big Flats) to restore a $90-million cut in funding to the state Office of People with Developmental Disabilities (OPWDD) that was included in this year’s state budget earlier this year, has been signed into law by Governor Andrew Cuomo.

The governor announced the signing over the weekend.

September 30, 2013
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Senator Kevin Parker Urges Governor & Mayor to Train NYPD to Address Mental Health Population

(Brooklyn, NY) –  At present, the New York Police Department (NYPD) is charged with dealing with approximately 100,000 annual 911 calls involving individuals with mental health concerns. These calls often result in traumatizing and sometimes tragic encounters between the police and individuals experiencing emotional distress.  On Wednesday, September 25, 2013, at Noon, the Communities for Crisis Intervention Teams (CCIT NYC) called for creation of specially trained crisis intervention teams that can respond to the huge numbers of  emotionally disturbed person (EDP) calls the NYPD receive each year.

September 26, 2013
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NEW HOTLINE ANNOUNCED FOR NEW YORK'S HEALTHCARE EXCHANGE

The New York State Department of Health has opened a hotline to help customers sign up for New York's healthcare exchange.  The enrollment period runs from October 1, 2013 through March 31, 2014.  You can reach the "NY State of Health" program at 1-855-355-5777.  The line will be open Monday through Friday 8 a.m to 5 p.m.  For additional information, please visit www.nystateofhealth.ny.gov.

September 19, 2013
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WNY Community Comes to Aid of Depew Family to Help their Twin Daughters with Cerebral Palsy

After years of work, the Geary family of Depew finally celebrates the completion of renovation work that makes their home more accessible to serve the needs of their twin daughters with cerebral palsy.

Senator Kennedy partnered with the family to generate widespread community support, and pushed state bureaucracy to be more responsive to their call for help. 

Kennedy: This is a uniquely Western New York story. Our community came together to help a neighbor in need.

August 9, 2013
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Senator Kennedy Urges State Education Department to Reform Regulations for Student-Athletes with Disabilities

State Ed guideline may block local student-athlete David Gorczynski from running cross country for his fourth and final year on his Orchard Park High School team.

Kennedy writes to State Education Commissioner urging a change to their policy to allow students with disabilities to participate in high school athletics all four years.

Kennedy: State Education Department Should Reform their Guidelines and Allow David Gorczynski to Cross the Finish Line

July 25, 2013
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Senator O'Brien fights to restore OPWDD funding, continues to work with advocates to address future needs

ROCHESTER, N.Y. – At the end of this year's legislative session, Senator Ted O’Brien worked to restore $90 million in funding to the Office for People with Developmental Disabilities (OPWDD). Today, Senator O'Brien joined local experts and advocates to discuss the importance of supporting quality services for New Yorkers with developmental disabilities and their families.

July 2, 2013
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Summary of 2013 Senate Legislative Action

 

2013-2014 NEW YORK STATE BUDGET

 

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
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Senator Kevin Parker on the Restoration of $90 million cut from Services to the Disabled

(Brooklyn, NY) “Only seven weeks ago, my Legislative colleagues were stunned by the Governor’s $120 million budget cut from services to the developmentally disabled. Thankfully by the end of negotiations we were able to restore $30 million of the of $120 million cut.

The Governor’s cuts reduced funding for our most vulnerable community members, and to the agencies that serve them. Our restoration of $30 million moderated the negative effects of that cut, but in the end people with developmental disabilities and their families lost essential services that they and their families rely on every day.

June 21, 2013
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Senator O'Brien commends local appointees to state boards

ROCHESTER, N.Y. – Four constituents of Senator Ted O'Brien have been appointed to vital new state advisory boards, where they will help to guide state agencies overseeing the care of special needs groups.

"Our region is a leader in providing quality care for individuals with special needs and in having specialized knowledge about a variety of medical areas," Senator O'Brien said. "It is an honor for these individuals, and our region, to have them bring their expertise to New York State government. I congratulate the four appointees and I know that they will serve this state well."

Justice Center Advisory Council Appointees

June 20, 2013
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Legislation Restoring Cuts to People with Developmental Disabilities Passes State Senate

Albany, NY - Democratic Conference Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins announced passage of legislation in the Senate today to restore funding to the Office for People with Developmental Disabilities (OPWDD).

Under the legislation, people with developmental disabilities and their families will continue to receive services which had been threatened by a $90 million cut to the OPWDD in the 2013-2014 State budget. The cut in State funds would have resulted in an additional loss of federal matching funds, translating to a maximum loss of $180 million to service providers.

June 19, 2013
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SEN. FARLEY ANNOUNCES SENATE GIVES FINAL PASSAGE TO BILL TO PROTECT OPWDD FROM FUNDING CUTS

State Senator Hugh T. Farley (R, C, I – Schenectady) announced the New York State Senate recently gave final passage to legislation (S4777D) that would protect providers of services for the developmentally disabled from state funding cuts.

The legislation would appropriate up to $90 million, or as much as is needed, to the Office for People with Developmental Disabilities (OPWDD) to protect providers from funding reductions if recommended savings measures falls short of projections.

Senate Republicans strongly opposed the proposal in the Governor’s budget for $240 million in across-the-board funding cuts to OPWDD. The Senate’s budget resolution, passed in March, called for the full restoration of funding for OPWDD.

June 19, 2013
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GALLIVAN ANNOUNCES FUNDING RESTORATIONS TO DEVELOPMENTALLY DISABLED SUPPORT PROGRAMS

ALBANY – Senator Patrick M. Gallivan (R-C-I, 59th District) announced that the New York State Senate reached an agreement today with the State Assembly and Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo to restore $90 million in cuts to not-for-profit support services and programs for the state’s developmentally disabled.

During this year’s budget process, Senator Gallivan and the State Senate were successfully able to restore a substantial portion of the initially proposed cuts, but significant reductions remained that threatened the welfare and stability of many individuals and families.

June 19, 2013
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Senate Gives Final Passage To Bill Protecting Developmentally Disabled From Funding Cuts

ALBANY, 06/18/13 -- State Senator James L. Seward (R/C/I – Oneonta) today announced final legislative passage of a bill that would protect providers for services for developmentally disabled from state funding cuts.

June 18, 2013
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O'Mara: Senate gives final OK to legislation restoring funding for people with developmental disabilities

Albany, N.Y., June 18—The State Senate today gave final legislative approval to legislation co-sponsored by Senator Tom O’Mara (R-C, Big Flats) to restore a $90-million cut in funding to the state Office of People with Developmental Disabilities (OPWDD) that was included in this year’s state budget. 

June 18, 2013
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FELDER: “WE FOUGHT THE GOOD FIGHT AND WE WON!”

Legislation (S4777D) co-sponsored by Senator Simcha Felder (D-Brooklyn) that protects providers of services for the developmentally disabled from state funding cuts passed the New York State Senate today. The bill was sponsored by Senator Marty Golden (R-C, Brooklyn). The legislation would appropriate up to $90 million, or as much as is needed, to the Office for People with Developmental Disabilities (OPWDD) to protect providers from funding reductions if recommended savings measures fall short of projections.

“We fought the good fight and we won,” said Senator Felder. “We did not back down. We did not take no for an answer. And we delivered for one of our most vulnerable populations. Restoring this funding was unequivocally the right thing to do, and I am extremely proud to have been part of this effort.”

June 18, 2013
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Senator Tkaczyk co-Sponsor of Legislation Restoring OPWDD Cuts

State Senator Cecilia Tkaczyk, Ranking Member on the Senate Committee on Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities, praised the agreement to restore funding to the Office for People with Developmental Disabilities. She was a co-sponsor of the measure to restore the funds.

“These cuts would have devastated the services that our most vulnerable residents and their families rely on,” Tkaczyk said. “I am proud to have fought for full restoration throughout the budget process, and am thrilled these cuts have finally been restored.”

June 14, 2013
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O'Mara: Reports signal agreement on funding restoration for people with disabilities

Albany, N.Y., June 13—State Senator Tom O’Mara (R-C, Big Flats) released a statement on today’s news reports that the Legislature and Governor Andrew Cuomo are working toward an agreement before the end of the legislative session next week to restore a $90-million cut in funding to the state Office of People with Developmental Disabilities (OPWDD) that was included in this year’s state budget.

June 13, 2013
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