Thomas F. O'Mara's Press releases

O'Mara-sponsored legislation to encourage growth of industrial hemp signed into law ~ Cornell University researchers, Farm Bureau, other farm advocates see economic opportunity

Albany, N.Y., December 18— Legislation sponsored by State Senator Tom O’Mara (R,C-Big Flats) and Assemblywoman Donna Lupardo (D-Endwell) to make New York the 16th state in the nation to establish a framework for growing industrial hemp as a way to diversify and strengthen the state’s leading agricultural industry, has been signed into law by Governor Andrew Cuomo.

The legislation (S.7047/A.8297, Chapter 524 of the Laws of 2014) was approved by the Legislature in June.  It authorizes a pilot program to allow hemp production for research to begin immediately by the state Department of Agriculture and Markets, and state colleges and universities. 

December 18, 2014
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O'Mara named to Farm Bureau 'Circle of Friends' for commitment to New York's farm families

Elmira, N.Y., December 11—State Senator Tom O’Mara (R,I,C-Big Flats) has been named to the 2014 New York Farm Bureau "Circle of Friends" -- an honorary organization formed in 1990 by the state’s leading farm advocacy organization to recognize state legislators who strongly support agriculture.  

The Farm Bureau represents more than 35,000 member farm families statewide.

December 11, 2014
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'Small Business Saturday' ~ November 29, 2014 ~ A reminder to 'shop small' this holiday season

You hear it all the time, especially in government where we debate constantly about how best to create jobs and strengthen local economies: small businesses are the backbone of the economy.

That's as true as it’s ever been and so is the fact that Albany and Washington can take steps to help improve the economic climate for our small businesses. That’s especially true right here in New York State, where businesses large and small continue to face one of the worst business tax climates in the nation. 

November 24, 2014
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Happy Thanksgiving

To all of the families, residents and communities of the 58th Senate District across the Southern Tier and Finger Lakes regions: my very best wishes for an enjoyable and safe, meaningful and memorable Thanksgiving holiday. ~ NYS Senator Tom O'Mara

Read more on the history of Thanksgiving, including President George Washington's Thanksgiving Proclamation from October 3, 1789 and President Abraham Lincoln's Thanksgiving Proclamation from October 3, 1863: "From the Archives: Thanksgiving with the Presidents."

November 24, 2014
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O'Mara issues reminder on correction officer recruitment ~ Deadline for submitting application is November 25 ~ Find out more

Elmira, N.Y., November 21—State Senator Tom O’Mara (R-C, Big Flats) reminded area residents today that the New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision (DOCCS) is currently undertaking a statewide correction officer recruitment effort.

A state Civil Service examination to fill new positions has been scheduled for January 10, 2015.  

Anyone interested in taking the exam must file an application by next Tuesday, November 25, 2014.

November 21, 2014
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A Proud Tradition of Giving ~ The Venison Donation Coalition

The Southern Zone regular deer hunting season begins at sunrise on Saturday, November 15, 2014 and concludes on Sunday, December 7, 2014.

Read more details online at the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation.

Please keep safety in mind.

November 10, 2014
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Regional bicycle, pedestrian trail projects awarded funding

Elmira, N.Y., October 30—Several bicycle, pedestrian and multi-use path transportation projects across the Southern Tier and Finger Lakes regions will receive a total of more than $3 million in federal transportation aid, according to State Senator Tom O'Mara (R,C,I-Big Flats).

The awards were announced earlier this week in Albany as part of a package of more than $70 million in statewide project awards. 

O'Mara said that projects in Chemung, Steuben, Tompkins and Yates counties in his 58th Senate District will receive funding.

October 30, 2014
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Area counties in line for emergency response funding

Elmira, N.Y., October 17—State Senator Tom O’Mara (R,C-Big Flats) said that each of the counties he represents as part of New York’s 58th Senate District will receive public safety grants as part of a new package of $10 million in statewide funding to support local emergency response operations.

The grants are administered by the state Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services (DHSES) and go to support localities that operate 9-1-1 response and emergency service dispatch operations.  

October 17, 2014
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O'Mara: Key planks of Senate's 'Young Farmers NY' strategy take effect, new grant fund and college loan forgiveness

Elmira, N.Y., October 14—State Senator Tom O’Mara (R-C, Big Flats), a member of the Senate Agriculture Committee, said today that two key provisions of a comprehensive “Young Farmers NY” program that he and his Senate colleagues unveiled earlier this year, which were enacted as part of the 2014-15 state budget, are now in effect.

The “Young Farmers NY” strategy, which O’Mara co-sponsored, combined financial and educational initiatives and incentives aimed at keeping New York State’s leading industry competitive for the next generation.  

October 14, 2014
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State begins 'Combat Heroin' campaign called for under new anti-heroin laws approved earlier this year

Elmira, N.Y., September 23—A new state law co-sponsored by State Senator Tom O’Mara (R,C-Big Flats) earlier this year was set in motion yesterday with the announcement of a  new “Combat Heroin” campaign to help educate and inform the public about the dangers of heroin and prescription opioid use.

September 23, 2014
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Business Council gives O'Mara high grade on 2013-14 legislative rankings

Albany, N.Y., September 17—State Senator Tom O’Mara (R-C, Big Flats) has received a strong vote of confidence from the state’s largest business advocacy organization, The Business Council of New York State, for his commitment to a legislative agenda focused on “economic growth, good jobs and strong communities.”  

O’Mara’s 89% score is the third-highest ranking in the Senate.

September 17, 2014
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O'Mara-sponsored legislation to combat invasive species signed into law

Albany, N.Y., September 2 —Legislation sponsored by Senator Tom O’Mara (R,C-Big Flats) and Assemblywoman Barbara Lifton (D/WF-125th District) to help stop the spread of aquatic invasive species throughout the Southern Tier and Finger Lakes regions and statewide, has been signed into law by Governor Andrew Cuomo. 

September 2, 2014
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O'Mara earns high grade from Upstate NY advocacy organization, Unshackle Upstate singles out commitment to tax cuts, job creation (UPDATED)

Elmira, N.Y., August 19—State Senator Tom O’Mara (R-C, Big Flats) has received the Senate’s second-highest ranking, 93%, from Unshackle Upstate on the group’s 2014 Legislative Scorecard.

[see the attached articles below from the August 20th Elmira Star-Gazette and Hornell Evening Tribune

Unshackle Upstate is a pro-jobs, pro-taxpayer advocacy organization comprised of business and trade organizations representing every Upstate region.  

August 19, 2014
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O'Mara, colleagues call for using settlement funds to cut taxes, create jobs, help schools

Elmira, N.Y., July 7—State Senator Tom O’Mara (R,C,I-Big Flats) today joined his Senate Republican colleagues to call for New York State to use its share of a recent settlement to accelerate state tax cuts, invest in Upstate job creation, and provide assistance to local schools and property taxpayers.

The U.S. Justice Department and state regulators recently announced a settlement with BNP Paribas, France’s largest bank, resulting in a record fine of nearly $9 billion for violations of U.S. sanctions and other misconduct.  

July 7, 2014
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A local veteran will lead the state Veterans of Foreign Wars

Throughout this upcoming July 4th holiday weekend, we'll be expressing our patriotism and celebrating American independence -- which means that we'll be remembering and thanking all of our veterans, past and present, for their sacrifice and service.

With that in mind, congratulations to one of the region's most well-known veterans, William "Doc" Schmitz of Corning, who's been named the New York Department Commander of the state Veterans of Foreign Wars.  

July 2, 2014
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O'Mara: Sign up for emergency preparedness training on July 12th in Hornell

Hornell, N.Y., July 9—State Senator Tom O’Mara (R,C-Big Flats) reminded area residents today that the online registration process is underway for a state-sponsored “Citizen Preparedness Corps Training Program” at Hornell High School on Saturday, July 12,  2014.

The program is free of charge but participants must complete the online registration prior to the event.  According to the office of Governor Andrew Cuomo, registration is limited and will be accepted on a first-come, first-served basis.

July 2, 2014
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Weekend's weather forecast looks great ~ Making plans? Remember that Saturday and Sunday are "free fishing days" across the region, statewide

Elmira, N.Y., June 27—State Senator Tom O’Mara (R,C-Big Flats) today reminded area residents and families that this Saturday and Sunday, June 28-29, have been designated as “Free Fishing Days” throughout the Southern Tier and Finger Lakes regions, and statewide.

O’Mara said that residents and visitors to the state can fish for free, without a fishing license, in any of  the region’s lakes, ponds, rivers and streams.

June 27, 2014
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Schuyler County awarded state funding to assist soil and water quality practices on area farms

Watkins  Glen, N.Y., June 26—State Senator Tom O’Mara (R,C-Big Flats) said today that Schuyler County received the highest statewide funding level under the latest round of state grants to help New York State farmers implement enhanced soil and water conservation practices.

June 26, 2014
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Local public libraries awarded construction grants

Elmira, N.Y., June 25—State Senator Tom O’Mara (R,C-Big Flats), Assemblyman Phil Palmesano (R,C,I-Corning) and Assemblyman Chris Friend (R-Big Flats) recently announced that public libraries throughout their legislative districts have been awarded state library construction grants.he area legislators said that the grants are being awarded through New York’s Library Construction Grant Program.

June 25, 2014
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Anti-heroin legislation signed into law, O'Mara co-sponsors actions to 'try to save lives'

Albany, N.Y., June 23—Legislation co-sponsored by State Senator Tom O’Mara (R,C-Big Flats) to enact a series of anti-heroin initiatives responding to the growing heroin crisis across the Southern Tier and Finger Lakes regions, and statewide, has been signed into law by Governor Andrew Cuomo.

The bill signing took place at Binghamton University. The legislation was approved by both houses of the Legislature last week.  

June 23, 2014
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