Statement by Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos

I was pleased to meet with Mayor Koch today on the issue of independent redistricting.  I expressed to him my concerns about the Koch-endorsed bill that would weight the redistricting process in favor of Democrats by a six to two margin.   Several different redistricting reform bills have been proposed.  We are still reviewing constitutional concerns that we have with the bill submitted by the Governor.  It is our intention to pursue a redistricting reform measure that will meet the NY Uprising pledge.  

March 1, 2011

Senate Forecasts $415 Million in Additional State Revenues

Funds Should Be Used For Tax Relief or State Reserves – Not New Spending

February 28, 2011

Statement by Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos

The issue of redistricting reform is an important one and I have said repeatedly that we will act on reform legislation.  A number of proposals have been advanced and we have to take a close look at what makes the most sense to ensure a fair, open and truly nonpartisan process. Cutting government spending, reducing taxes, providing property tax relief and creating private sector jobs are critically important issues that impact every family and business in this state.  That’s why our focus right now must be on getting a fiscally responsible budget enacted by April 1st, which is just 43 days away.  

February 17, 2011

Senate Passes Anti-Crime Bills

The New York State Senate today passed a package of bills that would strengthen laws and toughen criminal penalties for certain sex offenses related to rape and  child pornography.  In addition, bills were passed to expand information on criminal background checks for individuals applying for employment in law enforcement and increasing penalties for the crime of criminally negligent homicide.            Legislation (S.1826), sponsored by Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos (R-C, Rockville Centre), would require consecutive prison sentences for each separate act of rape when an individual is convicted of multiple counts.

February 14, 2011

Lifesaving Legislation Receives Senate Approval

The New York State Senate today passed potentially lifesaving legislation (S.2387) that would allow emergency medical technicians (EMTs) to carry an automated external defibrillator (AED) in their personal vehicles. “Clearing the way for trained first responders to carry AEDs at all times could be the difference between life and death for a heart attack patient,” Senator James L. Seward (R/C/I-Oneonta), Chairman of the Senate Insurance Committee said.  “By cutting away bureaucratic red-tape and ensuring trained emergency professionals have the tools they need lives can be saved.” Current law does not permit EMTs to possess and use AEDs while they are off-duty, unless they are specifically licensed as a public access defibrillator provider.  

February 14, 2011

Skelos and Silver announce Joint Legislative Budget Schedule

Senate Majority Leader Dean G. Skelos and Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver today announced an agreement on a joint legislative budget schedule that sets out deadlines the Legislature will adhere to in order to achieve an on-time budget for New York State.“I am pleased that we are returning to the joint, public budget negotiation process that is set in law,” said Skelos. “This model resulted in passage of an on-time budget in 2008 and I’m hopeful it will help us enact a budget by April 1 that meets the fiscal challenges we face and addresses the needs of the people.”  “The Legislature has already moved forward with an aggressive schedule of joint public hearings on the governor’s proposed budget.

February 10, 2011

Senate Passes Mandate Relief Legislation

The New York State Senate today  passed three mandate relief bills that would give local governments more authority and flexibility and help save taxpayer dollars. “As the Senate works to enact a property tax cap, it’s important that we also pass mandate relief measures to give municipalities the ability to allocate resources on community priorities, rather than to address state mandates that may not be needed,” Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos said.  “The bills we passed today are simple, common sense legislation to save money.”

February 7, 2011

Statement by Senator Skelos on Governor Cuomo's Budget Presentation

I applaud Governor Cuomo for keeping his commitments to reduce spending and to not raise taxes. The state simply cannot continue to put off the spending reductions that are necessary to close the deficit.  All levels of government need to understand that they have to do more with less. By making the tough decisions now, we can reform the way government operates and make New York a place where businesses want to stay, grow and create new private sector jobs.  While there are still more budget details yet to come related to school aid, Medicaid reforms, government consolidation and changes to our corrections system, I hope everyone involved can work together in an open, public process and get a budget done on time.

February 1, 2011

Senate Passes Property Tax Cap Legislation

The New York State Senate today passed property tax relief legislation (S.2706) that would place a cap on the growth of school property taxes at two percent or the Consumer Price Index (CPI), whichever is less. If enacted, New York would become the 44th state to cap local property taxes.  In addition, the Senate approved two measures related to providing mandate relief to school districts and local governments.

January 31, 2011

Senate Passes Job Creation and Taxpayer Protection Act of 2011

The New York State Senate today passed the Job Creation and Taxpayer Protection Act of 2011, a three-part plan to encourage the creation of new private sector jobs and ensure fiscal responsibility, including the enactment of a two percent state spending cap and requiring a two-thirds “super majority” vote to increase taxes.“The people have spoken loud and clear that they want the state to cut spending, stop runaway tax increases and get off businesses’ backs and out of their wallets so they can create new jobs,” Senate Majority Leader Dean G.

January 19, 2011

All Senators And Staff To Take Ethics Training

New York Senate Majority Leader Dean G. Skelos today announced that he will require all Senators and Senate staff to participate in ethics training in conjunction with the Legislative Ethics Commission.  The training will have to be completed by all Senators and Senate employees by April 1, 2011."I'm confident that we have built a top-notch team in the State Senate that will work directly with the members of this body to achieve great things for New York, including lower taxes and spending, and more good-paying private sector jobs,” Senator Skelos said.

January 11, 2011

Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos Appoints Senator John Defrancisco To Chair Senate Finance Committee - Senate Majority Members Named to Finance and Rules Committees

Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos has appointed Senator John A. DeFrancisco (R-I-C, Syracuse) to serve as Chairman of the Senate Finance Committee.

“I am honored that I have been named Chairman of the Senate Finance Committee,” said Senator DeFrancisco.  “This is a very important position in the Senate and for our State, given the fiscal crisis our State is facing.   I am anxious and excited to begin the hard work that is needed to remedy our State’s financial situation. I am looking forward to working with Governor Cuomo toward the passage of a budget that serves the interests of all New Yorkers.”

January 6, 2011

Senator Skelos Announces Frank Patience Will Serve As Secretary Of The Senate

New York State Senate Republican Leader Dean Skelos today announced that Francis W. Patience will serve as Secretary of the Senate.  He will be officially nominated for a two-year term as part of the formal Senate reorganization which will take place later today.

“Frank Patience has proven himself to be a skilled administrator who will be an asset to every member of the New York State Senate.  Frank is already hard at work ensuring a smooth Senate transition, and I look forward to his continued leadership on this and many other issues related to the nonpartisan administration of our chamber,” Senator Skelos said.

January 5, 2011

A Message From Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos

To All New Yorkers,


Welcome to the official web site of the New York State Senate. The new year of 2011 brings important changes and challenges to our State government, and to the State of New York as a whole. 

The members of  the State Senate will be working closely with our new Governor Andrew Cuomo and the members of the New York State Assembly to meet the significant challenges that lie ahead.

The people’s priorities must be our priorities.  That means balancing the state budget, closing the deficit, easing the burden on taxpayers, and doing everything we can to strengthen our economy and create private sector jobs.

January 4, 2011