State Senator Hugh T. Farley (R, C, I – Schenectady) recently announced the Joint Legislative Hearing Schedule on the 2016-2017 Executive Budget proposal.

Elected officials and community leaders break ground for the new building.

While the city debates the merits of Mayor Bill de Blasio’s controversial affordable housing plan, construction recently got under way for a five-story, 53-unit senior citizen housing complex in Cypress Hills.

Elected officials and community leaders in Cypress Hills gathered for a groundbreaking ceremony in December to mark the start of construction of Cypress Senior Housing Residences at 137 Jamaica Ave.

The New York State Senate today passed legislation that creates new tax incentives designed to encourage charitable giving to schools and improve the quality of education for students. The Education Investment Tax Credit (S1976A), sponsored by Senators Martin Golden (R-C-I, Brooklyn) and Simcha Felder (D, Brooklyn), allows those who make a charitable contribution to public schools, scholarship organizations, or other organizations providing support to public schools to receive a tax credit.

The New York State Senate today passed a bill (S6377), sponsored by Senate Majority Leader John  Flanagan (2nd Senate District), that completely eliminates the Gap Elimination Adjustment (GEA) this year and ends its devastating impact on state funding to public schools. Nearly $434 million in GEA cuts remain for schools in 2016-17 and this proposal would permanently abolish those education budget reductions.

The New York City Department of Sanitation has issued an agency preparedness “Snow Alert” for Tuesday, January 12 at 4 p.m. A snow alert is not a weather forecast, but indicates the potential for winter precipitation. Calling a “Snow Alert” allows DSNY to begin to prepare for a possible response by loading salt spreaders, attaching plows (if necessary), preparing tire chains and notifying other city agencies and supplementary personnel as needed. 

January is National Blood Donor Month. This designation is an opportunity to raise awareness and encourage people to volunteer to help save lives by donating blood. To find a blood drive in your area, visit

Senator Rich Funke today announced his committee assignments for the 2016 Legislative Session, including his new Chairmanship of the Senate Cultural Affairs, Tourism, Parks & Recreation Committee. 

It was great seeing so many familiar faces throughout December. The colorful sights and sounds of the holiday season were in full effect throughout the different communities that I represent. Here are just a few photos where I joined hundreds of community members, friends and colleagues at events spanning all corners of my district - from the Bronx to El Barrio, Central Park to Yorkville, the Upper West Side over to Roosevelt Island. I hope all of you had a joyous holiday season and I hope to see you soon!