Issues: Cell Phones

Chanukah is the celebration of Miracles!

"Chanukah is the celebration of miracles, a reminder that all things are possible," Senator Parker said.  "As you celebrate the spirit of Chanukah with friends and family, I wish you health, happiness and good fortune." The holiday celebrates a legendary victory of the Maccabees, a band of Jews, over a Greek army that occupied the Holy Land.  After the battle, the victorious Maccabees found only a one day supply of oil in the temple to light the lamps.  But the oil burned miraculously for eight days, the story says.

December 17, 2014

Senator Valesky to Judge CNY Civic App Challenge

Senator David J. Valesky is one of the judges for the AT&T Central New York Civic App Challenge, a two-month virtual hackathon in which developers are encouraged to "Solve Local" by building smartphone apps that serve Central New Yorkers. Winners will receive cash prizes totaling $18,000. The challenge, which will be facilitated by Hack Upstate, was announced September 11 at The Tech Garden and will run until November 11. Coders, designers and technologists can register for the challenge and get more information at

September 11, 2014


ALBANY, NY—State Senator David J. Valesky (D-Oneida) today lauded the passage of the state’s fourth and historic consecutive on-time budget. This has not been accomplished with the same Governor and legislative leaders in more than 40 years.

April 1, 2014


Plans Put on Hold Until 2016

State Senator Patty Ritchie is applauding the New York State Public Service Commission’s decision to put on hold its plans to make changes to the 315 area code. 

Since the PSC’s area code change proposal was announced, Senator Ritchie urged state regulators to put the brakes on its effort to follow through with proposed changes to the 315 area code, which included a plan to split the region in two, or create a confusing “overlay” code (click here to read a copy of Senator Ritchie's letter to the PSC).  In response, the PSC hosted hearings across the region served by the 315 area code.  Hearings on the issue were last held in 2008. 

“Since the proposed changes to the 315 area code were announced, I have heard from hundreds of individuals concerned about how they would be impacted,” said Senator Ritchie.

November 14, 2013

Senator Klein, Assemblyman Dinowitz, Announce New Legislation Aimed at Cracking Down on Black Market for Stolen iPhones

Bronx, NY – Senate Co-Leader Jeff Klein (D-Bronx/Westchester) and Assemblyman Jeff Dinowitz (D-Riverdale), Chair of the Assembly’s Consumer Affairs and Protection Committee, introduced new legislation today aimed at stemming the tide of iPhone thefts across New York City. Over the past several years, iPhone thefts in New York City have soared. Current NYPD statistics show that Apple device thefts are up 10% this year—and with the September release of the new, technologically advanced iPhone 5S, some experts are predicting an even greater increase by year’s end.


October 18, 2013

Monthly Column: Stop unwanted telemarketing calls

By: Michael H. Ranzenhofer


In last month’s column, I shared five helpful tips to protect yourself from identity theft.  Another way to safeguard your privacy is to sign up for the National Do Not Call Registry.  


The National Do Not Call Registry is a service managed by the nation’s consumer protection agency, the Federal Trade Commission.  The agency offers the opportunity to limit the number of telemarketing calls which you receive free of charge.  Registration is free.   


September 18, 2013


Action came in response to request from Senator Ritchie to let area

residents and businesses weigh in on plan

Senator Patty Ritchie announced that the state Public Service Commission has agreed to her request for hearings on its plan to create a new area code for Northern and Central New York communities now served by the 315 area code.

The hearings--including two that will be held in Watertown on August 6th--are being hosted in response to a recent letter Senator Ritchie sent to state regulators, urging them to put the brakes on proposals to split the region in two, or create a confusing “overlay” code. In her letter, Senator Ritchie also requested the PSC hold a new round of public hearings, as the PSC last held hearings on the 315 area code issue in 2008. A copy of the letter can be viewed here.

July 15, 2013


Urges Albany to Find Alternatives to Phone Plan That’s “Ill-Timed” and Unneeded

State Senator Patty Ritchie is urging state regulators to put the brakes on its latest effort to create a new telephone area code for Central and Northern New York, calling current proposals to split the region in two, or create a confusing “overlay” code, “ill-timed” and possibly unnecessary.

The state Public Service Commission is considering plans that would divide the 18-county region into two zones, and impose a new area code on one of them, or “overlay” the new area code across the entire region, and apply it for new numbers only. The latter plan would require residents to dial 10 or 11 digits to complete any calls—local or long distance.

“Considering the state of the region’s economy, local businesses—still recovering from recession—simply cannot afford the additional cost and potential customer loss from this change, and tens of thousands of consumers, who will be forced to dial 10 or 11 digits to reach a nearby town or even their next-door neighbor, should not face this additional inconvenience,” Senator Ritchie said, in a letter she sent to the PSC.

July 8, 2013

Griffo Urges Residents to Contact PSC for Feedback on Possible Changes to 315 Area Code

PSC Surveying Public for Proposals to go into effect 2015

State Senator Joseph A. Griffo (R, C, IP - Rome) is urging Central and Northern New York residents and businesses to contact the State Public Service Commission (PSC) with their opinion of the proposed plans to alter the existing 315 area code because of predictions that the region will exhaust the number of available phone numbers that can be assigned to new customers.

July 6, 2013

Governor Cuomo Signs Senator Marcellino’s Legislation Creating New Penalties for Texting-While-Driving for Young and New Drivers to Protect New Yorkers on The Road

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today signed Senator Marcellino’s legislation that creates new penalties for texting-while-driving for young and new drivers to better protect New Yorkers on the road.

July 2, 2013

Senate Passes Bill to Bring Auto Insurance Proof To Your Smartphone

The New York State Senate passed legislation (S5068A) today, sponsored by Senator Simcha Felder (D, Brooklyn), that would enable drivers to have proof of auto insurance on their smartphones, rather than having to produce a paper insurance card.

June 21, 2013

Senate Passes Bill to Protect Inexperienced Drivers

The New York State Senate today passed a bill to protect young and inexperienced drivers by helping to remove distractions that could lead to accidents.

May 29, 2013

Senator O'Brien fights to curb texting while driving

FAIRPORT AND EAST ROCHESTER, N.Y. -- Today, Senator Ted O’Brien stood with local residents and insurance representatives to promote safe driving through the “X the TXT” initiative, amid recent reports that texting while driving now causes more teen fatalities than drunk driving.

“As a father and a legislator, my top priority is keeping our children safe from harm,” Senator O’Brien said. “Texting while driving is one of the leading easily prevented causes of death among young people today. The ‘X the TXT’ program is a great way to educate our kids about the dangers of texting while driving and help them make good decisions when they’re on the road. I’m proud to support this life-saving initiative.”

May 19, 2013

Department of Financial Services to Speek Resolution of Insurance Claims in Areas Affected by SANDY

The NYS Department of Financial Services (DFS) is setting new rules to speed the processing of insurance claims in areas affected by Storm Sandy. The new regulation reduces the amount of time an insurer can delay its decision on a claim, and requires insurers to report to the Department on how many claims it is delaying and the reasons for the delays.

February 27, 2013

Governor Cuomo Outlines 2013-2014 Executive Budget to Maintain Fiscal Responsibility and Continue to Invest in Economic Growth

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo unveiled the proposed 2013-14Executive Budget and Management Plan that builds on two years of balanced, fiscally responsible budgeting and invests in economic development, education reform, rebuilding after Superstorm Sandy, provides support to local governments and school districts, and includes no new taxes or fees.

Highlights of the Executive Budget:

· Eliminates $1.3 billion budget gap with no new taxes or fees. The expected gap for 2013-14 was projected to be $17.4 billion prior to the last two responsible budgets.

· Holds spending increases below 2 percent for third consecutive year.

January 23, 2013

Schoharie, Delaware First Responders Receive State Grants

NORTH BLENHEIM, 09/19/12 – State Senator James L. Seward (R/C/I–Oneonta) today joined representatives of the New York Power Authority (NYPA) and local officials to present more than $207,000 in grants to nine first-responder organizations in Schoharie and Delaware counties to rebuild equipment and systems capabilities after Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee.  The grants were announced in August by Governor Cuomo, among other state initiatives to aid communities affected by last summer's storms. NYPA today also issued a request for proposals (RFP) to improve cellular and wireless communications at the Blenheim-Gilboa power plant and across the Northern Catskills.

September 20, 2012

Governor Cuomo in Syracuse to Discuss Budget

I was pleased to join Governor Cuomo in discussing budget accomplishments for Central New York. Click the link for more details.

Gov Cuomo CNY Budget Presentation.pdf

April 5, 2012

Senator Gallivan Addresses 2012 State Budget In Video Message

Senator Patrick M. Gallivan (R,C,I - 59th District) speaks to the taxpayers and families of Western New York concerning the just enacted 2012 State Budget.

April 4, 2012

State Passes Fiscally Responsible Budget That Respects Taxpayers

Budget Comes Early, Controls Spending and Holds The Line On Taxes

Senator Patrick M. Gallivan hailed the 2012 state budget today as lawmakers approved the spending plan ahead of the April 1st deadline, marking the second consecutive year New York State will enact an on-time budget.

“Passing a second on-time budget in as many years is indicative of the larger progress we’ve seen lately in Albany. Just as late budgets were once a symbol of dysfunction, on-time budgets are symbolic of continued progress,” the Senator said. “Even more important than passing an on-time budget, is that we passed a fiscally responsible budget that respects New York’s taxpayers and keeps the State moving forward.”

April 3, 2012
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