Jack M. Martins' Press releases

From the Desk of Senator Jack M. Martins

When the Rules Change

Something unfair is going on. It’s not only unfair but at the risk of sounding cliché, it’s strikes me as distinctly un-American. It’s been written about here and there, but has mostly gone unnoticed by the media and the few outlets that have covered it, in my opinion, have missed the point.

For anyone who has ever used catering facilities, whether local halls, caterers at hotels or even at synagogues and civic organizations, you’ll recall that your bill normally includes a “service charge” – a percentage of the overall bill. That charge has become the center of much discussion.

May 22, 2012
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Senate Passes Bill That Makes Viewing Child Pornography a Felony

The New York State Senate passed legislation (S.7407), sponsored by Senator Martin Golden (R-C-I, Brooklyn), that would make the viewing of child pornography a felony crime. The bill amends current state law to say that a person is guilty of a crime when the person knowingly accesses child pornography with the intent to view.

The legislation comes after a state Court of Appeals ruling earlier this month that said viewing child pornography on the Internet is not a crime. This legislation closes that loophole.

“This legislation will deter anyone from trying to exploit children by viewing child pornography by making it a felony. This is not acceptable behavior and we should not tolerate it,” said Senator Martins, who supported the bill.

May 18, 2012
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Senator Martins Tours Progress on East Side Access Project

On a recent Friday, Senator Jack M. Martins took a tour of the East Side Access Project, where he saw first-hand the progress being made on the massive capital project that entails excavating and building tunnels that will bring the Long Island Railroad (LIRR) into Grand Central.

May 18, 2012
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Port Washington Students Shine in Mock Courtroom

If you were to visit one of five classrooms at the Sousa Elementary School, one of the four elementary schools in the Port Washington School District, on Friday, May 11, you may think for a moment that you were in federal district court or state supreme court. That’s because elementary school students were conducting mock trials as part of the Port Enrichment Program.

The students debated a scenario involving the parents of a young man who was injured suing the producers of a show, “Wildest, Wackiest, Craziest Teen Video Competition” for negligence for broadcasting a show that encourages students to performing reckless students.

May 17, 2012
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Senator Martins Names Jean-Marie Posner a NYS Senate Woman of Distinction

Each year, the New York State Senate honors women who have made significant contributions to their community and, in doing so, have had a positive impact on New York State. This year, Senator Jack M. Martins named Jean-Marie Posner of Sands Point the Seventh Senate District Woman of Distinction.

On Tuesday, May 16, Jean-Marie made the trip to Albany for the special ceremony that was held after Senate Session, during which the women of distinction from each of the Senate districts were recognized.

“Jean-Marie has meant so much to many organizations and fellow residents. Her work for the Friends of the Sands Point Preserve as well as for education and senior citizen affairs has left an indelible mark on the community,” said Senator Martins.

May 16, 2012
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Senate Passes Bill That Extends Time to Use Train Tickets and Eliminates Refund Charges

Common sense legislation, sponsored by Senator Jack M. Martins, to repeal a processing fee for customers to refund unused Long Island Railroad tickets received wide bi-partisan support as it passed the Senate unanimously Tuesday by a 60-0 vote.

Currently, a customer who purchases a LIRR ticket and doesn’t use it has to pay a $10 processing fee just to receive a refund. In many cases, the refund costs more than the ticket itself. In addition, the current policy gives customers only 14 days to use a ticket or 30 days to seek a refund. Senator Martins’ bill (S.3778D) eliminates the $10 processing fee to return an unused ticket and gives customers a full six months after the purchase date to either use the ticket or receive a full refund.

May 16, 2012
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Senate Majority Proposes College Affordability Plan

Senate Majority Leader Dean G. Skelos and members of the Senate Majority Conference outlined a plan to help middle-class families and students afford the rapidly increasing cost of a college education. The Senate’s 2012 College Affordability Plan would help parents save for higher education for their children and give students and families access to low interest student loans, as well as clear information about the size of the loan debt they are taking on.

May 16, 2012
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Starting Squads for Henry Viscardi-Elmont Basketball Game at Martins 3-on-3 Tourney Classic Announced!

The starting squads for the special Elmont Spartans-Henry Viscardi Cougars Wheelchair Basketball game rematch were announced today in the run-up to the Martins Classic 3on3 Tournament.

May 14, 2012
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From the Desk of Senator Jack M. Martins

Mother - The Great Vacationless Class

Two sets of twins – same family – double doses of double trouble. That was life for my mom and dad: two sets of twins and another child just to stir things up. How they actually survived, especially mom, I’ll never know. But having a weekly column I think it’s high time I offer some reflection on and praise for the woman who so selflessly raised us. So I apologize in advance if this week’s column sounds like I’m being sentimental about her. It’s only because I absolutely am.

May 14, 2012
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Congratulations to Manhasset High School Crew Team on Win at LI Regatta

Members of the Manhasset High School Crew Team look forward to participating in the Long Island Scholastic Championship Regatta each year and once again this year, their enthusiasm for rowing showed as the team won 14 Gold, two Silver and three Bronze Medals. In fact, Manhasset had 23 boats racing, 19 of which clinched medals.

“It is a beautiful place to row and it allows us to share good times with all the Long Island schools as well as those near us,” said coach Hugo Guardado-Henriquez, who has been with the program for four years.

May 14, 2012
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Senator Martins Congratulates Newest Eagle Scout From New Hyde Park

Senator Jack M. Martins recently attended an Eagle Court of Honor to congratulate Neil Daniel Duggan of Boy Scout Troop 298 of New Hyde Park for achieving the rank of Eagle Scout, the highest rank a scout can achieve. Senator Martins presented Neil Daniel Duggan with the resolution that was passed on the floor of the Senate on April 19.,

May 9, 2012
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From the Desk of Senator Jack M. Martins

Signs of Progress

Hold on to your hats. I’m going to do something I rarely do and for which I may not have another opportunity for a long time: compliment the MTA, and in particular thank the Long Island Railroad. Usually when I write about them, it’s to bring to light some egregiously wasteful practice or poor decision that further burdens taxpayers or riders. To be sure, there’s still plenty of that devil-may-care attitude there to fuel columns well into the next decade but by the same token, it’s only fair that I point out when the MTA makes progress.

May 9, 2012
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Senate Passes Sex Abuse Prevention Bills

Measures Increase Penalties, Enhance Community Notification and Protection

The New York State Senate passed a package of eight bills to prevent sexual predators from obtaining access to potential victims and help law enforcement and communities keep track of their whereabouts. The bills will help increase the amount of information available about convicted sex offenders and seeks to prevent them from obtaining access to vulnerable individuals.

May 2, 2012
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From the Desk of Senator Jack M. Martins

More Than Just a Tax Cap

I think people in neighboring states could hear New Yorkers breathe a collective sigh of relief this past week as we finally began to see the effects of our new tax cap. More than anything else, property taxes have been the overriding issue in New York for many years, especially since they’ve grown on average more than 6 percent a year for ten years, double the rate of inflation. So, after leading the nation in runaway increases for so long, we finally hit the brakes in 2011 with a tax cap that had bi-partisan support in both houses of the legislature. With limited exceptions, it holds increases in school and local property taxes to two percent a year, or the rate of inflation, whichever is less.

May 1, 2012
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Senator Martins Honors Army Sergeant First Class on Floor of Senate

During West Point Day in Albany on April 26, Senator Jack M. Martins recognized a special guest, Sergeant First Class Robert W. Frame of Albertson. Sergeant Frame, a 1998 graduate of Mineola High School, enlisted in the Army in 1998. His proud parents are Walter and Kathleen. Public service runs in the family as Walter is active in the Albertson Fire Department and involved with the Fireman's Association of the State of New York (FASNY).

“Sergeant Frame represents something larger than himself. Those who serve like Sergeant Frame serve on so many different levels. It is that multi-generational commitment to serving others that is the backbone of our communities. It’s an honor to recognize Sergeant Frame and his family,” Senator Martins said on the floor of the Senate.

April 30, 2012
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Track Your Income Tax Refund

Taxpayers whose state and/or federal income tax returns indicate they will receive a tax refund this year can use the Internet to find out when their refund will arrive.

Both the New York State Department of Taxation and Finance and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) allow taxpayers to track the status of tax refunds online through their respective websites. Taxpayers can utilize both refund tracking services approximately 72 hours after they file their tax returns electronically or four weeks after they mail a paper return.

April 26, 2012
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Senator Martins Attends Mineola Junior FD Installation Dinner

Senator Jack M. Martins attended the Mineola Junior Fire Department 10th Annual Installation Dinner on April 21. The officers installed included Captain Christopher Strauss, Lieutenant Matthew Barroca and Lieutenant Daniel Dempsey. Ex-captain Mike Fernandes was named the Junior Firefighter of the Year.

The Mineola Junior Fire Department has been highly successful in producing future firfighters in large part to the guidance provided by advisors Bill Gresalfi, Gary Mazur, Scott Strauss, Rob Connolly, Lou Santosus, Jack Fernandes, Joseph Tartaglia, Rich Ueland, Atnhony Natale, Michael Stack, Bryan Strauss, Jack Wolf and Tyler Wolf. Other members of the department who provide crucial support are Chief Joe Pratt and Steven "Chief" Stolarik.

 

April 23, 2012
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From the Desk of Senator Jack M. Martins

The Signs of Spring

As sure as the swallows return to Capistrano, you know it must be spring in New York City when the mayoral candidates declare war on the suburbs. No sooner did we repeal the onerous MTA payroll tax than candidate, Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer, trotted out his plan for a new and improved commuter tax. I know, I know, it’s not really new. Multiple candidates in every mayoral race suggest it, but Mr. Stringer gets the prize for being the first this year. It’s a sharp political move for them when you think about it: advocate for a tax on those who can’t vote for (or against) you anyway.

April 23, 2012
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Senator Martins Honors Diana Merenda for Her Years of Service to Village of Plandome Heights

Senator Jack M. Martins, chairman of the Senate Standing Committee on Local Government, recently presented a Senate Resolution in honor of Diana Merenda for her years of service as Mayor of the Village of Plandome Heights.

Diana faithfully served the village, first as a member of the Planning Board, then as a village trustee and, since 2008, as Mayor. She decided to retire this year.

Senator Martins presented Diana with a copy of the resolution, which was adopted by the New York State Senate on March 20, in front of her family at a meeting of the Nassau County Legislature. During that meeting, Legislator Judi Bosworth also presented Diana with a Legislative Citation.

April 20, 2012
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Youth Group From Temple Sinai of Roslyn Visits Albany to Discuss Problem of Bullying

Senator Jack M. Martins welcomed Rabbi Michael White, members of the professional staff and a group of young leaders from Temple Sinai of Roslyn in Roslyn Heights to Albany. Rabbi White and the young men and women visited the State Capitol to speak about issues that are important to the youth, including bullying and cyberbullying, which Rabbi White called a “corrosive epidemic.”

April 19, 2012
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