As lawmakers prepare to head back to the Capitol for the upcoming Legislative Session, State Senator Patty Ritchie is inviting her constituents to weigh in on issues facing New York State through her 2015 Legislative Survey.
Available here, the survey asks individuals to voice their opinions on major topics including government spending, Common Core, agriculture, college tuition, job creation and others.
“As State Senator, it’s my top priority to make the voices of my constituents heard and to represent their views in Albany,” said State Senator Patty Ritchie.
“I’m eager to hear the opinions of the people in Central and Northern New York whom I represent on the major issues—everything from education to government spending—in an effort to make sure I’m accurately representing their interests when I head back to Albany.”
New Year’s Eve is a time to reflect on the past year and celebrate the 365 days to come. Whether you’re heading out tojoin friends and family or hosting a gathering in your own home, it’s important that you plan ahead to stay safe as you ring in the New Year:
State Senator Patty Ritchie joined North Country Family Health Center staff and board members recently, as the organization thanked UnitedHealthcare Community Plan of New York for $200,000 in grants aimed at making improvements at the facility.
Landmark New Law Latest in Effort to Combat the Disease That’s Claimed Lives in CNY;Focuses Health Experts on Finding Vaccine
State Senator Patty Ritchie today announced that the Governor has signed into law her bill to help speed the discovery of potentially life-saving vaccines for deadly diseases including Eastern Equine Encephalitis, the mosquito-borne virus that’s claimed five lives in Oswego County and Central New York. The measure (S.2115), which passed both houses of the Legislature with overwhelming bipartisan support, creates a new “21st Century Workgroup for Disease Elimination and Reduction” within the state Department of Health. Comprising experts in diseases, infection and public health, the group is tasked with identifying obstacles that may be preventing development of effective vaccines for EEE and other diseases, including West Nile Virus, Lyme disease, tuberculosis and more.
State Senator Patty Ritchie is applauding nearly $144 million in new, job-creating Regional Economic Development Council (REDC) investments awarded to projects across Central and Northern New York.
Awards were announced Thursday at a special event held at the Capitol. At the event, the North Country—which includes Jefferson and St. Lawrence County—was awarded $63.4 million. The Central New York region, which includes Oswego County, was named a “Top Performer” and was awarded $80. 2 million through the annual economic growth competition. The new investments bring the four-year total of REDC awards for the two regions to roughly $691.2 million.
“Throughout the past four years, the Regional Economic Development Council awards have been a catalyst for tremendous growth in the regions I represent; giving key projects the support they need to get off the ground, create jobs and bolster their local economies,” said Senator Ritchie.
When it comes to the holiday shopping season, the couple weeks before Christmas can feel like crunch time. While online retailers and big box stores can offer seemingly endless options, it often times can be a struggle to find the perfect gift. As you continue to check items off your list, I encourage you to shop local this holiday season.
Receives Nod for Fourth Consecutive Year for Support of Agriculture Industry
In recognition of her strong support for our state’s agriculture industry, State Senator Patty Ritchie was named to the New York Farm Bureau’s “Circle of Friends” for the fourth consecutive year.
“As New York’s leading industry, agriculture is vitally important to the economic success of our state. Not only that, but in many families, farming is a tradition, passed down from generation to generation,” said Senator Ritchie, who chairs the Senate Agriculture Committee.
“As someone who grew up on a farm and the representative of a region that is largely rural, I am thrilled to once again receive this special recognition. As the 2015 Legislative Session approaches, I am looking forward to continuing to work closely with the Farm Bureau in an effort to further expand the industry and provide a boost to our hardworking farm families.”
As Chair of the Senate Agriculture Committee Senator Ritchie has led the charge to repeal costly mandates affecting farmers, restore budget cuts to programs utilized by those in the industry, launch new initiatives to protect the future of agriculture and cut red tape and to help ensure farming remains a viable profession in New York state.
State Senator Patty Ritchie visited St. Lawrence-Lewis BOCES Northwest Tech in Ogdensburg recently to talk about educational opportunities available to young people across Northern and Central New York.
During her visit, Senator Ritchie toured programs for students in several fields of study, including cosmetology, welding, graphics and criminal justice.
Lowering Costs to Taxpayers by Recruiting Local Experts
State Senator Patty Ritchie is once again turning to leaders of local government, including newly elected members of the St. Lawrence County Board of legislators, to help eliminate unfunded state mandates and reduce costs for local taxpayers.
Senator Ritchie announced that she has named County Legislator Joe Lightfoot of Oswegatchie, and incoming Legislators David Forsythe of Lisbon and Larry Denesha of DeKalb to her Mandate Relief Working Group, which she created in 2011 to help deliver on her promise to reduce expensive mandates that drive up costs for counties and local governments. The group will be co-chaired by St. Lawrence County Legislator Kevin Acres of Madrid and Lightfoot.
Since then, the panel of city, county, village, town and school leaders has proposed two dozen recommendations, and several have been enacted into law.
With the help of dozens of families, individuals, schools and local organizations, State Senator Patty Ritchie has sent nearly 8,000 cards to troops through the “Holiday Mail for Heroes” program.
Sponsored by the American Red Cross, Holiday Mail for Heroes collects holiday cards, personally signed by donors, to distribute to service members at military bases, veterans’ hospitals and other locations to let them know their sacrifices are appreciated by those back home.
“During the holidays it’s so important to let the people who make a difference in our lives know we care—and that includes our troops,” said Senator Ritchie.
Thank you for your wonderful contribution to the Thanksgiving Day Creative Celebration. We received outstanding poems, essays, and artwork that exemplify the creativity of New York State’s young people.
The submissions received are remarkable in what they represent – showing gratitude and respect for family, friends, our troops fighting overseas, and many other important subjects and activities. I am humbled and honored to see such inspiring contributions in response to what is a deceptively difficult question: “What are you thankful for?”
On behalf of the New York State Senate, I would like to offer my wholehearted congratulations to all of the participants in this year’s Thanksgiving Day Creative Celebration.
State Senator Patty Ritchie has announced she has secured $50,000 in capital funding to assist the Hepburn Library of Madrid with much needed repairs to steps leading to the library’s main entrance.
“Libraries are essential parts of communities across our state, especially in rural areas like ours,” said Senator Ritchie. “I am thrilled to be able to provide this funding which will allow the Hepburn Library of Madrid make the necessary upgrades to ensure everyone has access to the wonderful entertainment and educational resources the library provides.”
Funding Announced Following Fire That Destroyed Historic Block
State Senator Patty Ritchie has announced she has secured $100,000 in capital funding to assist with the rebuilding of the Wellesley Island Fire Station following a devastating fire which happened last August at Thousand Island Park.
“For more than a century, Thousand Island Park has stood as a tight knit community where families and individuals go to spend quality time near the majestic St. Lawrence River,” said Senator Ritchie. “The fire that took place last August was truly devastating—destroying key parts of the community, including the fire station, which residents count on to help keep them safe. I am pleased to be able to provide this funding, which will help the area rebuild to become better and safer than ever before.”
$225,000 To Help Waterfront, Rt. 37 Corridor Growth
State Senator Patty Ritchie has announced $225,000 in capital funding for the City of Ogdensburg waterfront projects including repairs to the Maple City Trail at The Crescent and the Greenbelt boat launch.
Aid will also be made available to support enhancements in the Marina District and a new loop that improves water service and fire protection at the International Order of Odd Fellows Hall on Linden Street and the City’s Southside.
“Ogdensburg’s Maple City Trail and Crescent Park provide a relaxing place for families to enjoy one of the most beautiful places in Northern New York. These funds will help the city repair some of the damages caused by last spring’s Oswegatchie River flooding,” Senator Ritchie said. “Repairing the boat launch and the trail will help bring more boaters and visitors to Ogdensburg’s waterfront as part of the City’s long term economic development plan to bring new jobs and businesses to its shoreline.”