On July 4th, we celebrate the birth of our Nation. Since 1776, when the Continental Congress adopted the Declaration of Independence in Philadelphia, people from around the world have left their homelands to come to America for freedom and opportunity.
July 1, 2015 (Brooklyn) – State Senator Simcha Felder, Chairman of the Senate Committee on Cities and former NYC Councilmember who instituted the recital of the Pledge of Allegiance before every Council meeting, issued the following statement:
Senator Felder (D – Brooklyn) joined Senator John Bonacic (R,C,I – Mt. Hope) to pass legislation to protect school children. Senate Bill S1634 amends the vehicle and traffic law by increasing the penalties for passing a stopped school bus.
“Passing a stopped school bus can, G-d forbid, kill or seriously injure children who may be getting on or off that bus,” said Senator Felder. “We must do everything in our power to ensure the safety of our children.”
Last week Senator Felder (D – Brooklyn) joined forces with Senator Marty Golden (R,C,I – Brooklyn) to pass legislation aimed at easing the tax burdens of the senior community.
Senate Bill S1074 increases the maximum income eligibility levels for real property tax exemptions for seniors for the first time since 1994. This legislation will allow seniors to receive increased relief from their local real property taxes.
“Our senior citizens play such a vital role in our communities,” said Senator Felder. “It is only right that we help ease their financial burdens by expanding eligibility for tax exemptions.”
In November of 2009, 12-year-old Brittany Passalacqua was brutally murdered along with her mother, Helen Buchel, in their home.
The perpetrator was John Edward Brown, a violent convicted felon who had been released from prison early after serving only 2 ½ years for assaulting his infant daughter in 2003. Brown had been put on parole just months before he committed the murders. We have a responsibility to keep our communities safe and these tragic deaths underscore the need for tougher penalties for violent offenders.
In a letter to Mayor Bill de Blasio, Senator Felder demanded that the City move swiftly to repair its streets to ensure the safety of New Yorkers. To date, more than 300,000 potholes have been reported to the Department of Transportation.
“The safety of our citizens is at stake,” Senator Felder stressed. “We are headed into the summer when more people will be out for their daily run, bike ride, or family outing. The City must hire outside contractors to get the work done immediately. Mayor de Blasio specifically allocated money for pothole repairs in his budget. It is time to actually use that money for its intended purpose.”
Betty Pollack was born in Louisville, Kentucky, and met her husband at Fort Knox while he was serving in the Army. After his military return from Korea, the couple moved to New York to live and raise their family.
Ms. Pollack was always a doting parent who was very involved in her children’s schools, helping to organize fundraising activities, assisting new parents and presiding over many school events.
“I congratulate Senator John Flanagan on being elected Senate Majority Leader” said Senator Felder. “As Chair of the NYC Education sub-committee I had the privilege of working with Senator Flanagan on passing the Education Investment Tax Credit in the Senate, securing funding for school transportation, and helping parents secure special education for their children. Senator Flanagan has a proven track record of supporting our community, and I know that as Majority Leader he will continue to fight for our needs.”
Senator Simcha Felder (D, Brooklyn), together with Assemblyman Michael Simanowitz of Queens, is calling on Mayor de Blasio to prevent the release of unclaimed bodies without prior written authorization by the deceased person or their next of kin.
"I commend Councilman David Greenfield and his colleagues in the New York City Council for proposing Introduction 65 to ensure the safety of non-public school children. Safety is a growing concern in every community, and all parents deserve to have peace of mind knowing that their children will be protected. We must do everything possible to keep all children safe."
Senator Felder thanked outgoing Major General Stephen J. Townsend, Commanding General of Fort Drum for his service to our nation and to the Fort Drum community, at a ceremony held in the New York State Senate in Albany.