Malcolm A. Smith's Press releases

Smith Applauds Spitzer For Businesslike Approach In First Budget

The first Executive Budget prepared by Governor Eliot Spitzer "takes a very businesslike approach to solving the severe problems confronting New York State," Senate Democratic Leader Malcolm A. Smith said today. Smith compared the Governor to a Chief Executive Officer of a $120 billion firm. "In order to turn around a struggling company, you've got to demand proper planning, elimination of waste, increased efficiency and greater accountability.

January 31, 2007
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Senate Democratic Leader Applauds Reforms Notes Senate GOP Slow To Embrace Change

Senate Democratic Leader Malcolm A. Smith today praised the ethics reform agreement reached by Governor Spitzer and legislative leaders.

"The steps we've taken today will help to put New York back on the right track," Smith said. "I am pleased that the Governor was able to use his mandate to bring everyone to the table and put an agreement in place."

Smith noted that SenateMinority have long advocated an agenda of reform, but have been stymied by the Senate's Majority.

January 25, 2007
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Senate Minority Targets Tax Relief To Those Who Need It Most Amendments Would First Help Struggling Seniors And Working Families

SenateMinority unveiled two amendments to theMajority property tax rebate plan (S.1-A) scheduled to be debated and voted on today. The amendments would better target tax relief to those who need it most – primarily senior citizens and middle class working families who have been hit hardest by skyrocketing property taxes.

January 22, 2007
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Senate Minority Hosts Hearing On Judicial Diversity Forum At St. John's Second In A Series On Issue

The SenateMinority hosted a public hearing at St. John's University Law School today, taking testimony from judicial experts on how to increase diversity in the State's court system and make it more reflective of the people of New York State.

January 18, 2007
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The Senate Minority Calls For Reform Of Senate Rules Good Government Groups Offer Support For Senate Minority Proposals

ALBANY—The Senate'sMinority Conference today proposed changes to the Senate rules that would bring greater integrity to the legislative body, making it more accountable, more transparent, and more democratic. Good government groups, including the Brennan Center for Justice, the League of Women Voters, Common Cause, the New York Public Interest Research Group and Citizens' Union circulated a letter to all State Senators, calling on them to support the rules reforms offered by the Senate Minority. TheSenate Minorityproposals would prohibit Senators from accepting gifts and wo

January 16, 2007
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Statement From Senate Democratic Leader Malcolm A. Smith On The Budget Reforms Proposed Today By Governor Spitzer

"The SenateMinorityConference has long advocated budget reform measures that would increase accountability, fairness and transparency in the budget process.

January 16, 2007
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The Senate Majority Vote Down Rules Reforms

SenateMajority tonight rejected important reforms that would have made the Senate more open and accountable to the public, more effective in its deliberations and less expensive to the taxpayers of New York.

 

The SenateMinority Conference had proposed changes to the rules of the Majority-controlled State Senate which have been manipulated over the years to create a cloak of secrecy around the Senate and to centralize power in the hands of the Majority Leader, leaving rank and file members with few, if any, responsibilities.

January 16, 2007
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Joint Statement From Senate Democratic Leader Malcolm A. Smith And Judiciary Democratic Ranker Ruth Hassell-Thompson On The Appointment Of Justice Theodore Jones Jr. To The Court Of Appeals

         Senate Democratic Leader Malcolm Smith said "While Governor Spitzermade it quite clear that race would not be a factor in his judicial appointments, he also made it clear that he values a diverse judiciary. The appointment of Judge Jones is a clear indication that Governor Spitzer will set out to create a judiciary that is respected and trusted by all the people of New York State."

January 14, 2007
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Statement By Senate Democratic Leader Malcolm A. Smith In Response To The State Commission On Health Care Facilities In The 21st Century

Clearly, we have a broken health care system desperately in need of reform and revitalization and the Commission’s recommendations ought to be carefully considered as we head down the road towards restructuring our health care network and recovering the costs of inefficiencies.

January 1, 2007
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The Senate Minority Holds Public Hearing On Judicial Diversity

Smith’s first public hearing featured testimony from a varied group of experts, including judges, attorneys, legal scholars, good government groups, law enforcement officials, political party leaders, civil rights organizations and judicial reform advocates.

Among those offering testimony were: The Honorable Ann Pfau, First Deputy Chief Administrative Assistant of the New York State Office of Court Administration; former State Sen. John R. Dunne, vice-chair of the Committee for Modern Courts; John E.

December 4, 2006
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Statement From Senator Malcolm A. Smith On World Aids Day

It is important on World AIDS Day to think not just about all those who have had their lives cut short by this disease, but also to consider the devastation AIDS has wrought all across the world. AIDS has killed more than 25 million people since the first case was reported in 1981, making it one of the most destructive epidemics in recorded history. If we don't take action, another 117-million people will die due to AIDS in the next 25 years. Despite these frightening numbers, only one in 10 infected children who needs treatment is actually receiving it, and two you

December 1, 2006
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Op-ed For The New York Post

The tragic death of Sean Bell, and the shooting of Trent Benefield and Joe Guzman, gives us pause to contemplate how fragile and precious human life is. Sean’s death has taken a terrible toll on his family and friends, and we pray for his parents, fiancée and especially his two young children. I am also deeply concerned about the impact this tragedy has had on our community. Many people in our city are justifiably angered by this tragedy. We all recognize, as the mayor has already noted, that firing 50 shots in this situation was excessive.

November 28, 2006
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Senator Malcolm A. Smith Unanimously Chosen To Lead Senate Democrats

Senator Malcolm A. Smith was unanimously elected by his colleagues today to be the next leader of the Senate's Minority Conference. He will officially assume the post January 1, when the current leader,David A. Paterson, is sworn in as Lt. Governor. Smith, first elected to the State Senate in 2000, said the coming legislative session will be a pivotal one for the Minority Conference and New York State.

November 21, 2006
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Senator Smith Applauds Health Insurance Parity For Autism

State Senator Malcolm A. Smith (D-Queens) today praised a new law extending health insurance coverage to children diagnosed with autism, a neurobiological condition. Under existing law, many health insurance plans that routinely cover similar neurobiological disorders do not cover autism treatment. "Timing is especially critical in addressing this medical condition, which typically appears during the first three years of life, affecting a child’s ability to communicate and learn," said Senator Smith.

September 15, 2006
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Senate Approves September 11th License Plate Bill

New Yorkers wishing to remember the events of September 11, 2001, will have a new way of doing so, thanks to Senate passage of a bill co-sponsored by Senator Malcolm A. Smith (D-Queens).

The bill, S.8035A, creates the distinctive "September 11, 2001, Remembrance" license plate, which will be available for issuance upon request by the Department of Motor Vehicles. Eighty percent of the annual $25 service charge will go to the World Trade Center Memorial Scholarship Program, which will provide scholarship money for the families of September 11 victims.

July 5, 2006
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Senator Malcolm Smith Supports Cut In State Tax On Gasoline To Provide New Yorkers Relief At The Pumps

Senator Malcolm Smith (D-Queens) today announced his support of capping New York’s state tax on gasoline to provide immediate and much-needed reductions in pump prices for New Yorkers, while renewing calls for a comprehensive state and national policy to reduce energy consumption and replace fossil fuels in the next ten years. "While capping state taxes on gasoline offers New Yorkers some short-term relief, the bigger issue is finding ways to reduce consumption and replacing finite energy resources like coal, oil and natural gas with cheaper, renewable energy sources," said Senator

May 22, 2006
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Senator Malcolm Smith Announces $50,000 Funding For Greenstreet Project In Queens

State Senator Malcolm Smith (D-Queens) today announced that the Queens Department of Parks & Recreation will receive $50,000 toward a Greenstreet project in Queens. The funding will be used for planting and landscaping. "I am thrilled that there will be another Greenstreet project in Queens. The beautification of our city streets is certainly a necessity and will benefit the entire community," said Senator Smith. The Queens lawmaker noted that he began a beautification project in Queens known as the "Adopt a Strip" program over a year ago.

May 16, 2006
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State Senator Malcolm Smith Urges Suny Chancellor To Include Minority And Women Owned Businesses In Procurement Activities

State Senator Malcolm Smith (D-Queens) today released a letter he recently wrote to SUNY Chancellor John Ryan regarding the Legislature’s review of SUNY’s procurement process. In his letter the Senator details his concerns over SUNY’s effort in contracting with minority and women owned businesses. "I felt the need to reach out to Chancellor Ryan to share my distress over the lack of outreach to minority and women’s businesses. I think it is important that we examine this issue and encourage SUNY to take a look at its contracting practices," said Senator Smith.

May 9, 2006
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State Senator Malcolm Smith Votes For Override To Increase Funds For School-based Health Centers

State Senator Malcolm Smith (D-Queens) today voted to override the Governor’s veto of $3.4 million to fund New York’s school-based Health Centers. SBHCs provide on-site primary care and mental health services, serving over 200,000 students in the highest-need areas of the state. "Without a doubt, school-based health centers have proven to be one of the most effective programs in New York’s public health care system," said Senator Smith. "My Senate colleagues and I fought hard this year, like we do every year, to increase funding for these exemplary health clinics.

May 2, 2006
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State Senator Malcolm Smith : Vital Funds For Public Safety Programs Added To State Budget

State Senator Malcolm Smith (D-Queens) today announced that the Legislature added millions of dollars in funding to the State budget for programs that enhance public safety and aid victims of violent crime. "Programs that protect victims of domestic violence and sexual assault are important in every corner of New York. That’s why I worked diligently this year to ensure that funds were distributed across the state for programs that provide services to victims, and assist law enforcement in investigating predators," said Senator Smith.

April 24, 2006
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