New York State Senator Kenneth P. LaValle announced today that his top legislative priorities for the 2013 New York State Senate Legislative session will include job creation and the economy, taxes, state aid to education, tuition affordability, and the environment. The legislature’s opening session is January 9.
“Until our economy is running on all cylinders, and the unemployment rate returns to pre-recession levels, jobs and our economy will continue to be my number one priority,” Senator LaValle said.
Senator LaValle said he will seek continued investment in Stony Brook University as a “job creation engine” as well as the incubators at Calverton and continued development and refinement of a comprehensive East End health care system centered around a new hospital on the campus of Stony Brook Southampton.
Senator LaValle said that development of the Enterprise Park at Calverton (EPCAL) needs to advance and that he would work closely with the Riverhead Town Supervisor and Town Board to insure that the site becomes a job creator.
A top priority on the tax front, Senator LaValle said will be enhancing the STAR Program to help homeowners as well as working with school districts to find ways to reduce costs through consolidation and/or shared services. Senator LaValle said he would also investigate ways to unburden taxpayers from unfunded state mandates.
Tuition affordability will again be a top priority for Senator LaValle, who as chairman of the New York State Senate’s Higher Education Committee helps set statewide higher education policy. LaValle’s Tuition Affordability legislation passed the Senate last year, but was not passed in the Assembly.
Long an environmental steward, Senator LaValle said he will continue to seek to preserve open space and protect our drinking water and waterways which are important to our economy. “In early February, I will again host my annual Environmental Roundtable,” Senator LaValle said. “I expect a number of issues will be raised that will become part of my environmental legislative agenda.”
“There are many challenges facing our state,” Senator LaValle said, “and I am looking forward to working with my colleagues to confront these challenges in the best interest of the constituents of the first senatorial district.”