Joseph A. Griffo's Press releases

Griffo, Task Force Members Release Report and Legislative Recommendations Regarding Heroin & Opioid Addiction

ALBANY – Sen. Joseph A. Griffo today joined his colleagues on the Senate Joint Task Force on Heroin and Opioid Addiction to release a report that summarizes findings from statewide forums on drug addiction, treatment and crime. The report includes 25 bills that the Senate is expected to address before it recesses for the summer.

May 28, 2014
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Griffo To Host Forum on Animal Abuse

UTICA – State Senator Joseph A. Griffo is hosting an educational forum May 27 for the benefit of police officers in Oneida County who handle incidents of animal abuse and neglect.

Oneida County District Attorney Scott McNamara and Susan McDonough, a retired New York State Police investigator who specialized in animal abuse, will lead the informational sessions. They will discuss ways to identify animal abuse and neglect; how to approach abused animals; how to remove animals from an abusive household and how to ensure a successful prosecution of individuals who abuse animals.

May 26, 2014
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State Senate Passes New York Comprehensive Information System Act

Sen. DeFrancisco Bill, Co-Sponsored by Sen. Griffo, Would Improve Statewide Access to Information

State Senator John A. DeFrancisco, R-Syracuse, announced that his bill (S2314) passed the New York State Senate today.

Under this legislation, the New York State Library would be authorized to coordinate the purchase of electronic databases and other information resources for state agencies, library systems and other governmental entities.

May 22, 2014
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Senator Griffo's Weekly Column #21: Putting More Truth in Advertising

Here’s a straightforward, but deceptively hard question: You’re deciding between two doctors for your upcoming heart surgery. One has advertised as being “board certified” by the American Academy of Cardiology. The other, you learn, was certified by the American College of Cardiology. Which one would you trust with the scalpel? (The answer is at the end of this column.)

If you’re hemming and hawing about your answer, take comfort. You are not alone. It is so easy to get confused about the qualifications of medical professionals – and your life may depend on it.

I believe the medical profession needs more truth in its advertising. I’ve introduced a bill that would protect the patient by implementing four small changes.

May 22, 2014
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Organizations Representing More Than 200,000 NYS Veterans Urge Passage of Griffo, Brindisi Bill

Bill Creates Criminal Justice Framework to Ensure Veterans with Untreated Mental Health Conditions Receive Treatment & Fair Process

May 20, 2014
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Griffo Introduces Bill To Ban Powdered Alcohol

ALBANY – State Sen. Joseph A.

May 20, 2014
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Senator Griffo's Weekly Column #20: Reducing Red Tape

Red tape: If you talk to most business owners about their impediments to growth, they’ll give you an earful about the countless hours they spend filling out forms for the government.

Now, not all regulations are bad. We’ve got well designed and well implemented rules that provide more benefits than costs, including ones that ensure our health and safety.

However, New York does not need 750,000 regulations. Businesses are spending $274 billion every year to comply with all these rules. That’s money much better spent on developing new product lines, expanding facilities or hiring additional workers.

May 15, 2014
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Senate Approves Mixed Martial Arts Legislation

The New York State Senate today passed legislation to legalize and regulate mixed martial arts (MMA) competitions in New York State. The bill (S6502), sponsored by Senator Joseph Griffo (R-C-I, Rome), would allow single discipline martial arts organizations to hold professional competitions in New York State and gives the state Athletic Commission the jurisdiction to regulate professional mixed martial arts promotions, participants, bouts and exhibitions.

May 14, 2014
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Senator Griffo's Weekly Column #19: Honoring Our Police & First Responders

The second full week in May is National Police Week and the following week is National EMS week, providing us a great opportunity to recognize the important work done by these two groups in our communities.

It’s also a time for reflection on those we’ve lost. Hundreds of officers gathered at the State Capitol recently to memorialize those killed in the line of duty, including our officers: Utica Police Department Officer Thomas Lindsey; Oneida County Sheriff’s Deputy Kurt Wyman and New Hartford Police Department Officer Joe Corr.

A similar, but larger, gathering will take soon take place in Washington, D.C. There will be 268 names added to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial this year, including the late Patrick J. Fogarty of Lowville.

May 8, 2014
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Senate Passes Bill To Give Parole Board More Discretion Over Its Worst Criminals

Legislation prompted by Utica woman’s murder at the hands of a paroled rapist

ALBANY – The State Senate today passed a bill that would allow the State Board of Parole to require a violent felony offender serve his or her maximum term if there’s clear and convincing evidence the inmate’s release would pose an imminent threat to society.

May 7, 2014
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Senator Griffo's Weekly Column #18: Growing Our Economy With Good Jobs

We’ve committed hundreds of millions of dollars to projects that will make our area a more attractive place to live and work – and we’re not done yet.

Nano Utica is our most exciting development. It’s an emerging hub for research and development in the field of nanotechnology, which is rapidly improving the computers, tablets and laptops we use for everything from hospital patient records to 3-D gaming.

We put $180 million in this year’s state budget for purchasing new equipment for the Computer Chip Commercialization Center currently being constructed on the SUNYIT campus in Marcy. When completed, the $125 million facility will include cleanrooms, laboratories, workforce training facilities, and space for hands-on education.

May 1, 2014
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Griffo's Term Limits Bill Passes Senate

ALBANY – Senator Joseph A. Griffo continued his quest to limit the power of state government and empower the citizenry, as the state Senate passed his bill Tuesday to place term limits on Legislature leadership positions.

The bill, S.3556, would limit the tenure of the temporary president, speaker and minority leaders to 12 years. It would limit the tenure of any committee chairman to eight years, with the exception of the Rules Committee.

April 30, 2014
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Senate Passes Griffo Bill To Help Lower Local Costs for Highway Maintenance

ALBANY – The New York State Senate passed a bill Monday that would benefit local highway departments by reducing its costs and its legal liabilities.

Senator Joseph A. Griffo is sponsor of the bill (S.1965), which would amend highway law to create a new definition: a low-volume road, which would apply to roads where less than 400 vehicles drive daily.

The bill would save municipalities money by allowing their highway departments to perform less maintenance, such as plowing and grading, on these less utilized roads.

April 29, 2014
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Senator Griffo's Weekly Column #17: Celebrating Earth Day, Protecting Our Environment

Earth Day and Arbor Day are wonderful reminders of our ongoing obligation to protect our natural resources, which provide us shelter, food, fuel and beauty.

I was pleased to support this year’s state budget because it recognizes the importance of protecting our clean air and clean water and expanding our access to park lands and other open spaces. Our spending plan also includes needed investments in agriculture, which will allow our farmers to better use their land and to have an easier time bringing their harvest to homes.

April 24, 2014
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Griffo Sponsors Free Drop-Off Event Saturday

NEW HARTFORD –  Is your home filled with old computers you always meant to recycle but never did? Do you have a bunch of documents with personal information that need a good shredding? Are you still storing medication from that one time you got sick years ago?

Bring your junk to the New Hartford Shopping Center, 120 Genesee St. between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. Saturday and we’ll make sure it’s recycled or disposed of properly.

Sen. Joseph A. Griffo is sponsoring the free event, with assistance from Time Warner Cable, Confidata, Sunnking and the New Hartford Police Department.

April 24, 2014
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Senator Griffo's Weekly Column #17: Celebrating Earth Day & Arbor Day

Earth Day and Arbor Day are wonderful reminders of our ongoing obligation to protect our natural resources, which provide us shelter, food, fuel and beauty.

April 24, 2014
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Senator Griffo's Weekly Column #16: Ensuring A Quality Education

I believe our children deserve equal access to a quality education, regardless of where they live, how much their parents earn or how much the house they live in is worth. I voted for this year’s state budget because it will give children the opportunity for a brighter future.

The budget includes more than $25 billion in total education aid, of which $3.4 billion is dedicated to relief from school taxes. Through our advocacy, education aid increased by more than $1.1 billion, or 5 percent – a larger percentage than any other major component of the budget. The schools in my district will receive a combined $23 million more this year than last year.

April 17, 2014
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Griffo, Valesky Announce Funding For Boys' and Girls State

UTICA – State Sens. Joseph A. Griffo and David J. Valesky announced today that the state budget includes, for the first time, funding for American Legion Boys’ State and American Legion Auxiliary’s Empire Girls State.

Morrisville State College will receive $100,000 to defray the cost of hosting 1,100 rising seniors for Boys’ State, which will be held from June 27 to July 3. The College at Brockport will receive $50,000 to cover some costs related to hosting more than 360 rising seniors for Empire Girls State, which will be held June 30 to July 6.

April 17, 2014
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Help For Students Attending College - And Those Paying for It

Congratulations! Your child has just been accepted to a college.

Now: How are you going to pay for that?

Determining the true cost of a continuing education can be tricky. Here’s three websites that will make it easier to find the aid you need – and avoid the predatory scammers lurking.

STUDENT LENDING RESOURCE CENTER

www.dfs.ny.gov/studentprotection

April 16, 2014
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Senator Griffo To Hold April 15 Forum on Heroin and Opioid Addiction in Utica

UTICA - Senator Joseph A. Griffo today announced he will be hosting the Joint Senate Task Force on Heroin and Opioid Addiction in Utica from 5 to 7 p.m. Tuesday at the State Office Building, 207 Genesee St.

The forum is one of 12 being held throughout the state by the bipartisan task force created to solicit input on the rise in the use of heroin and other opioids in New York and to develop legislative recommendations for treating and preventing addiction and its consequences.

The forum will include members of the task force, experts in the fields of education, law enforcement, mental health and substance abuse and municipal officials.

April 10, 2014
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