Last week, the 2012 legislative session came to an end in Albany, with hundreds of bills (though fewer than in previous years) passing in the last days.
Despite being a member of the Democratic minority in the all-too-partisan State Senate, I was proud to make a number of key priorities a reality:
- We passed the first-ever intercity bus permit system, which will bring order to the wild west of the growing -- and also hugely important -- low-cost industry, and allow us to identify problems before they become tragedies.
- The sweeping domestic violence bill passed this month included my 'aggravated family offense' provision to crack down on repeat offenders, which was dedicated to fallen NYPD Officer Alain Schaberger.
- I have been pushing to end the fingerprinting of food stamp recipients for years and was thrilled that Governor Cuomo issued an executive order to bring an end to the practice.
But much remains to be done. I'll keep pushing on these key issues:
- We just celebrated Pride weekend and, as the sponsor of GENDA, I'll continue to fight until all New Yorkers have the protections and dignity they deserve.
- Governor Cuomo came out in support of reforming the "in plain view" marijuana possession statute and the inequities that come with it -- but we must get it passed.
- And today's Supreme Court decision to reaffirm Citizens United only underscores just how critical it is for states to take the lead in reforming our campaign finance system. It's time to empower real people in our political process.
As summer gets underway, I hope to see you around the district - maybe at the new Brooklyn Bridge Park pool that will open early next month, or in the shade of the cherry trees along the Bowery.