"The Senate will return to session on Thursday, August 6th at 10 A.M. At that time we will take up legislation, including school governance for the City of New York and chapter amendments to the bill."
“With great sadness we learned this afternoon that after a long battle with cancer, former Senator Olga Mendez has passed away. Each of us had the opportunity and honor to serve with Senator Mendez. Over the course of her remarkable life, she broke down countless barriers, including her election as the first Puerto Rican woman to this great body. Senator Mendez was a powerful, passionate, and hard-working member of this chamber who will be remembered fondly as a champion for those whom she felt did not have a voice.”
Joined by LL Cool J and One Try Competition (OTC), I am excited to present the annual summer basketball tournament "Jump and Ball", which celebrates its fifth anniversary this year. This year’s tournament will take place from Saturday, August 2, 2008 through Sunday, August 31, 2008 at the Daniel O’Connell Park in St. Albans, Queens.
“Our investments in education are among the most important responsibilities before the Senate, and we applaud the selection of Dr. David Steiner by the Board of Regents as our state’s new education commissioner and President of the University of the State of New York.
(Albany, NY)- Today, Senate President Malcolm A. Smith announced the nomination of Senator Craig M. Johnson (D-Nassau) to serve on the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) Capital Program Review Board. The nomination was made this past weekend, notice was given to the MTA and the appointment is pending the filing of the appropriate paperwork with the Governor’s office.
(Albany, NY) Just days after new research from the Women’s Health Initiative, a long-term study of 140,000 women, indicated clear health benefits relating to breastfeeding for the mother and newborn, the New York State Senate has passed the Breastfeeding Mothers’ Bill of Rights (S1107A).
Economic Development & Job Creation Initiatives Mark Legislative Session
(Albany, NY) After passing unprecedented rules reforms that fundamentally change the operation of the State Senate and open up the legislative process, the New York State Senate continued today to advance economic development and job growth initiatives. Action was taken today on hundreds of bills that benefit local municipalities and strengthen programs that will lead to the revitalization of communities across the state.
This morning we have achieved real, historic reforms to make the state Senate more open, accountable and inclusive. These changes will empower all 62 Senators to serve the best interests of their constituents.
After months of discussion, we put these reforms into the Senate rules and began the process of restoring the peoples’ faith and confidence in our state government. No longer will the Senate be run by leaders making all the decisions.
Prohibits the use of portable electronic devices while driving
(Albany, NY)- Today, the New York State Senate passed S3619A/Dilan, legislation that will make New York’s roads and highways safer by, among other provisions, banning the practice of texting and using other electronic devices while driving.
In addition to the texting ban, the legislation includes a number of important provisions that will make the roadways safer by implementing sensible requirements for young drivers, including:
“The next Chairman of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) must understand how to meet the needs of the largest transit system in the world; one that brings people to their jobs, students to school, and connects communities across the region.
With oversight responsibility and jurisdiction vested in the Senate, it is our responsibility to make sure the next MTA Chairman can run the ship better than his predecessors. As the recent MTA bailout debate proved – the MTA needs new management and must deliver greater transparency and accountability.
“On July 9th, the New York State Senate returned to session, worked into the early hours of the following morning and passed 135 bills vital to the economic well-being of local governments across the state. If these bills were not passed, New York faced the potential loss of billions in revenue and hundreds of thousands of jobs.
“Extraordinary times call for extraordinary action. We applaud and congratulate Governor Paterson’s bold decision to appoint Richard Ravitch as Lieutenant Governor and help end the gridlock in the Senate.
“There are a number of public proposals regarding a governing agreement for the Senate which the Democratic Conference will be discussing tomorrow. We are encouraged by the progress that has been made thus far and will continue to bridge the gap on a reasonable solution that will allow the Senate to get back to passing legislation critical to millions of New Yorkers.”
“Two hundred and thirty-three years ago, on this day, a band of courageous patriots representing the hearts and minds of the new world gave birth to our nation. Founded upon the sacred principles of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, an idea was born- one that has lit the world for over two centuries.
"The Senate Democratic Conference has informed Senators Skelos and Espada that we would like to conduct a public leaders meeting tomorrow which will allow us the time to work on arrangements and an agenda to ensure a productive negotiation."
(Albany, NY)- Today, a three-week long stalemate which had stalled all legislation in the Senate came to an end as the Senate Majority obtained the 32 votes necessary to achieve quorum and began to pass critical legislation. After obtaining a quorum through the presence of 32 members in the Chamber, and with Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins as the Presiding Officer, the Senate unanimously passed major and non-controversial legislation. If these bills were not passed, New York faced the potential loss of billions in revenue and hundreds of thousands of jobs.
“Obviously this is an extraordinary situation and tempers are flaring, but we must maintain a level of civility and decorum befitting a Senator and representative of the people of New York,” said Senate President and Majority Leader Malcolm A. Smith and Democratic Conference Leader John L. Sampson.
“It is with great personal sadness that myself and millions of other fans learned this evening of the passing of Michael Jackson. It is always a tragedy to lose someone at such a young age, but it is particularly difficult when children lose a parent like this. Michael transcended race and genre in his music, and brought joy to millions through his art. His contributions to the music and entertainment industry are immeasurable, and our thoughts and prayers are with his family, friends and fans across the globe at this time.”
Thank you to all of those who participated in the New York State Senate's fist ever online Town Hall. Since we're always striving to serve the people of New York better, and this was our first attempt at an event like this, we would appreciate your feedback on how we can improve the experience.