Andrea Stewart-Cousins's Press releases

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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Urging Additional Help for Yonkers Schools

Legislation Would Account for Increased Enrollment and Pre-Kindergarten Program

(Albany)- Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins (35th District- D/WF/I) is urging passage of two bills that she sponsors in the State Senate, which would provide additional State funding to the Yonkers city schools. The first, S. 1011, would provide the Yonkers City Schools with $4.8 million for the district’s Pre-Kindergarten program, and the second, S. 1012 would provide $3.98 million to address the district’s growth of approximately 1500 students. Both bills passed the Senate last year, but did not become law.

March 23, 2011
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Bill to Allow E-Filing of Real Property Documents Passes Senate

Sponsored By Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins

Improves Government Efficiency; Saves Taxpayer Dollars

(Albany)- The New York State Senate unamimously passed legislation on March 22, sponsored by Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins (35th District- D/WF/I), which would modernize County Clerk offices throughout the State by allowing real property transactions to be filed electronically. Supported by the New York State Association of County Clerks, the bill (S. 2373) would provide filers with the convenient option of submitting real property documents, such as mortgage deeds or easements, online. This would allow County Clerk to operate more efficiently, reduce paper usage; streamline storage and retrieval capabilities and enhance the accuracy and speed of the filing process, all of which will ultimately save taxpayer dollars.

March 23, 2011
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Republican Senate Budget Proposal Slashes Yonkers Education Funding

Senator Stewart-Cousins Sends Letter to Majority Leader Urging Restoration of Funds

(Albany) - Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins spoke on the floor of the Senate yesterday, urging full restoration of Video Lottery Terminal (VLT) Aid to the City of Yonkers. The Republican Senate Budget Resolution, approved yesterday, cut VLT Aid to Yonkers by $15 million, which would have a devastating impact on the Yonkers School District.

March 16, 2011
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Rallying to Restore Education Funding

Keeping Current Surcharge Would Stave off Cuts

(Albany)- Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins (35th District- D/WF/I) rallied to restore proposed State budget cuts to education funding today, joining several of her Democratic colleagues and the Alliance for Quality Education at a press conference in the Capital. The Senator says the cuts, totaling over $1.5 billion, can be restored by continuing the income tax surcharge on individuals netting more than $200,000 per year, and couples netting more than $300,000 per year. The surcharge was signed into law in 2009 and is set to expire on December 31, and it would bring over $4 billion in revenue to the State this fiscal year.

March 9, 2011
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Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins Advocates Redistricting Bill With Mayor Koch

(Albany)- Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins stood with Mayor Ed Koch and several of her legislative colleagues at the Capital today, urging passage of Governor Andrew Cuomo’s redistricting bill. The legislation would create an independent commission to draw legislative districts, which was a major aspect of Mayor Koch’s reform pledge last fall. Senator Stewart-Cousins is designated as a Hero of Reform by Mayor Koch, and promises to fight for passage of the legislation.

March 1, 2011
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Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins Joins Senator Kirsten Gillibrand at Jobs For Veterans Roundtable

(Dobbs Ferry)- Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins took part in Senator Kirsten Gillibrand’s Jobs for Veterans Roundtable Discussion at Mercy College on February 22nd. With the unemployment rate among veterans who served in Iraq and Afghanistan reaching close to 20% nationwide, Senator Kirsten Gillibrand invited Senator Stewart-Cousins, other government leaders, veteran’s advocates, education officials and members of the business community to listen to veterans about the problems they face in the job market, and discuss ways to overcome those barriers.

February 22, 2011
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"Women Working It" Workshop

Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins organized a business workshop for women at the annual Black, Puerto Rican, Hispanic and Asian Legislative Caucus weekend. The workshop presented valuable information from a panel of successful women business owners and government partners about how to get a business off the ground.

February 18, 2011
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Letter to Public Service Commission About Tree Trimming Policies

Thank you for this opportunity to comment on the Public Service Commission (PSC) Staff’s Recommendations regarding Case 10-E-0155. I would also like to thank you for opening this review, and for affording the public a high level of involvement in the process. As stated in my original comments, I recognize that vegetation management practices are necessary to maintain a safe and reliable electric utility system. However, changes to Public Service Commission policies for utility companies engaging in this work are necessary to improve public involvement and reflect greater concern for the environment and quality of life. To that end, it is my belief that the PSC staff’s recommendations do not go far enough in addressing the concerns of affected residents.

February 3, 2011
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Nepperhan Community Center Honors Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins on Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day

(Westchester, NY)- Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins (35th District- D/I/WF)  was honored this morning by the Nepperhan Community Center at their 25th Silver Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Breakfast with the Drum Major for Justice Award. The Senator joined Assemblyman J. Gary Pretlow, Westchester County Board Chairman Ken Jenkins, and Yonkers City Councilwoman Pat McDow as honorees at the annual celebration of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day at the Community Center.

January 18, 2011
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Senate “Heroes of Reform” Say: Keep Your Promise: Pass the Pledge

Senate Reformers Urge New Yorkers to Join the Call for Immediate Action on Mayor Koch’s New York Uprising Heroes of Reform Pledge

(Albany, NY) - On the first day of State Senate session, Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins (35th District – D/I/WF) and Senators designated “Heroes of Reform” by Mayor Ed Koch called on Majority Leader Dean Skelos and Senate leadership today to keep their promise and pass Mayor Koch’s “New York Uprising Heroes of Reform” pledge as the Senate’s first order of business in the New Year.

January 10, 2011
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Senator Stewart-Cousins Appointed to Gov. Cuomo’s Mandate Relief Redesign Team

(Westchester, NY) –  Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins was appointed to Governor Andrew Cuomo’s Mandate Relief Redesign Team, joining a group of twenty three business, government, education and labor leaders from across the State of New York. The Commission, created by Executive Order and announced in Governor Cuomo’s State of the State Address last Wednesday, will explore the numerous unfunded or underfunded state mandates on local governments and school districts and determine which are ineffective, wasteful or outdated. The initial recommendations of the Mandate Relief Redesign Team are due to the Governor by March 1st, 2011, but the Team will continue its review until the end of Fiscal Year 2011- 2012 . 

January 8, 2011
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Wage Theft Prevention Act Signed Into Law

Today, Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins announced Wage Theft Prevention Act (S8380), legislation she co-sponsored in the Senate, has been signed into law by Governor David A. Paterson. This new law will effectively expand workplace rights of employees by requiring employers not only to provide employees with necessary wage information, but put in place sanctions for employers who fail to properly pay their workers full earned wages and overtime.

December 14, 2010
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