Newsroom

Senator Valesky Joins Leaders to Address Smartphone Theft

Senator David Valesky joined NYS Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman, Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner, and Rep. Dan Maffei to address smartphone theft, which is a problem in Syracuse.

April 14, 2014
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Senator David J. Valesky joins Senate Task Force on Heroin and Opioid Addiction

SYRACUSE, N.Y.—State Senator David J. Valesky (D-Oneida) today announced that he has joined the Senate Task Force on Heroin and Opioid Addiction to examine the rise in use of heroin and other opioids in New York State and develop recommendations for treating and preventing addiction.

“These drugs are highly addictive and extremely dangerous, and the increase in use that we’re seeing is deeply troubling,” Senator Valesky said. “Action is needed, and through this task force, I am hopeful we can do our part from a legislative perspective.”

April 14, 2014
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Newsmakers Interview, Road Construction, Fire Dept. Open House

If you didn't get a chance to watch my interview with Dan Cummings on Newsmakers this weekend, you can see it online. We talked about the Independent Democratic Conference, the state budget process, and more.

Avoid Road Construction

April 11, 2014
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Highlights from the Fourth Consecutive On-Time Budget

This week marked the passage of the state’s fourth consecutive on-time budget. This has not been accomplished with the same Governor and legislative leaders in more than 40 years. This budget holds spending growth below 2% and addresses your priorities—among them increased school aid, property tax relief, health care, and growing the economy.

Highlights of the budget include:

April 11, 2014
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Grow: Pride of NY, Fishing Licenses from Home, Calculate College Costs

Although much of the focus in Albany this week is on the state budget, legislation is also being considered and brought to the Senate floor. Today the Senate unanimously passed legislation I sponsored (S.5064) that will help consumers find garden centers, nurseries, Christmas tree farms and other horticulture dealers that sell New York state products. The Grow: Pride of New York program creates a designation for such businesses and allows them to use marketing materials that promote their locally sourced products.

In addition, I supported several bills that passed the Senate this week:

April 11, 2014
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Your Feedback Is Needed

As we proceed through budget negotiations and the Legislative Session, I am interested to know your opinion on a number of issues that are being discussed. I recently mailed a survey to my constituents asking about full-day pre-kindergarten, medical marijuana, the estate tax, campaign finance reform, and more. If you have already returned the survey, I appreciate your feedback. If not, please mail it back at your earliest convenience, or fill out the survey on my website. Thank you.

Women's History Month Exhibit

April 11, 2014
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Senator Valesky Wears White Ribbon to Raise Awareness about Domestic Violence

Senator David Valesky, with Senator John DeFrancisco, wears a white ribbon in support of Vera House and its campaign to raise awareness about domestic and sexual abuse.

April 2, 2014
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SENATOR VALESKY HAILS PASSAGE OF FOURTH CONSECUTIVE ON-TIME STATE BUDGET

ALBANY, NY—State Senator David J. Valesky (D-Oneida) today lauded the passage of the state’s fourth and historic consecutive on-time budget. This has not been accomplished with the same Governor and legislative leaders in more than 40 years.

April 1, 2014
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SENATOR VALESKY ANNOUNCES EXPANSION OF SENIOR PRESCRIPTION DRUG PROGRAM IN FINAL NYS BUDGET

ALBANY, NY—State Senator David J. Valesky (D-Oneida), Chair of the Senate Aging Committee, announced the state budget will expand the successful Elderly Pharmaceutical Insurance Coverage (EPIC) Program to include more than 25,000 more seniors in New York State. Prescription drug rates have increased twice the rate of inflation, according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis, disproportionately affecting senior citizens, many of whom live on fixed incomes.

"Prescription drugs are one of the most expensive components of health care for seniors," Senator Valesky said. "With the cost of prescription drugs increasing significantly, it is important to expand the EPIC program to provide a safety net for more older New Yorkers."

March 29, 2014
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Senator Valesky’s Grow: Pride of New York legislation passes Senate

ALBANY, N.Y.—The State Senate unanimously passed legislation (S.5064) sponsored by Senator David J. Valesky (D-Oneida) that will help consumers find garden centers, nurseries, Christmas tree farms and other horticulture dealers that sell New York state products. The Grow: Pride of New York program creates a designation for such businesses and allows them to use marketing materials that promote their locally sourced products.

March 27, 2014
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Senator Valesky joins Manufacturers Alliance to release study

Syracuse, New York - Senator David Valesky (D-Oneida) joined local business leaders to announce the results of a new study released today, “Manufacturing Executives: Attitudes, Operations, Expectations & Opportunities,” which indicate that while the manufacturing sector stills finds the economic climate to be challenging, they continue to invest in capital and operations in New York State. The study is part of a continuation series that began in 2010, conducted by Zogby Analytics, and commissioned by a partnership between the Manufacturers Alliance of New York State, its policy and research arm the Manufacturers Research Institute of New York State, and the New York State Economic Development Council (NYSEDC).

March 25, 2014
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Cardinal Dolan Visits Senator Valesky and Independent Democratic Conference

Senator David Valesky and the other members of the Independent Democratic Conference - Sen. Jeff Klein, Sen. David Carlucci, Sen. Diane Savino, and Sen. Tony Avella - met with His Eminence Timothy Cardinal Dolan on March 18 in Albany.

March 24, 2014
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Senator Valesky Meets with SUNY Potsdam Representatives

Senator David Valesky met with representatives from SUNY Potsdam on March 11. They included student Jonathan Bintz, Government Relations Liaison Alex Jacobs Wilke, students Chelsea Rourke and Stephanie Bub, and SUNY Potsdam President Dennis Hefner.

March 24, 2014
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SENATOR VALESKY, IDC RELEASE SENIOR AFFORDABILITY REPORT

State Senator David J. Valesky (D-Oneida), Chair of the Senate Aging Committee,  along with his colleagues in the Independent Democratic Conference, released a report in support of the conference’s proposals making New York State more affordable for senior citizens. Each of these proposals were addressed in the Senate one-house budget resolution.

March 19, 2014
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Is legalization of crossbows off again in New York? State budget talks will decide

By David Figura | dfigura@syracuse.com

on March 14, 2014 at 10:05 AM, updated March 14, 2014 at 10:39 AM

The state Assembly earlier this week passed a budget resolution for the 2014-2015 state spending plan, leaving out any reference to legalizing crossbows for hunting and several other outdoors-related measures that were pitched by Gov. Andrew Cuomo earlier this year in his proposed executive budget.

Does that mean that crossbows will remain illegal for this year's hunting season?

It's too early to tell. The Assembly's budget resolution is essentially a "wish list" of the Assembly's Democratic majority.

March 18, 2014
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Lawmakers get into the details of proposed pot program

By Laura Nahmias 2:41 p.m. | Mar. 12, 2014

ALBANY—With a proposal to legalize medical marijuana gaining momentum in the State Senate, lawmakers on Wednesday questioned patients, attorneys and marijuana business owners on the particulars of such a program.

“Many of us in the legislature are conversant I guess with the legislative side of it, but very few of us are conversant with the kinds of questions we’re asking,” said Ruth Hassell-Thompson, a Westchester Democrat, after one witness explained the difference between street names for strains of the drug (including "Bubble Gum Kush") and the technical labels that some states assign.

March 18, 2014
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Hamilton FFA Members Attend Agriculture Awareness Days in the Capitol

By Lindsey Palmer

(Hamilton, NY – March 2014) On Feb. 10 and 11, two members from the Hamilton FFA, Greg and Lindsey Palmer, attended the FFA Government Awareness Days in Albany. The members traveled with other local FFA chapters to meet 100 FFA members and advisors from across New York state  in the capitol.

On Monday, Feb. 10, members attended five sessions hosted by the NYS Farm Bureau, which taught the students about variety of agriculture issues such as GMO labeling, farm labor, animal welfare and agriculture teacher shortages.

March 18, 2014
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Valesky, Brindisi proposal would create new NY high school degree for business curriculum

By Teri Weaver | tweaver@syracuse.com

on March 06, 2014 at 2:07 PM, updated March 06, 2014 at 4:02 PM

SYRACUSE, N.Y. -- New York schools would award high school diplomas for students who excel at lessons and job training meant to built a new generation of manufacturing and high-tech workers if legislation introduced by Sen. David Valesky passes.

The bill would create a Career and Technical Education diploma to recognize students for schoolwork that measures on-the-job learning and employability rather than traditional curriculum.

March 18, 2014
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John Lemondes undecided about GOP primary for Congress, rules out run for state Senate

By Mark Weiner | mweiner@syracuse.com

on March 06, 2014 at 7:08 PM, updated March 07, 2014 at 11:57 AM

WASHINGTON -- Retired Army Col. John Lemondes, who finished second in the race for the Republican designation for Congress, said today he has ruled out a possible campaign for state Senate.

Lemondes, 48, of LaFayette, lives in the district of State Sen. David Valesky, D-Oneida, who currently has no Republican opponent in this year's election.

Lemondes had been rumored as a possible opponent to Valesky after his strong showing Saturday in the Republican committee vote for a candidate in the 24th Congressional District.

March 18, 2014
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Albany proposal means to help young NY farmers with tax breaks, student loan forgiveness

By Teri Weaver | tweaver@syracuse.com

on March 04, 2014 at 1:50 PM, updated March 04, 2014 at 2:10 PM

SYRACUSE, N.Y. -- Sen. Patty Ritchie, R-Oswegatchie, today introduced legislation that would put $30 million in state taxpayer money toward helping young New Yorkers replace an aging generation of farmers.

The "Young Farmers NY" legislative package includes a college loan forgiveness program, new tax breaks and an easing of property transfers -- all measures designed to encourage young people to choose agriculture as a career, according to Ritchie, who chairs the Senate Agriculture Committee.

Sen. David Valesky, D-Oneida, also supports the proposal.

March 18, 2014
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