Tony Avella's Press releases

Release: Senate Passes Avella Bill Expanding Green Homes Tax Credit

(QUEENS, NY) State Senator Tony Avella announced today that his bill that would allow homeowners to apply for a “green buildings tax credit” unanimously passed the Senate.

The legislation (S.3945) would make “green building tax credits” more accessible to homeowners whose homes have been certified as “green” by the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) or Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED). These tax credits would provide an incentive for more homeowners to build environmentally-friendly houses.

May 12, 2015
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Release: Avella Commends Denial of Pan-Am Contract, Demands Action from Mayor

(QUEENS, NY) Today, State Senator Tony Avella praised New York City Comptroller Scott Stringer’s decision to deny a contract that would have established a permanent homeless shelter at the former Pan-Am Hotel. In a letter to Mayor Bill de Blasio, Senator Avella also formally called on the Mayor to immediately replace City Department of Homeless Services (DHS) Commissioner Gilbert Taylor due to his inaction and inability to take charge of the City’s increasing homelessness and shelter problems.

May 12, 2015
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Release: Avella Praises Stopping Sale of Lumber Liquidators Flooring

(QUEENS, NY) Today, State Senator Tony Avella, Vice Chair of the Senate Environmental Conservation Committee, commended Lumber Liquidators’ decision to immediately halt the sale of certain Chinese-made laminate flooring that was recently found to contain dangerously high levels of formaldehyde.

The company announced Thursday that it was suspending the sale of the controversial flooring that caused them to come under fire after a “60 Minutes” report aired in March showed that the product contained extremely high levels of the chemical. Formaldehyde can pose serious health risks – including coughing, nausea and dizziness – and has been linked to certain types of cancer, if exposed for long periods of time.

May 8, 2015
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Release: Avella Announces 3rd Ave Exit Opening

(QUEENS, NY) State Senator Tony Avella today announced that the 3rd Avenue Exit of the Whitestone Expressway has finally been reopened to all traffic.

May 8, 2015
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Release: Avella Gives $100,000 to Bayside Historical Society

(BAYSIDE, NY) Today, State Senator Tony Avella was joined by Paul DiBenedetto, President of the Bayside Historical Society, to present the organization with a $100,000 grant.

Senator Avella obtained the money for the Bayside Historical Society from this year’s state budget and will help the group cover operating costs. The funding is part of more than $1.3 million Senator Avella secured for programs and organizations through his district and across the borough of Queens. The historical society was in desperate need of additional funding in order to continue operating, and the money provided by Senator Avella will allow the organization to continue serving the community.

May 7, 2015
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Release: Avella Announces Opening of 11th Avenue

(QUEENS, NY) Today, State Senator Tony Avella announced that 11th Avenue in College Point will be reopened to the public Friday after months of construction to repair sewer pipes.

The stretch of roadway between 130th and 132nd Streets has been closed to residents for more than a year as the City Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) made improvements to the sewer system for residents along 11th Avenue and to the Tallman Island Water Pollution Control Plant. When the project began, DEP anticipated the work to be completed by the fall of 2014, but the opening of the roadway was pushed back by several setbacks in the process.

May 7, 2015
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Release: Avella Gives $210,000 Grant to Udalls Cove Preservation Committee

(QUEENS, NY) On Saturday, April 25th, State Senator Tony Avella was proud to present a check for $210,000 to the Udalls Cove Preservation Committee.

The money was allocated by Senator Avella from this year’s state budget and is part of more than $1.3 million he secured for programs and organizations throughout Queens. The money will allow the organization to purchase another portion of the wetlands reserve, further protecting the area from destruction or development.

April 28, 2015
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Release: Avella Marks Earth Day by Introducing Battery Recycling Bill

(ALBANY, NY) Today, State Senator Tony Avella was joined by Eliot Seol, an 11-year-old student from Queens, to introduce a bill (S.4522) that would require New York State to establish a recycling stewardship program for all “single use” batteries. The bill was drafted by Senator Avella, who serves as Vice Chair of the Senate Environmental Conservation Committee, after Eliot brought the idea to the Senator’s attention.

April 22, 2015
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Release: Senate Passes Avella's Mute Swan Bill

On Earth Day, State Senator Tony Avella announced that the New York State Senate passed his bill aimed at protecting mute swans.

For the second year in a row, the Senate passed Senator Avella’s bill (S.1555) that would place a two year moratorium on the state Department of Environmental Conservation’s (DEC) plan to completely eradicate New York State’s entire mute swan population. Since DEC announced the controversial plan in 2013, declaring the species “invasive,” it has been met with criticism from animal rights activists and various lawmakers. Senator Avella has led the fight by calling on DEC to rethink their eradication plan and instead implement a non-lethal method for controlling the mute swan population, which currently amounts to 2,200 birds throughout the state.

April 22, 2015
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Release: Avella Denounces Plans for Vacant Whitestone Lot

(QUEENS, NY) State Senator Tony Avella today called on the developer of a vacant lot in Whitestone to immediately abandon recently-announced plans to construct more than 100 townhomes on the property.

Edgestone Group, LLC, which owns the 15-acre lot located at 151-45 6th Road, announced at a meeting Tuesday night that the company plans to build 107 townhouses on the empty site, formerly known as the Bayrock property. This plan would bring a total of 203 new residential units to the neighborhood, nearly four times the number of units that was agreed upon in 2008 when the community board and City Council negotiated a plan for 52 single-family homes to be constructed at the site.

April 22, 2015
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Release: Avella Introduces Bill Prohibiting Import, Possession, Sale or Transport of "Big Five African Species"

(NEW YORK, NY) Today, State Senator Tony Avella was joined by activists from Friends of Animals, League of Human Voters, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals and other animal rights groups as he announced the introduction of a bill (S.4686) that would ban the import, possession, sale or transportation in New York of the “Big Five African Species.”

April 8, 2015
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Statement by Senator Tony Avella in Response to NY1 Report Highlighting Lack of Transparency in Public Relations and Strategic Communications Firms’ Dealings with Government Officials

“As Chair of the Ethics Committee, I was shocked to learn that public relations and strategic communications firms are not subject to the same registration and disclosure requirements as lobbyists. The fact of the matter is that these firms are meeting with government officials, all the while advocating their outside clients’ interests.

April 2, 2015
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Release: Avella Applauds Queens Library Budget Meeting

(QUEENS, NY) State Senator Tony Avella today applauded the Queens Public Library for holding its first-ever public budget hearing, cementing a major step in library reform.

March 31, 2015
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Release: Avella Announces Collegiate Scholarships

(QUEENS, NY) Today, State Senator Tony Avella announced that applications are now being accepted by the New York Conference of Italian-American State Legislators for four available 2015 scholarships.

March 27, 2015
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Statement from Senator Tony Avella on DCP's Proposed Zoning Changes

“As the former Chair of Zoning and Franchises, I worked hard, along with my colleagues, community boards and civic groups throughout the city, to rezone as well as create new zoning laws to preserve the residential character of our many unique neighborhoods. 

The changes proposed by the Department of City Planning now pose a serious threat to those efforts which took years, and in some cases decades, to achieve. It is outrageous that the City now wants to undo all of those efforts and destroy the quality of life in these communities.

It is no secret that there is an ever-increasing need for senior and affordable housing in New York City, but weakening the zoning protections citywide is not the solution to this problem.

March 26, 2015
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Release: Avella Calls on MTA to Reopen 3rd Avenue Exit on Whitestone Expressway

(QUEENS, NY) Today, in a letter to the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) State Senator Tony Avella criticized the agency for continuing to delay the opening of the 3rd Avenue exit of the Whitestone Expressway.

March 25, 2015
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Release: Avella Obtains Pre-K Information Booklets

(QUEENS, NY) With Pre-K signups now underway across the City, State Senator Tony Avella announced today that  his District Office has a limited number of information booklets containing details about the enrollment process as well as a directory of schools in Queens.

The directories, provided by the New York City Department of Education, contain more than 100 pages of important information about how and where to enroll your child in Pre-K. The booklets include details – such as location, contact information, school features and number of available seats – for every Pre-K site in Queens, broken down by education district. Each pamphlet also contains one application along with instructions on how to properly complete it.

March 23, 2015
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Release: Avella Introduces Bill to Establish State Nursing Scholarship

(QUEENS, NY) State Senator Tony Avella announced today he has introduced a bill (S.4431) in the Senate, authored by Assembly Member Aileen Gunther, that would create a New York State scholarship for nurses looking to pursue an advanced degree in their field and become a teacher.

March 23, 2015
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RELEASE: AVELLA, WEPRIN AND CIVIC AND BUSINESS LEADERS RALLY AGAINST TOLLING EAST RIVER BRIDGES

(QUEENS, NY) Today, State Senator Tony Avella was joined by Assembly Member David Weprin, Keep NYC Congestion Tax Free, the Small Business Congress of New York City, which represents over 180,000 small businesses throughout New York City, the Queens Civic Congress, which represents over 100 Queens civic and cooperative associations, members of the Queens Chamber of Commerce, Friends of La Guardia, and community leaders to protest the latest congestion pricing proposal included in Move NY’s transportation plan.

March 13, 2015
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Statement From Senator Avella on Department of Investigation Homeless Shelter Report

“Today’s report released by the New York City Department of Investigation, citing serious dangers in many of our homeless shelters, is further proof that major improvements are needed when it comes to delivering homeless services to those who need it most. During my tenure as Chair of the Senate Social Services Committee, I worked to shed light on the appalling conditions that exist in many homeless shelters across the City, including calling for an investigation into many of the concerns that this report highlights.

March 12, 2015
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