Andrea Stewart-Cousins

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Comptroller DiNapoli Concedes These Are Tough Times for Local Governments and School Districts (Source: Scarsdale10583.com)

Source: Scarsdale10583.com

Meanwhile, State Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins just announced the passage of a bill in the state senate requiring the state to pay for unfunded mandates.

The bill requires the state to fund any mandated program imposed on local governments and school districts and would protect local municipalities from bearing the cost of programs created and/ or originated by the State, allowing local officials to set their own priorities without the possibility of future unfunded mandated programs disrupting their budgets.

June 17, 2013
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Happy Father's Day!

On Father's Day, we recognize the special influence our Dads and father figures have on our growth and lives. A heartfelt thank you to the Dads and father figures who stand by us through thick and thin and whose unconditional love is felt every day. Happy Father's Day!

June 16, 2013
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Closed Sentencing Loophole for Repeat Sexual Abusers

A bill designed to close a loophole in the sentencing law for persistent sexual abusers has passed the senate. Sexual abuse is a serious crime that deserves serious consequences. When persistent sexual abusers fall through criminal loopholes it puts all New Yorkers at risk for harm and this bill was created to prevent that.

June 15, 2013
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Straightforward Tax Relief Applications for Senior Citizens

A simplified application process for senior citizens seeking the enhanced school tax relief exemption has been announced. Many of New York’s senior citizens live on a fixed-income and rely on their tax exempt status to afford their cost of living. Under current law, senior citizens applying for tax exemption status must complete the full STAR form every year, a long and complicated process, even if their eligibility information remains the same as in the previous year. Senate Bill S.2937 will require the tax commissioner to

June 15, 2013
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28th Annual Yonkers Ukrainian Heritage Festival

Leader Stewart-Cousins with constituents celebrating Ukrainian heritage with "food, fun, thrills and performers" at the 28th Annual Yonkers Ukrainian Festival on June 14th on N Broadway & Shonnard Pl in Yonkers, NY.

June 15, 2013
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In-State Tuition Rates For All Veterans

A legislation was announced today allowing all veterans to pay the lower in-state tuition rates offered at state funded universities and community colleges regardless of their official state of residence. Senate Bill S.1978 would entitle all eligible veterans of the Armed Forces to pay the reduced college tuition fees that are already available to New York residents only.

June 13, 2013
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Greater Tax Deductions for K-12 Teachers

A bill that would increase the deduction amount that teachers at public or non-public schools can claim on their income tax return was announced today. Because many of our teachers selflessly spend hundreds of their own hard-earned dollars on supplies for their classrooms and students, they should not be taxed for using their own money to provide better public services to New York's children.

June 13, 2013
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Leader Stewart-Cousins Announces Bill Requiring State to Pay for Unfunded Mandates Passes Senate

Albany, NY - A bill that requires the State to fund any mandated program imposed on local governments and school districts passed the Senate Monday with strong support from Democratic Conference Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins. The bill would protect local municipalities from bearing the cost of programs created and/ or originated by the State and allow local officials to set their own priorities without the possibility of future unfunded mandated programs disrupting their budgets.

June 11, 2013
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NY Governor Cuomo Officially Introduces Women’s Equality Act (Source: Feminist.org)

Source: Feminist.org

On Tuesday, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo (D) officially introduced the long-awaited Women’s Equality Act.

June 7, 2013
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Legislation Supporting Reservists & National Guard Members

The Senate Democratic Conference supported legislation allowing local governments to grant a 5% tax reduction to long-term veterans of the National Guard or any of the reserve branches of the United States Military. 

Specifically, this bill (S.553B) gives any municipality in the state the authority to create a 5% local property tax exemption for all Reservists and National Guard members who have received their standard “20-year letter,” which informs them of their eligibility for military retirement benefits.

June 6, 2013
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Action to Increase Penalties for Financial Exploitation of Elderly

Stealing from the elderly is a serious crime that deserves harsh prosecution. To close the loopholes that allow criminals to exploit senior citizens with impunity, the Senate passed a legislation that increases penalties on criminals who attempt to financially take advantage of New York’s elderly residents.

June 6, 2013
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Leader Stewart-Cousins Honored with Eleanor's Legacy "Woman of Power & Influence" Award

The Eleanor Roosevelt Legacy Committee honored Leader Stewart-Cousins with the "Woman of Power" Award on Tuesday, June 4th in Albany, NY for her leadership and comittment to making New York the best state to live in.

June 4, 2013
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Richmond Community Services Celebrated 30th Anniversary with Funfest!

Leader Stewart-Cousins stopped by Richmond Community Services as they celebrated their 30th anniversary on Sunday, June 2nd with Funfest, an activity-filled afternoon designed for people supported by Richmond. Established in 1983, Funfest "supports Richmond's mission while raising awareness of the abilities of those with developmental disabilities". 

June 4, 2013
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Leader Stewart-Cousins Speaking at the NY Women's Equality Coalition Rally

It's an exciting day at the Capitol! The NY Women's Equality Coalition held a rally at the West Capitol Park in Albany, NY on Tuesday, June 4th starting at noon with special guest speaker, Cynthia Nixon, to let the Legislators know that the time is NOW to pass Governor Cuomo's 10-Point Plan for Women's Equality.

June 4, 2013
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Senate Democrats: Bring Women's Agenda to a Vote (Source: LoHud.com)

Source: LoHud.com

Senate Democrats want the Senate leadership to hold a vote on the women’s agenda detailed today by Gov. Andrew Cuomo, including strengthening abortion laws in New York.

“All 10 points of this legislative package are crucial for the women of New York including the reproductive health legislation. This legislation simply reconciles state and federal law to protect a woman’s right to choose,” said Senate Democratic Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins, D-Yonkers, in a statement.

June 4, 2013
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JCY-Westchester 15th Annual Scholarship Brunch

Leader Stewart-Cousins attended the JCY-Westchester 15th Annual Scholarship Brunch on Sunday, June 2nd at the Royal Regency Hotel in Yonkers, NY to personally thank and congratulate Jay Cheraskin, Ronit Razinovsky and Marty Siegal, recepients of the 2013 Education Leadership Award and scholarship, for their exceptional service to the Yonkers Public Schools.

June 4, 2013
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June is LGBT Pride Month

June is Lesbian Gay Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) Pride Month. New York has a proud tradition of bringing social issues to the forefront and leading the nation on progressive, civil rights initiatives, and let us all rededicate ourselves to ensure full equality for all of our state’s residents as part of celebrating LGBT Pride Month.

June 4, 2013
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Statement From Senate Democratic Conference Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins Regarding Introduction of Governor Cuomo's Women's Equality Act

“All 10 points of this legislative package are crucial for the women of New York including the reproductive health legislation. This legislation simply reconciles state and federal law to protect a woman’s right to choose. In 1970, when the issue of reproductive health was first passed in New York, 12 Republican Senators joined a majority of their Democratic colleagues to support this landmark legislation. Women’s health and equality is not a Republican or Democratic issue. The women of New York deserve a vote on the entire Women’s Equality Act and deserve to know where their elected officials stand on these important issues.”

June 4, 2013
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Yonkers Couples Renew Vows After 50+ Years of Marriage

Sixty Yonkers couples gathered for a special ceremony hosted the City of Yonkers on Sunday, June 2nd to renew their vows after being married for 50 or more years. Leader Stewart-Cousins stopped by the special event to congratulate the happy couples, and wish them many more years of love and togetherness to come.

June 3, 2013
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State Leaders Hopeful For Campaign Finance Reform Deal (Source: NY1.com)

Source: NY1.com

Supporters of publicly financed campaigns filed into the State Capitol Wednesday to lobby for their cause. At times, their arguments were wonky, Other times, less so, such as when some shouted, "Money out, voters in!"

"I'm hoping this is not one of them," said state Senate Democratic Conference Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins. "We all understand the importance of getting people back involved in the process."

June 3, 2013
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