Newsroom

Senate Passes Bill Ensuring Prompt Delivery of Tax Refunds

The New York State Senate today passed legislation, (S.3047) sponsored by Senator Carl L. Marcellino (R, Syosset),  that would ensure timely payment of state income tax refunds. The bill requires the state to pay tax refunds within 30 days of the receipt of a taxpayer’s return, unless there is a discrepancy in the return.   “If taxpayers who  do the right thing and file on time, the state should do the right thing and  get the refunds out the door in a timely fashion,” said Senator Marcellino. “It shouldn’t take up to eight weeks to get your money back.  I think the state can do better and this legislation would make sure that they do.”

March 13, 2013
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Senate Passes Bill to Expand Renewable Energy Technology Use

The New York State Senate today passed legislation sponsored by Senator George D. Maziarz (R-C, Newfane) that would help encourage the installation of renewable energy technologies by making them more cost efficient and accessible.  The bill (S1111) would add solar, wind, fuel cells, micro-hydro-electric, farm-based biogas and residential Micro Combined Heat and Power (micro-CHP) to current state financing initiatives that help make energy efficiency upgrades more attractive to potential consumers, reduce fossil fuel consumption, and support job growth in the clean energy sector.

March 12, 2013
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Senate Bill Targets Prescription Black Market

The New York State Senate today acted on legislation that would crack down on the growing black market in non-controlled prescription drugs which puts patients at risk and rips off taxpayers through Medicaid fraud.  Legislation (S.2942) sponsored by Senator Kemp Hannon (R-C-I, Garden City) makes it a crime to fraudulently prescribe, buy, and sell these types of medications.

March 12, 2013
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Senate Passes 2013-14 Budget Resolution

The New York State Senate today approved a 2013-14 budget resolution, proposed by the Senate Majority Coalition, that focuses on helping businesses create new jobs, investing additional funds in education and transportation, providing mandate relief to local governments, and restoring proposed cuts to women’s health programs as well programs for the developmentally disabled.  The budget also includes a proposal for a permanent two-percent state spending cap.

March 11, 2013
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Senate Republicans Will Act to Restore Millions of Dollars Cut From Women's Health Programs in Governor's Budget

Senate Republicans today announced they would restore millions of dollars for important women’s health programs - - including initiatives to help women overcome the trauma of rape, eating disorders and breast cancer- - that were targeted for reduction as part of the Governor’s Executive Budget. Approximately $8 million in cuts in these areas were rejected as part of the Senate’s one-house budget plan, which was expected to be acted on later today. Under the Executive Budget proposal, the Governor recommended shifting funding for 16 women’s health and wellness programs into six discretionary “pools,” and then subjected those “pools” to a 10 percent, across-the-board cut.

March 11, 2013
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Senate Republican Blueprint for Jobs: ReThink. ReVitalize. ReBuild.

Senate Republican Conference Leader Dean Skelos and members of the Senate Republican conference today announced a bold and sweeping job creation plan to improve New York’s business climate so it not only keeps up with other states, but surpasses them.

March 8, 2013
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Statement by Senate Republican Conference Leader Dean Skelos

A report issued today by the State Department of Labor highlights the steady, bipartisan progress we’ve made with Governor Cuomo in controlling spending and taxes, creating new private sector jobs and turning New York’s economy around.                                                

March 7, 2013
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Senate Passes the Trafficking Victims Protection and Justice Act

The New York State Senate today passed the “Trafficking Victims Protection and Justice Act” to further protect trafficked children and other victims, and punish the criminals who are responsible for sexual exploitation.

March 6, 2013
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Senate Approves Mixed Martial Arts Legislation

The New York State Senate today passed legislation to legalize and regulate mixed martial arts (MMA) competitions in New York State.

March 6, 2013
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Statement by Senate Republican Conference Leader Dean Skelos

Today, the Assembly once again advanced legislation to increase the minimum wage in New York State, this time proposing a hike to a full $9.

March 5, 2013
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Senate Acts to Keep Communities Safer From Sexual Predators

The New York State Senate today passed four bills that would keep communities safer from sexual predators. The package of legislation requires more stringent verification requirements for sex offender residency, and strengthens penalties for individuals who help sex offenders evade registration requirements.

March 5, 2013
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Senate Republicans Unveil "Grown in New York" to Strengthen Agriculture and Family Farms

Growing the state’s agriculture industry and helping New York’s family farms prosper is the goal of the “Grown in New York” plan, unveiled today by Senator Patty Ritchie, Chair of the Senate Agriculture Committee.  Senator Ritchie was joined at a Capitol news conference by other members of the committee, as well as leaders of the New York Farm Bureau to announce a plan to strengthen the state’s $5.2 billion agriculture industry by expanding markets for New York-grown products, improving the bottom lines of family farms, and investing in the future of farming.

March 5, 2013
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Senate Passes Bill to Keep Dangerous Criminals Off School Buses

The New York State Senate today passed legislation to protect children by preventing people who have been convicted of crimes involving children, sexual-based offenses, and drug offenses from being a school bus monitor. The bill (S883), sponsored by Senator John Bonacic (R,C,I-Mount Hope), also updates existing laws to include Leandra’s Law convictions in disqualifying a person from being a school bus driver for five years after conviction.

March 4, 2013
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Senate Republicans Unveil Family Tax Relief Act

Senate Republican Leader Dean Skelos and members of the Senate Republican Conference today unveiled the Family Tax Relief Act, a package of tax relief and reform measures designed to provide a major economic boost to New York’s struggling middle class families.   The Senate Republican plan would increase tax breaks that have not kept pace with inflation, and, in some instances, haven’t been adjusted for more than 25 years.  The plan also restores the STAR property tax rebate check program to provide real and direct relief to millions of New Yorkers who pay some of the highest property taxes in the country.

March 4, 2013
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Senate Forecasts $242 Million in Additional State Revenues

Senate Republican Leader Dean G. Skelos and Senate Independent Conference Leader Jeff Klein today released a revenue forecast by the Senate Finance Committee that estimates additional General Fund revenues, above the Executive’s projection, of $126 million in 2013-14, and  $116 million more than the Executive’s estimate for state fiscal year 2012-13.  The revenue projection, based on an economic forecast by the Senate’s nationally recognized fiscal consultants, IHS Global Insight, shows that the total two-year General Fund revenue surplus is $242 million. 

February 28, 2013
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Senate Republicans Call For Immediate Audit of State's Medicaid Program, Announce Senate Roundtable to Investigate Allegations of "Complacent" OMIG

Senate Republican Leader Dean Skelos and the Senate Republican Conference today called for an immediate independent audit of New York State’s Medicaid program and announced a forthcoming joint roundtable meeting of the Senate Health and Investigations Committees to investigate allegations of complacency and inaction by the state Office of the Medicaid Inspector General (OMIG).    In addition, Senate Republicans will work to establish a system to continually monitor and evaluate the state’s Medicaid program to ensure it is working to provide health care to those who truly need it while protecting taxpayer dollars. The system will be modeled on the strategy utilized in South Carolina to gauge the effectiveness and performance of that state’s Medicaid program.

February 22, 2013
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Statement From Senate Republican Leader Dean Skelos

Two years ago, Democrats and Republicans laid aside their differences and enacted a property tax cap that finally put the brakes on rising property taxes in New York. 

Passage of the property tax cap, a long-held Senate GOP priority, sent an unmistakable message to New Yorkers who were drowning in property taxes and finding it difficult to pay their bills.  And, it served notice to the old voices of the Albany status quo, whose answer to everything was always to spend more and tax more.

While it’s clear that this lawsuit has no merit, Senate Republicans are determined to protect the property tax cap for New Yorkers and their families.

February 20, 2013
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Statement by Senate Republican Leader Dean Skelos

I am disappointed that Governor Cuomo did not remove the 18-a energy tax when he submitted his 21-day amendments to the Executive Budget, as recommended on numerous occasions by Senate Republicans.  The business community has said that this onerous tax costs New York's businesses and families $509 million annually and will hurt our efforts to create jobs and revitalize the state's economy.                        

February 13, 2013
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Senate Passes Bills to Promote Bus Passenger Safety

The New York State Senate today passed two bills that would enhance the safety of bus passengers by preventing registered sex offenders from becoming bus drivers and increasing penalties for passing a stopped school bus.Legislation (

February 11, 2013
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Senate Passes Tiffany's Law

The New York State Senate today passed “Tiffany’s Law”, sponsored by Senator John A. DeFrancisco (R-C-I, Syracuse). The bill (S.1790) would require all prior convictions of operating a vehicle while intoxicated, whether it be an automobile (DWI), snowmobile (SWI), or all-terrain vehicle, to be considered during sentencing of a subsequent Boating While Intoxicated (BWI) conviction. In turn, any person convicted of BWI would have that charge considered during any subsequent DWI, SWI or ATV offense.

February 11, 2013
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