STATE SENATE PASSES BUDGET BILLS
State Senator John Bonacic (R/C/I – Mt. Hope), today announced passage of three State budget bills. The Senate is in session on Sunday to take up legislation relating to:
State Capital Projects (S.2604E);
Public Protection and General Government (S.2605D);
Transportation, Economic Development, Housing, and Environmental Conservation (S.2608D).
The State budget consists of ten different pieces of legislation (Senate Bills 2600-2609). So far, four of the bills have passed the Senate (2602A, 2604E, 2605D, and 2608D). The Assembly has passed one of the companion bills (A3002A, a “same as” of S.2602A). The Assembly is expected to return on Thursday to take up other bills. The Senate tentatively plans to complete passage of the remaining budget bills on and by Wednesday.
“The Senate is taking steps to pass a balanced budget. Today we finalized agreement on the State’s capital transportation plan. I am particularly pleased that we are able to provide an increase in CHIPS aid (highway funding), totaling $75 million, for our local communities. This is the first increase in CHIPS aid in five years. I know our local Highway Superintendents and DPW workers use the funding efficiently for needed improvements,” Senator Bonacic said.
Part of one of the budget bills passed by the Senate today (S.2605D), allows retired police officers to be hired as school resource officers waiving Section 211 of the Retirement and Social Security Law to allow such hires. Section 211 of the Retirement and Social Security Law currently limits a retirees’ ability to be re-hired by public entities and earn more than $30,000 a year.
“Police officers can typically retire at a young age – sometimes as early as 41 or 42. Encouraging retired police officers to come back and serve – at a salary somewhat higher than $30,000, but less than a full time officer’s salary, can keep our schools safer and keep make it more affordable for taxpayers,” Senator Bonacic said.
“Thanks to Governor Cuomo and bi-partisan leadership in the State Senate, we have developed a mechanism to adopt balanced, on-time budgets. For too long New York did not function legislatively the way it should. We will have three years in a row of balanced, on-time budgets. There are no congratulations due or sought for that. It is our job. We need to continue that trend and never go back. It would be my hope that the type of bi-partisan partnership we are seeing here in Albany could be emulated in Washington. Nobody is 100% happy with any State budget, but we will continue to press for a bi-partisan approach to governing, with results that serve the people,” Senator Bonacic concluded.