New York State Senator Kenneth P. LaValle said today that the Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has been directed by New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo to issue refunds to recreational fishermen and charter boat operators who purchased a Recreational Marine Fishing License (RMFL) in addition to refunding license fees to New Yorkers who purchased lifetime licenses. The federal government requires all fishermen in marine waters must be registered, and the state originally met this requirement by adopting the RMFL program. However, the 2011-2012 New York State budget eliminated the license fee, and created a no-fee registration program to comply with federal law. Therefore, any New Yorker who purchased a license for 2011 will be issued a refund.
New York State Senator Kenneth P. LaValle said today that legislation he introduced in the New York State Senate and passed both houses of the legislature has been signed into law by New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo.
The new law closes a major loophole in New York’s animal fighting laws that currently allows some dogfighters and cockfighters to escape punishment by masquerading as spectators.
“Causing animals to fight and betting on the outcome is inhumane,” said Senator LaValle. "This new law will provide law enforcement and prosecutors with a stronger tool with which to combat these terrible acts."
Legislation has been introduced in the New York State Senate that would make sweeping, comprehensive changes to the state’s child protection laws to help protect children from cruel and repeated abuse. The bill, called the “Protect Our Children Act” (S.5862), is co-sponsored by Senator Kenneth P. LaValle (R,C,I –Port Jefferson).
Among the more than two dozen provisions of this legislation, the Protect Our Children Act would create the new crime of aggravated murder of a child with a sentence of life without parole.
New York State Senator Kenneth P. LaValle (at podium), author of the historic Pine Barrens Preservation legislation that assured the protection of environmentally sensitive lands for generations to come joined, from left, Brookhaven Town Supervisor Mark Lesko, Senator Lee Zeldin and Assemblyman Dean Murray at the July 15 Town of Brookhaven announcement of the acquisition of the Lake Grove School property. The parcel is sandwiched between two public land holdings: Southaven County Park to the west and a 23-acre Town-owned open space property to the east. The western boundary of the property is approximately 1,650 feet from the Carmans River.
New York State Senator Kenneth P. LaValle (R,C,I – Port Jefferson) said today the abuse of taxpayers by two outgoing school boards has prompted him to introduce legislation that would require a lame duck school board to have a supermajority vote in order to approve a contract for a new superintendent when the hiring occurs between the annual May vote and the annual reorganizational meeting of a local school board. Assemblyman Dan Losquadro (R,C -Shoreham) will sponsor the legislation in the Assembly.
“My legislation, “ Senator LaValle said, “will prevent these outrageous and unconscionable abuses of taxpayer dollars by requiring a supermajority vote by a board hoping to quickly push through the hiring of a school superintendent.”
New York State Senator Kenneth P. LaValle (R,C,I – Port Jefferson) said the Senate passed historic property tax relief legislation that enacts a cap on the growth of local property taxes. that will bring relief to long suffering tax payers. The Governor signed the bill into law Friday night (06/24).
“I have long been an advocate of a tax cap,” Senator LaValle said, “and the time has come for us to implement this law.”
New York State Senator Kenneth P. LaValle (R, C, I- Port Jefferson) said today that a bill he sponsored to establish naturopathic doctors as licensed professionals in New York State has passed the Senate. This legislation also includes specific requirements for the education and residency training for naturopaths, the creation of a state board for naturopathy, and continuing education provisions.
New York State Senator Kenneth P. LaValle said a bill to provide an incentive for the remediation of the Port Jefferson power plant and to create development of a new, state of the art facility on the site passed the New York State Senate today.
“This bill would encourage the development of a new or repowered facility in the Village of Port Jefferson to replace the existing plant and restore it with a modern, efficient power source,” Senator LaValle said, adding “we want to encourage competition and reliable, clean, low-cost energy that will benefit all Long Islanders.”
New York State Senator Kenneth P. LaValle said his bill capping school taxes for eligible senior citizens older than 70 years of age has passed the New York State Senate and will now go to the Assembly.
This bill amends the real property tax law by establishing a fixed real property school tax rate for persons 70 years of age or over who meet the requirements for the enhanced STAR exemption. Under the bill, residential real property owned and occupied by individuals who are 70 years of age or over; or by husband and wife, one of whom is seventy years of age or over and meets each of the requirements for the enhanced STAR exemption, will be eligible for a fixed real property school tax rate.
New York State Senator Kenneth P. LaValle said today that a bill he co-sponsored that provides freedom of choice to consumers who have coverage for prescribed drugs as part of their health insurance has passed the Senate and will now go to the Governor for his signature.
The bill, S3510, allows consumers to purchase prescription drugs from their local pharmacy despite an insurance company policy mandating a purchase from a specific mail order pharmacy.
“This legislation provides consumers with a choice,” Senator LaValle said, “as well as increased safety.”
New York State Senator Kenneth P. LaValle (R,C,I – Port Jefferson) said the Senate today passed the “Complete Streets” legislation which would help make roadways safer for all who use them. The bill (S.5411A), requires state, county, and local transportation agencies to consider roadway design features that increase the safety of pedestrians, bicyclists, and motorists. The bill unanimously passed the Senate.
New York State Senator Kenneth P. LaValle (R,C,I – Port Jefferson) said the Senate gave final legislative approval on Thursday June 16 to two measures that offer additional buffers and restrictions for protests or demonstrations seeking to disrupt military funerals, burials or memorial services. The bills balance the constitutional right of free speech with the ability of families to respectfully mourn the individuals who gave their lives in service to our country.
New York State Senator Kenneth P. LaValle (R,C,I – Port Jefferson) said today that his legislation to protect the Carmans River watershed and add approximately 1,000 acres of land to the Central Pine Barrens area has passed the New York State Senate by a vote of 60 – 0 and the Assembly 140-0.
New York State Senator Kenneth P. LaValle said today that the Senate passed a measure on June 16 that imposes mandatory jail time for individuals who choose to drive again under the influence of drugs or alcohol after having been previously convicted of such a crime. The bill (S.2597) is intended to increase the penalties for multiple DWI offenders.
“It is critical to the safety of motorists that we do our best to ensure that those who endanger the lives of others are kept off the road,” said Senator LaValle. “This measure will protect the public from drunk drivers by giving law enforcement additional tools to effectively prosecute recidivist drunk drivers.”
New York State Senator Kenneth P. LaValle (R,C,I – Port Jefferson) said his legislation that would make rates fair, just and transparent by requiring the Long Island Power Authority (LIPA) to seek approval by the Public Service Commission (PSC) if LIPA seeks a rate increase by more than two and a half percent per year has been passed by the Assembly and is headed to the Governor’s desk for his signature. If enacted, the PSC would be required to review and approve LIPA's rate increase requests before they are passed on to Long Island ratepayers. The bill was co-sponsored by Assemblyman Robert Sweeney.
LaValle introduced similar legislation in 2008 that passed both houses of the legislature but was vetoed by then Governor David Paterson.
New York State Senator Kenneth P. LaValle (R,C,I – Port Jefferson) said the Senate passed a bill (S.5560) today that significantly expands the ability of law enforcement to solve crimes by requiring those convicted of all felonies and misdemeanors to submit DNA samples.
The measure is supported by the District Attorneys across the state, crime victims’ advocates and Governor Andrew Cuomo.
“This bill would greatly enhance the DNA database and protect communities by keeping more criminals off the streets, while also reducing the financial costs and victims’ emotional strain by solving more crimes in an expeditious manner,” said LaValle, “for New Yorkers throughout the state, this legislation will provide an additional layer of safety.”
New York State Senator Kenneth P. LaValle (R, C, I-Port Jefferson) said today that his bill (S3101) enabling fire district commissioners who have excessive unexcused absences to be removed from office has passed the New York State Senate. The bill was passed on June 14. “Fire commissioners make most of the key decisions affecting fire and emergency medical service throughout New York State and sit on boards that have the authority to raise taxes and approve budgets to cover expenses including insurance, payroll, pensions and the purchase of trucks, and other equipment,” LaValle said. Commission members, LaValle explained, set policy for fire districts, hire staff who maintain firehouses and dispatch calls.
New York State Senator Kenneth P. LaValle said the Senate passed a bill enabling people who were adopted in New York but born in other states to participate in the New York State Adoption Registry. The bill (S.5145), passed on June 13, gives adoptees born in other states the same ability to access information as eligible New York-born adoptees. “The Adoption Registry can help a person learn more about their heritage, medical history and even potentially reunite with their birth family,” LaValle said.
New York State Senator Kenneth P. LaValle (R,C – Port Jefferson) said the Senate today passed a bill (S.5643) that will make it easier for law enforcement to crack down on texting-while-driving offenses and prevent tragic accidents caused by drivers distracted by texting. The bill represents an agreement with the State Assembly which is also expected to act on the legislation today. The bill would make text messaging while driving a primary violation rather than a secondary violation. Under the current law, a driver can only be cited for texting-while-driving if another violation, such as speeding, is also being cited.