NY Senate Republican Leader Joins NYC Council Members To Call For Stop To Pro-Criminal Policies Out Of Albany

Robert G. Ortt

September 23, 2021

At Entrance to Rikers Island, State & City Lawmakers Decry Recent Pro-Criminal, Anti-Victim Policies out of Albany, & Crisis Affecting the Corrections Facility

QUEENS, NY -- Senate Republican Leader Rob Ortt today joined New York City Council Members Joe Borelli and Bob Holden at the entrance to Rikers Island to decry the latest pro-criminal, anti-victim legislation to come out of Albany under One-Party Rule.

Last Friday, Governor Hochul signed the “Less is More” bill into law, and despite the bill not taking effect until March, ordered the blanket release of nearly 200 criminals from Rikers Island. Earlier this week, the release of 17 criminals -- including a suspected hatchet murderer -- in Monroe County sparked outrage from law enforcement officials who were not even notified. 

“Under One-Party Rule, Albany continues to quadruple down on extreme pro-criminal, anti-victim, and anti-law enforcement policies that jeopardize public safety and put New Yorkers at risk -- even as we see a rise in violent crime in our communities across the state. It’s time to end the madness, give our law enforcement the resources they need to keep New Yorkers safe, and put the rights of victims and law-abiding citizens above those who break the law,” said Leader Ortt. 

“Rikers Island is in crisis only because progressive Democrats made it so. We are in this mess because unserious people pushing unserious plans were elected to office. This is a man-made catastrophe and the administration is to blame,” said Councilman Joe Borelli.

“The situation on Rikers Island is a full-blown humanitarian crisis, and Mayor de Blasio has been asleep at the wheel. He must end triple tours now, hire additional correction officers, and give those who protect our jails the tools they need to maintain order,” said Councilman Bob Holden.

The “Less is More” law is the latest in a long line of disastrous policies advanced under the guise of “reform,” and have put New Yorkers at risk -- starting with so-called “bail reform” in 2019. 

In July, Leader Ortt penned a letter to the Office of Court Administration (OCA) and New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services (DCJS) requesting a thorough and transparent analysis on the correlation between changes to New York State bail laws in the 2019-2020 State Budget and the increase in violent crime across the state since those laws went into effect January 1, 2020.

The Senate Republican Conference plans to introduce legislation, co-sponsored by Leader Ortt, to require OCA to collect and publish data to show the full ramifications of the bail reform law, including: 

  • The number of individuals that were charged with crimes that no longer qualify for bail, and a breakdown of those charges; 
  • The number of individuals released pending trial because the offense no longer qualifies for bail; and 
  • The nature of crimes committed by re-offenders awaiting trial.

While One-Party Rule in Albany continues to move forward with a dangerous pro-criminal agenda, Senate Republicans have put forward common sense proposals to give law enforcement the resources they need to do their jobs safely and effectively, protect victims rights’ , and fix New York’s broken parole system

“We are well past the time to restore common sense and public safety in New York State. We need to put an end to these radical, pro-criminal policies that have caused a rise in violent crimes and put New Yorkers at risk,” concluded Leader Ortt.