The 2019 Legislative Session was one of the most productive sessions in New York State history. As new Senators, we were sent to Albany to enact legislation to help New Yorkers in their daily lives, and to break the logjam that had prevented good laws and forward-thinking policies from being enacted. My Senate and Assembly legislative colleagues were wonderful partners, and I am proud to be working alongside them.
During the final weeks, we passed legislation to protect tenants in Westchester and across the state, to protect New Yorkers from the spread of the measles virus, and to update our state's outdated sexual harassment laws with a comprehensive package of rights for employees who have been sexually harassed.
Other historic legislative victories include the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act (CLCPA) to combat the effects of climate change; Erin’s Law, a bill to require public schools to teach personal body safety as part of a prevention-oriented child sexual abuse program; and the Green Light NY initiative, which helps our community members come out of the shadows and increases road safety by making driver's licenses accessible regardless of immigration status.
I was very disappointed we were unable to pass a Prevailing Wage bill, which would grant local workers the opportunity to be part of the dynamic economic growth in our communities by requiring companies that receive state tax benefits to pay the prevailing wage to workers. I intend to press ahead next year to get this done. And while we did not legalize recreational marijuana for adult users, we did decriminalize possession of small amounts of marijuana and pass legislation to remove past convictions for minor marijuana-related offenses, which was long overdue. I believe the legalization of recreational marijuana must be fully vetted, and I look forward to continuing to work on this issue.
Though there is more work to be done, I am proud of what we accomplished in the 2019 Legislative Session. As always, if I can join you at a meeting or event, please let me know. And if my office can assist in any way, we look forward to doing so. My office can be reached at 914-934-5250 or at email@example.com.
Shelley B. Mayer