Joseph A. Griffo's Press releases

Griffo calls for new notification system regarding low water levels at Hinckley Reservoir

UTICA -- Recently I have received numerous calls from constituents concerned about water levels at the Hinckley Reservoir. This prompted me to contact the Mohawk Valley Water Authority, which confirmed that water levels had indeed been dropping due to a faster-than-normal rate of outflow. I further determined that water was being released from the reservoir at about two to three times the normal rate, which led me to contact the New York State Canal Corporation to explain this significant increase in outflow.

July 24, 2015
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Griffo urges NYS Gaming Commission to be consistent and respect deadlines in latest casino licensing process

UTICA – As the New York State Gaming Commission prepares to issue licenses for new casino facilities in the next several months, state Senator Joseph Griffo is expressing his concerns about recent developments in the casino location process.

In a letter Griffo sent this week to the Gaming Commission, he urged the panel to be thorough and consistent in its process to expand gaming facilities across the state. The Senator’s latest letter was prompted by two recent events in particular that he believes raise questions over how the application process is conducted.

July 21, 2015
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Griffo asks PSC to postpone any decision changing 315 area code

UTICA – State Senator Joseph Griffo this week is calling upon the New York State Public Service Commission to postpone any decision to alter the existing 315 area code.

As the Public Service Commission (PSC) prepares to meet Thursday to discuss ways to increase the number of additional phone numbers available in the 315 area code region, Griffo has sent a letter to PSC Commissioner Audrey Zibelman asking the Commission to further explore other potential solutions before taking any action.

July 15, 2015
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GRIFFO: SENATE REPUBLICAN AGREEMENT WITH GOVERNOR SUSPENDS NY SAFE ACT’S AMMUNITION DATABASE

UTICA – State Senator Joseph Griffo announced Friday that a statewide ammunition database established through the NY SAFE Act has been suspended following a legal agreement that Senate Republicans reached with the Governor’s office.

In the Senate’s latest step to rein in this flawed and over-reaching law, a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signed today by New York State Director of Operations James Malatras and Senator Majority Leaders John Flanagan suspends the creation of any database at this time that would require background checks for people who purchase ammunition.

July 10, 2015
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A statement from Sen. Griffo commending law enforcement, calling for review of policies after Dannemora prison break

Every day the two despicable inmates from the Dannemora prison facility were on the run brought yet another day of fears that the worst was yet to come from these violent and desperate individuals. Yet, more than three weeks later, it is with great relief and satisfaction that the bitter fates of these two escaped prisoners brought no further bloodshed than their own.

July 2, 2015
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Griffo: End of Legislative session brings property tax relief, education reform to address Common Core concerns

ALBANY -- State Senator Joseph Griffo of Rome and Assemblyman Anthony Brindisi of Utica announce that the end of the 2015 Legislative Session has brought with it significant education reform, as well as some property tax relief for homeowners.

June 29, 2015
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Griffo, fire officials praise Senate’s passage of bill that provides more cancer coverage for volunteer firefighters

ALBANY – The New York State Senate last week passed a bill co-sponsored by Senator Joseph Griffo that would expand benefit coverage for volunteer firefighters who are diagnosed with various forms of cancer linked to their duties.

The overexposure to smoke that volunteer firefighters experience every time they battle flames makes it more likely that they will develop lung cancer. The exposure to smoke and toxic fumes also creates greater risk that a firefighter will develop cancer in other parts of their body, like their esophagus, stomach, blood, intestines and brain.

June 22, 2015
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Griffo’s legislation would give municipalities greater leverage to purchase streetlights from electric companies

ALBANY – The New York State Legislature this week passed a bill authored by Senator Joseph Griffo that would give municipalities greater leverage in purchasing streetlights from a utility company and making them more energy efficient.

The bill will be sent to the Governor for his consideration.

As municipalities across the state look to save money by utilizing more energy efficient technology, Griffo’s legislation could have significant implications for many communities across the state, including Utica, Rome and Watertown.

June 19, 2015
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Senate passes Griffo’s bill to protect municipalities from unfunded state mandates

ALBANY – The New York State Senate on Wednesday passed legislation authored by Senator Joseph Griffo that would prohibit the state from burdening local municipalities with any future unfunded mandates.

When the state imposes programs upon a municipality without fully funding them, it often forces those localities to find a way to pay for those services. This allows local priorities to essentially be dictated by the state, instead of leaving those choices up to local officials, Griffo said.

The end result is that municipalities often find themselves reluctantly having to impose more taxes on its residents to pay for programs and services that it might otherwise not have wanted.

June 18, 2015
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Griffo bill passed by Senate will help prevent underground utility accidents, injuries

ALBANY – Legislation sponsored by Senator Joseph Griffo and passed by the New York State Senate this week would help further prevent accidents involving underground gas and electric utility lines.

Griffo’s bill (S4862B) would require any municipality or underground facility operator to make sure that any excavator it hires for work will have completed the training and education programs provided by the one-call notification systems. The one-call notification system was established by the state in 2000 to enable excavators to determine the location of all underground utilities in an area where they plan to dig.

June 18, 2015
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Keeping College Campuses Safe: Griffo joins Senate in passing bill to protect students from sexual assaults

ALBANY – Senator Joseph Griffo joined the New York State Senate today in passing crucial legislation that would help protect students against sexual violence on college campuses.

June 17, 2015
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SENATE PASSES GRIFFO BILL LEGALIZING MIXED MARTIAL ARTS (MMA) IN NEW YORK

ALBANY – The New York State Senate on Tuesday passed Senator Joseph Griffo’s legislation that would legalize mixed martial arts in the state and ensure vital protections for fighters in combative sports.

Since 2010, Griffo and the Senate have led bipartisan efforts to bring mixed martial arts (MMA) to New York by passing legislation each year that would remove a statewide ban on the sport. This bill (S5949A) would authorize professional competitions in the state, while also allowing the State Athletic Commission the jurisdiction to regulate professional MMA promotions, participants, bouts and exhibitions.

June 17, 2015
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SENATE PASSES GRIFFO BILL TO PROVIDE EMERGENCY ACCESS TO MEDICAL MARIJUANA

ALBANY – The New York State Senate on Monday passed legislation authored by Senator Joseph Griffo that would help certain critically ill patients obtain emergency access to medical marijuana.

June 16, 2015
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Legislature passes bill sponsored by Griffo that would help better understand epilepsy-related deaths

ALBANY – The New York State Senate and Assembly on Monday passed legislation sponsored by Senator Joseph Griffo and Assemblyman Anthony Brindisi that would require death certificates to include whether someone suffered a sudden, unexpected death in epilepsy.

June 15, 2015
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Senate Passes Griffo’s Bill To Increase Penalties For Unregistered Check Cashers

ALBANY -- The State Senate on Wednesday passed legislation authored by Senator Joseph Griffo that would increase penalties for unregistered individuals or companies who cash checks, drafts or money orders for people without having a license to do so.

Senator Griffo’s consumer protection bill (S3618) would make it a Class E felony to commit this crime, and it would impose a $2,500 fine for each violation. The crime is currently classified as a Class A misdemeanor.

June 10, 2015
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Griffo Joins Senate in Passing Legislation To Confront Rising Crisis In Heroin, Opioid Abuse

 

ALBANY -- State Senator Joseph Griffo joined the New York State Senate on Tuesday in passing a package of proposed legislation that would help prevent heroin deaths and put more drug dealers behind bars for peddling dangerous opioids.

June 10, 2015
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Senate Passes Measures To Support And Help Volunteer Firefighters And Other Emergency Responders

ALBANY – The New York State Senate today passed four bills that recognize the daily sacrifice and courage of volunteer firefighters and other emergency responders by offering them additional tax credits and education benefits.

June 9, 2015
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Griffo Joins Patients, Families As They Rally For Emergency Access To Medical Marijuana

ALBANY – State Senator Joseph Griffo joined patients, family members and advocates as they stood with legislators from both sides of the aisle today in support of a bill that would direct the state to establish a program to help critically ill patients obtain emergency access to medical marijuana as soon as possible.

June 9, 2015
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Senate Passes Griffo's Co-Sponsored NY-SAFE Act Reforms

ALBANY – The State Senate on Monday passed legislation co-sponsored by Sen. Joseph Griffo that would repeal certain aspects of the so-called NY SAFE Act.

Sen. Griffo has always shared a strong belief with many constituents across his district in Oneida, Lewis and St. Lawrence counties that the Governor’s SAFE Act is a flawed and overreaching policy that was rushed into implementation in 2013 without any input from law-abiding gun owners. The law was tasked with certain authorities without knowing relevant facts at the time, and therefore Sen. Griffo believes the Senate’s vote to revise the SAFE Act is a step toward addressing some of the most egregious provisions.

June 8, 2015
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Senate Passes Griffo's Bill to Ban Sale of Powdered Alcohol

The New York State Senate today passed legislation (S1757A), sponsored by Senator Joseph Griffo (R-C-I, Rome), that would prohibit the sale of any powdered or crystalline alcohol product in the state. 

June 8, 2015
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