ALBANY, 05/24/11 – State Senator James L. Seward (R/C/I – Oneonta) today announced he is co-sponsoring legislation that would give local governments veto power over natural gas drilling through zoning authority.
“The topic of drilling in the Marcellus Shale has elicited an overwhelming response with varied opinions on all sides of the issue. One thing that cannot be discounted moving forward is the desire of local residents,” said Senator Seward. “That is why I am co-sponsoring legislation (S.3472) that would empower local governments and allow them to regulate natural gas drilling through local planning and zoning.”
"Western New York’s property tax burden is among the highest in the nation; forcing families to leave their homes, business to relocate, and our children to seek futures elsewhere. Passing legislation to cap property taxes at two-percent was one of the first actions my Senate colleagues and I took this year.
Now, nearly four months later, the Assembly has joined the discussion by agreeing to a property tax cap framework largely mirroring legislation passed earlier this year in the Senate. This is a very encouraging development.
Queens, NY – Senator Michael Gianaris is fighting against the closure of Ladder 128, a fire company located in Long Island City, Queens at 33-51 Greenpoint Avenue. This fire company recently celebrated its 100th Anniversary and serves the neighborhoods of Sunnyside, Woodside, Long Island City and Greenpoint.
Mayor Bloomberg has announced that he is planning on closing 20 fire companies across New York City. Ladder 128 is one of four fire companies in Queens marked for closure.
Sunnyside Post asked Senator Gianaris to comment on the possible closure of Ladder 128.
Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s proposal to close as many as 20 firehouses – including one in Long Island City—has drawn the scorn of many of this district’s politicians.
Ladder Company 128, which serves Sunnyside, Woodside, LIC, Blissville and Greenpoint, is among those firehouses that face the chopping block.
State Sen. Mike Gianaris said that “the closure of ladder company 128 would increase response times and would have a detrimental effect on the safety of people in western queens.” Gianaris added that the closure made little sense at a time when the area is expanding and developers are building more high-rise buildings.
From the New Hyde Park Illustrated News, an Anton Community Newspaper
Members of the volunteer fire services are used to coming to the aid of others. Knowing the value of volunteer firefighters in Nassau County communities, New York State Senator Jack M. Martins was glad to help one of the members of New Hyde Park’s Fire Department’s bravest.
Last Feb. 4, members of the New Hyde Park Fire Department responded to a fire in the basement of a home on 6th Avenue in New Hyde Park. Several firefighters were injured fighting the blaze including Max Devane, who was taken to the hospital in critical condition.
Injured firefighter Max Devane has a chance to thank New York State Senator Jack Martins for helping him receive his SUNY Maritime deposit.
Senator Jack M. Martins was back in Floral Park as part of his community listening tour. The Floral Park Library was the scene for the latest installment of Martins’ community-based listening sessions where residents can discuss issues, concerns and ideas in a free-flowing discussion. The Floral Park session saw a steady stream of community members drop by to talk to the Senator. “I was very pleased with the turn-out and happy with the thoughtfulness of the questions and discussion surrounding the issues,” said Senator Martins.
Senator Jack M. Martins was welcomed by the Great Neck Chamber of Commerce at recent Thursday morning breakfast meeting at the Inn of Great Neck, where he answered numerous questions from chamber members.
Having taken office as Senator of the Seventh Senate District this past January, Martins is making his way around the district on days he isn’t in Albany to discuss both local and state issues with the residents, elected officials and businesses owners of the community.
Senator Martins was introduced by Great Neck Chamber of Commerce President Valerie Link of Anton Community Newspapers. He kept his initial comments brief, speaking about the importance of local governments such as villages, so that chamber members would have the opportunity to ask questions.
Senator Jack M. Martins and his Senate colleagues from Long Island made a push to get the Assembly to pass a 2 percent tax cap as a means to bring property tax relief to Long Island families at a press conference on Thursday. Governor Andrew Cuomo has been a proponent of the cap, which was already passed by the Senate. The bill just needs approval from the Assembly to become law.
In just a few months in Albany, we have made considerable progress in getting New York State back on track. When the Assembly, Senate and Governor have worked together toward a common goal, we have seen that we are capable of making significant improvements in our State. This was the case in March when the Senate worked with the Governor on a state budget. Not only was this highly complex and contentious process completed on time, but more significantly, it represented a change from past practices that have repeatedly failed the residents of New York. We were able to successfully balance the State budget and close a $10 billion deficit while not raising any taxes or fees.
Bill Makes Killing Emergency Responders 1st Degree Murder
State Senator Patty Ritchie has introduced “Mark’s Law,” a bill to make the killing of emergency first responders first degree murder, punishable by the stiffest penalty allowed by law - life without parole.
The bill, S 4717, was introduced in memory of Mark Davis, the emergency medical technician who was shot to death while responding to a call for help in Cape Vincent on January 30, 2009.
In his latest legislative report from Albany, Senator Jack M. Martins discusses a recent hearing on the MTA finances as well as a visit to the Henry Viscardi School and his participation in an economic development forum in Elmont.
State Senator Patty Ritchie announced the Senate passed a bill (S4415) she sponsored to allow Jefferson County’s District Attorney to appoint, as needed, a stenographer who lives in St. Lawrence County or any county in the fifth judicial district.
"When Jefferson County District Attorney Cindy Intschert told me she needed my help, I made sure we got this bill moving through the Senate," Senator Ritchie said. "It is critical that our prosecutors have the resources they need."
Tug Hill Staff Explains Its Role To SAGE Commission Member
Senator Patty Ritchie met with Hudson Valley Senator Greg Ball and representatives of the Tug Hill Commission in Albany Monday. Senator Ritchie arranged the meeting to allow Tug Hill officials to make their case before Senator Ball, who is a member of Governor Andrew Cuomo's Spending and Government Efficiency (SAGE) Commission, charged with slashing state agencies and authorities that are redundant or unnecessary. Senator Ritchie and her Central and Northern New York colleagues have been arguing that the Tug Hill Commission serves a vital purpose in helping local governments deal with state issues--at no expense to local taxpayers.
As we head into the summer, we are still hard at work in Albany. We must continue to build on the momentum we’ve established since March when the Senate, Governor and Assembly worked together to pass an historic budget that closed a $10 billion budget gap without raising any taxes or fees. It represented a major change from how Albany has conducted business in recent years when the state routinely outspent its revenues and then relied on taxpayers to close the deficits with tax increases. This represents a new era in state government – one of fiscal responsibility.