Andrea Stewart-Cousins's Press releases

In Journal News Editorial Board Interview, Senator Calls for Action On Reproductive Health Act "Sooner Rather Than Later"

In an extensive interview with the Journal News Editorial Board, Senator Stewart-Cousins discussed the importance of passing the provisions of the Reproductive Health Act in New York State this year. Tracey Brooks, the President and CEO of Family Planning Advocates, also took part in the hour-long interview.

March 4, 2013
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Senator Stewart-Cousins Submits Comments to Moreland Commission on Con Edison’s Response to Sandy

Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins submitted comments to Governor Cuomo’s Moreland Commission on Utility Storm Preparation and Response. Her comments cited the company’s lack of communication with its customers, elected officials and internally between employees and the need for Con Ed to rethink its priorities with regard to vulnerable populations (such as senior citizens and the disabled), residents of Westchester and it’s smaller villages and towns.

February 11, 2013
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Statement on Tragedy in Newtown, CT

"I cannot imagine the overwhelming grief that families, staff and the community of Sandy Hook Elementary School are enduring as a result of this horrific tragedy. As our nation prayerfully pauses to grieve, we ask how and why an unspeakable tragedy of this magnitude occurred. While we seek the answers, we must resolve in the memory of these latest victims, to do what's necessary to stem gun violence including, as needed, the passage of tough, common sense gun laws."

December 14, 2012
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Federal Grant Will Help NY Rebuild After Sandy and Provide Jobs to Unemployed

In the wake of the devastation caused by Hurricane Sandy, Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins announced that New York has received $27.7 million from the federal government to put 5,000 unemployed New Yorkers to work cleaning up communities impacted by the storm. The funding came from a National Emergency Grant and will be administered by the New York State Department of Labor (DOL). The DOL will work with local communities to identify potential workers for this program.

December 14, 2012
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Senator's Mandate Relief Bill Signed Into Law

A mandate relief bill sponsored by Senator Stewart-Cousins and Assemblyman George Latimer was signed into law by Governor Cuomo. Senate bill 6634-A/Assembly bill 9570-A will allow local governments more flexibility with financing and save taxpayer dollars.

"This new law gives local governments around New York State more flexibility to deal with their expenses," said Senator Stewart-Cousins, ranking member of the Senate Local Government Committee. "Many cash-strapped municipalities are struggling with budget deficits and this bill will allow them to save money and help cover the costs of government without passing the burden on to the taxpayers."

July 30, 2012
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Mandate Relief Bill Sponsored By Senator Stewart-Cousins Approved by Senate

Saves Taxpayer Money and Increases Flexibility for Local Governments

(Albany) - A mandate relief bill sponsored by Senator Stewart-Cousins was approved by the State Senate Wednesday. Senate bill 6634A would extend the repayment terms of short term loans issued to local governments in 2007 and 2008 -- the beginning of the economic downturn. The repayment terms would be extended from five to seven years, which will save local governments hundreds of thousands of dollars over the two year period.

May 31, 2012
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Senate Approves Measure to Improve Oversight of Facilities Serving People with Special Needs

State Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins (D/I/WF – 35th District) voted in favor of Senate bill 7400, which creates a new state investigative and oversight agency known as the Justice Center for the Protection of People with Special Needs. The Center would be responsible for ensuring that individuals served by residential facilities and day programs operated, licensed, or certified by six state agencies are protected from abuse or neglect.

May 25, 2012
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New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services Commits $150,000 to Yonkers SNUG Program

(Yonkers) - A successful violence prevention program in Yonkers received welcome news from the State today. At a press conference, Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins (D/WF/I – 35th District) announced that the Yonkers Family YMCA will receive $150,000 from the New York State Department of Criminal Justice Services to keep Project SNUG running in Yonkers. The program was in jeopardy of shutting down this year due to lack of funding but has been credited by the Yonkers Police Department with helping to reduce shootings in the city by 39%.

Senator Stewart-Cousins, who initially brought Project SNUG to Yonkers, was joined at the press conference by Yonkers Police Commissioner Edmund Hartnett, YMCA Executive Director Shawyn Howard and the Yonkers SNUG workers.

November 15, 2011
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Ballot Marking Devices Help Voters with Disabilities Cast Their Ballots

As Election Day approaches, Senator Stewart-Cousins is reminding registered New Yorkers to vote. And with the new paper ballot system, the Senator and the Westchester Independent Living Center are raising awareness about the Ballot Marking Device (BMD), which helps voters with disabilities privately and independently cast their ballots.

November 2, 2011
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Senator Stewart-Cousins Calls For Mass Transit on Tappan Zee Bridge Replacement

(Tarrytown) - Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins (D/WF/ I – 35th District) is calling on Federal and State officials to include mass transit options in plans to rebuild the Tappan Zee Bridge. This comes in the wake of President Obama’s selection of the 3 mile Hudson River crossing as one of fourteen nationwide infrastructure projects to receive expedited federal review and approval. Her statement is below.

October 20, 2011
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Senator Stewart-Cousins Praises Decision to Expedite Tappan Zee Bridge Project

(Tarrytown) - Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins (D/WF/ I – 35th District) praised President Obama for selecting the Tappan Zee Bridge as one of fourteen infrastructure projects nationwide for expedited federal review and approval. She also thanked Governor Cuomo for advocating the need for this project to the Federal Government. Her statement is below.

October 11, 2011
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Statement on Passage of Marriage Equality

The New York State Legislature approved an historic marriage equality bill that will allow gay and lesbian couples to marry in the State of New York. Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins (D/I/WF- 35th District), who voted in favor of the bill, released this statement:

"This is an historic day for New Yorkers. As the world watched, the legislature took a stand and declared that discrimination is not acceptable in any form to any person or group. Tomorrow, same sex couples will wake up knowing that this government recognizes them as equal citizens of New York and they can take comfort in the fact that their right to a civil marriage in New York State will be granted.

"Civil marriage is a relationship sanctioned and licensed by the State and it provides protections, rights, responsibilities, obligations and benefits that gay couples have the same right to enjoy as different sex couples. It is important to note that this bill includes strong religious exemptions to respect the beliefs of clergy and religious organizations.

"I was proud to support marriage equality because loving and willing gay couples deserve the freedom to get married. Once again, New York has shown itself to be a leader in advancing the cause of freedom and equality to all people"

June 24, 2011
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Bill to Provide Budget Relief for School Districts Passes Senate

Allows Financing of Teacher Pension Costs; Yonkers will Save $4.9 million

The New York State Senate passed legislation (S. 4067-A) today that would allow school districts throughout New York to finance their teacher pension costs, a process called "amortization". Under current law, school districts must pay contributions to the New York State Teacher Retirement System in one lump sum. This bill permits districts to issue bonds to cover these costs, which allows them to make payments over time and provides much-needed cash to struggling school districts.

June 24, 2011
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Senator Stewart-Cousins and Assemblyman Pretlow Pass Legislation to Save Money for Westchester Taxpayers

(Albany) – The New York State Legislature passed legislation, sponsored by Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins (D/I/WF- 35th District) and Assemblyman Gary Pretlow (D- 87th District), which allows Westchester County to finance their 2010 Early Retirement Incentive payments. This will provide immediate relief to the county budget and save taxpayer dollars in the long term.

June 24, 2011
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Senator Stewart-Cousins Inducts Pleasantville Native into New York State Senate Veterans Hall of Fame

Colonel Theresa Mercado- Sconzo Sent to Abu Ghraib to Restore Honor to United States After Prisoner Abuse Scandal

(Albany)- Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins (D/I/WF- 35th District) inducted Colonel Theresa Mercado-Sconzo (United State Army Nursing Corp) into the New York State Senate Veteran’s Hall of Fame at a ceremony today in Albany. Colonel Mercado-Sconzo, of Pleasantville, NY, was deployed to Abu Ghraib prison in March of 2005 to serve as officer in charge of the detainee camps and emergency room shortly after the prisoner abuse and torture scandal was exposed.

June 14, 2011
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Statement on Passage of Historic Ethics Legislation

“This ethics bill is a victory for the people of New York who for years have been calling on Albany to reform the way it does business. When I came to the Senate in 2007, I pledged to restore integrity to the Capital, and this bill takes a meaningful step toward doing just that. By strengthening campaign finance laws, requiring greater disclosure of income, placing new restrictions on lobbyists, and requiring corrupt public officials to forfeit their pensions, we are making New York’s government more fair and accountable to the people it serves. While this legislation is not perfect, I am pleased that it moves our State forward to a more transparent and responsible system of government.”

June 14, 2011
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Senator Stewart-Cousins Announces Legislation to Bar Discrimination Against Unemployed

Bill Would Level the Playing Field for Unemployed Job Seekers

(Yonkers)- Today, Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins (35th District- D/WF/I) announced at a press conference in her district office, the introduction of Senate bill 5316. The bill would make the unemployed a "protected class" in New York and make it illegal for employers to deny out-of-work applicants an interview or position solely because they are jobless. It would also prohibit employers from posting job advertisements that discourage the unemployed from applying to vacant positions.

The bill is co-sponsored in the Assembly by Assemblyman Keith Wright.

May 19, 2011
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Senator Stewart-Cousins Proposes Dissolving 118 Defunct Public Authorities

Legislation Cuts Wasteful Government Agencies and Increases Efficiency

(Albany)- Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins (35th District- D/WF/I), ranking member of the Senate’s Local Government Committee, is urging passage of legislation (S.2845), which she sponsors, that would eliminate 118 inactive or defunct public authorities and agencies around the state.

May 4, 2011
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Senator Stewart-Cousins Unveils Mandate Relief Package

Bills Aim to Provide Cost-Savings to Local Governments and Taxpayers

(Albany)- State Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins (D/I/WF – 35th District), Ranking Minority Member of the Local Government Committee and Member of the Governor’s Mandate Relief Redesign Team, announced the introduction of five measures and passage of one bill to provide localities with mandate relief which will result in cost savings to taxpayers.

April 11, 2011
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Statement on Passing of Geraldine Ferraro

Geraldine Ferraro was one of my earliest inspirations, and an inspiration for all women in politics. Like Shirley Chisholm, she went boldly into a male dominated national arena and weathered political storms, and even defeat, with grace and resolve. I will always remember her campaigning with me during my 2006 Senate race. The people loved her and respected all that she represented. She will be profoundly missed

March 26, 2011
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