David J. Valesky's News items

Senator Valesky Announces Committee Assignments

Sen. David J. Valesky (D-Oneida) is pleased to announce new Senate Committee assignments for the 2007-2008 legislative sessions.

In addition to remaining the Ranking member on the Senate Agriculture Committee, Sen. Valesky requested and received a position on the influential Senate Health Committee.

"I look forward to representing the interests of our many hospitals and the communities they serve as a member of the Health Committee," said Sen. Valesky.


January 19, 2007

Senator Valesky Welcomes Inauguration Of Governor Spitzer

"Governor Spitzer's inauguration address was a clear and defining moment in the battle to reform state government and to get Albany once again working for all New Yorkers.

In partnership with Eliot Spitzer and Lt. Governor David Paterson, I will continue to fight to improve Central New York's economy, make sure that our schools receive the funding that our children deserve, and to reverse out-of-control health care costs and property tax increases."

January 1, 2007

Senator Valesky On The Berger Commission Report

"I am reviewing the report issued by the Commission and have begun discussing its implications with local health care professionals, including SUNY Upstate Medical University President David Smith and Crouse Hospital CEO and President Paul Kronenberg.""I fully recognize the need to improve and streamline our state’s healthcare system, and that tough decisions must be made to do so.

December 1, 2006

Senator Valesky Applauds Signing Of Eminent Domain Bill

After weeks of urging the Governor to sign the Eminent Domain bill, which would restrict the New York Regional Interconnect’s efforts, Sen. David Valesky (D-Oneida) attended the ceremony in which it became law."The people of Madison County worked very hard to get this law passed, and I was pleased to be a part of that process," said Sen. Valesky.

October 3, 2006

Senator Valesky Applauds New Agri-tourism Law

Legislation co-sponsored by State Sen. David J. Valesky (D-Oneida) that promotes the growing agri-tourism industry has been signed into law by Gov. George Pataki.The legislation, which was sponsored by the bipartisan New York State Legislative Commission on Rural Resources, amendsNew York’s right to farm laws to include agri-tourism on the state’s list of sound agricultural practices."By linking together the interests of our State’s agricultural and tourism industries," said Sen.

September 6, 2006

Senator Valesky Named To Farm Bureau Circle Of Friends

New York Farm Bureau announced that Senator David Valesky (D-Oneida) has been named to its "2006 Circle of Friends.""For Upstate communities, agriculture is truly the backbone of the economy and I am committed to advocating strongly for issues important to New York’s farmers," Sen. Valesky said.

August 24, 2006

A Proposal To Promote Our Parks

The day before the heat wave hit in early August, the Governor announced he would open New York State beaches on Long Island as an affordable way for the public to cool off.Like many upstate New Yorkers, I was surprised the Governor at first only proposed opening downstate beaches. So, I immediately called on him to extend the free beach days to Upstate New York.

August 13, 2006

Senator Valesky Applauds New Rural Broadband Law

A bill that encourages rural broadband development, which Sen. David J. Valesky (D-Oneida) cosponsored in the Senate, has been signed into law. This new law will do more than just help bring high-speed Internet access to rural communities. It will encourage rural job retention and expand economic opportunities."Broadband access is an important tool in rural economic development and job retention," said Sen. Valesky. "Our local businesses need broadband access to compete in the global marketplace.

July 27, 2006

Reducing The Property Tax Burden

There is no doubt New Yorkers are overburdened with property taxes and that reform of this local tax is a top priority. In the coming months property owners who qualify for the STAR program and the Enhanced STAR program will receive rebate checks to help address their property tax burden.

July 9, 2006

End Of Session Report

The New York Senate has finished work in Albany and, all in all, 2006 was a productive session, building on the success of 2005. After passing the second on-time budget earlier in the year, we were able to use the rest of session to provide property tax relief, to promote Medicaid fraud prevention and to strengthen anti-crime laws.That said, some of the agreements reached and solutions adopted were only partial steps toward real resolution.

June 28, 2006

Senator Valesky Says Time For Medicaid Fraud Solution Is Now

Last year, as part of the first on-time budget in 20 years, we passed a cap on the local component of Medicaid. This was an important first step in efforts both to control spending on the nation's most expensive Medicaid program and to help counties reign in out-of-control property taxes.With this important step behind us, it was my hope that this year the Legislature would reign in fraud and misuse of Medicaid dollars. New York currently spends about $45 billion for Medicaid a year on some 4.2 million recipients.

June 20, 2006

Senator Valesky Provides Update On New York Regional Interconnect Project

Last week I sat down with members of the New York State Public Service Commission, along with other Upstate New York legislators, to receive a briefing on the New York Regional Interconnect power line project -- a project I strongly oppose.I was relieved that the PSC seemed receptive to our input, and that the State would conduct public hearings as part of the process considering NYRI’s application.Most of all I was pleased to look around the table and see legislators from both parties participating in the meeting, which was organized by Assembly Energy Chair Pa

June 8, 2006

Protecting Our Hunting Heritage

Hunting and fishing have been part of the rural Upstate way of life for generations, with tradition often passed on from parents to their young adult children during weekend hunting and fishing trips.

May 25, 2006

Senator Valesky Named To Commission On Program And Economic Development

Senate Minority Leader David Paterson has appointed state Senator David J. Valesky (D-Oneida) to the Temporary Commission on the future of New York State Power Programs for Economic Development -- a task force set up to examine the effectiveness of programs intended to make energy more affordable for manufacturers and other businesses."The power programs we will examine were created to foster economic development and to save jobs -- good-paying manufacturing jobs that helped build the upstate economy," said Sen. Valesky.

May 23, 2006

Senator Valesky Lauds Gas Tax Cap And Biodiesel Credit

With this legislation the Senate took important steps to deal with the energy crisis, capping our state sales tax on gasoline to reduce costs today and enacting policies that will help reduce dependency on foreign oil tomorrow.While I am pleased again to support a cap on the gas tax, a measure the Senate also passed last fall, I am particularly pleased that the legislation we passed today included a tax credit to encourage the use of biodiesel in home heating fuel, an idea I proposed last fall.The increased use of biodiesel will not only help reduce toxic emissions, it will

May 16, 2006

Senator Valesky Proposes Bill To Expand Freedom Of Information Laws For Legislature

Right now, thanks to the state’s Freedom of Information Laws, everyday citizens can request to see most of the documents produced by state agencies. But because of a double standard in New York’s FOIL statutes, the same is not true of documents produced by the Legislature.

May 11, 2006

Reform Day, A Look Ahead

Today, thousands of New Yorkers representing more than 30 organizations will travel to Albany to rally on the 2006 Reform New York Day of Action. I see this day as an opportunity to measure what the reform movement has accomplished in recent years, and to consider how much work there is left to do.As someone who ran for office on a reform platform, people often come up to me and ask how I think the reform movement is doing.

May 8, 2006

Senator Valesky's Stand Improves Transparency In Member Items

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.

April 27, 2006

Redistricting Reform Bill Proposed By Senator Valesky

Over recent months I have been detailing ideas and legislative proposals I believe will help make our state government more open, responsible and responsive.

April 18, 2006
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