The reform movement scored a major victory this past week on behalf of all state taxpayers, by helping to lift the veil of secrecy on member items and adding more openness to the budget process.I was pleased to stand with my colleagues in the Senate as we demanded changes and used the power of our votes to improve transparency .In recent years, the member item process had grown increasingly secretive.
Senator Valesky recently participated in the Great New York Read Aloud at E.R. Andrews Elementary School in Morrisville. The Senator read stories to Mrs. Morley's 2nd grade class and Ms. Yacavone's kindergarten class.
For the second year in a row, the people of New York have a budget before the April 1st deadline, and for the second year in a row our state is closer to having a Legislature that is more open and more responsive. The budget I voted to adopt is not just on-time, it is also a strong budget that provides property tax relief, improves school funding and protects higher education.This budget reduces the property tax burden in several ways. First and foremost, the budget includes $805 million in property tax rebates for home owners.
Recognizing his commitment to education, Senator David J. Valesky (D-Oneida) was honored as the "Freshman Legislator of the Year" on March 5th at the New York School Board Association’s annual legislative conference."When I took office, I made my support of public education a top priority. I believe sound education is a foundation not just for individual success, but for the economic prosperity of the entire community," said Sen. Valesky.
The Governor’s proposed budget holds one item in particular that surprised and angered many snowmobilers. Within the budget is a plan to take $2.5 million out of the snowmobile trail fund and put it into the general fund. As the legislature considers the budget, there are compelling economic reasons why we need to rethink the proposed shift of funds.Today, snowmobiling is much more than just a recreational activity. It is a big business in our state. There are more than 169,000 snowmobiles registered in New York.
It seems every few weeks we hear another heartbreaking story about how a drunk driver has taken the life of an innocent victim in our area. These sad tales have touched so many members of our community, from the teenagers in Cicero to the WSYR family and their loyal listeners.
Today, Senator David J. Valesky (D-Oneida) called on the Governor and the state legislature to use the 2006 legislative session to address, once and for all, the state's school funding crisis. The Senator made his remarks a week after the Governor proposed his latest budget -- a budget that further illustrates the state's broken school aid funding system."Last week, the Governor unveiled a budget that he said holds a 'record increase' in school funding," said Sen. Valesky.
Senator Valesky gave the following speech on January 14, 2006 at Morrisville State College. The Senator's briefing on Agriculture was part of a symposium on reclaiming fallow land using livestock as a tool for change and understanding the relationships between the soil seed bank, animal impact, grazing management and the opportunities for landowners and farmers to work together.Thanks for that welcome. And, of course, thank you President Cross for your kind words. It is always a pleasure to be here with you at Morrisville State College.
State Senator David Valesky has introduced legislation (S. 6024) that would disclose the hidden costs of State and local municipal bond sales, which often amount to millions of taxpayers’ dollars.Attorney General Eliot Spitzer said "I applaud Senator Valesky for shining a light on an area of financing that has had little, if any, scrutiny. Greater transparency in these transactions can only serve to improve the accountability of government."State Comptroller Alan Hevesi said "I commend Senator Valesky for turning his attention toward reforming the State’s debt practices.
Senator David Valesky checked out a book recently at the Weedsport Library, which is now using the Polaris integrated library system. Senator Valeskysecured a New York State grant in the amount of $6,400 that enabledthe Finger Lakes Library system to purchase software for the new system.The new system, which replaces afifteen-year-old Dynix system,will allow for information to be shared between the libraries in the five county Finger Lakes Library system.
I have long believed the people of New York State deserve a government that is open, responsive and responsible. They deserve leaders who serve everyone, not just the vested interests and the power elite. They deserve a legislature that tackles our greatest challenges before these challenges reach crisis level. And they deserve a government that works every single day to make this state a better place to live, work and do business.When I ran for the Senate, I expressed these ideas along with the general frustration so many of us feel about our state government.
Senator David J. Valeskyand Assemblywoman RoAnn M. Destito, along with Rome Mayor James Brown and members of the Afro-American Heritage Associationgathered for a dedication ceremony of the newly named Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Bridge in Rome.Senator Valesky and Assemblywoman Destito sponsored legislation to rename the bridge, which has been commonly referred to as the Erie Boulevard Bridge. The bridge comprises parts of routes 69, 49 and 29 in the city of Rome."Dr.
Did you know that every 15 seconds a woman in this country is the victim of violence at the hands of a husband, lover or domestic partner? In fact, battery is the single major cause of injury to women, harming more individuals than auto accidents, muggings and sexual assaults combined. Sadly, nearly half of all women will be the victim of domestic violence at some point in their lives.These are frightening statistics but it is essential that we talk about these facts this October as we observe Domestic Violence Awareness Month.
Senator David Valesky joined Congressman Jim Walsh and Syracuse Research Corporation executives for the groundbreaking of a new 100,000 square foot expansion that willbring 250 new jobsto Central New York. Senator Valesky is committed to economic development in the 49th Senate District, as well as around New York State.
As teachers and children begin another school year it is also time for those of us in state government to refocus on what we can do to improve our schools and better prepare our children for the future.Right now, I believe we are not doing enough.One simple example is the issue of school supplies. Due to tight budgets, many school districts have cut spending on classroom supplies. This forces dedicated teachers to spend money out of their own pocket to benefit their students.