ALBANY, NY—Senator Sue Serino released the following statement in response to the 2021 Executive Budget Proposal that was presented today:
“The number one issue that I am hearing about right now from residents is bail reform. My constituents are worried about public safety and they want to see an immediate pause to the implementation of the new measures. I am encouraged that the Governor left the door open to changes on these dangerous measures, but I was disappointed to hear that there seemed to be more enthusiasm for changing the state flag than for protecting public safety at a time when our criminal justice system has been thrown into chaos.
The Governor warned that there would be major changes to our education funding system—likening the scope of these changes to the sweeping changes we saw with bail reform. I urge Albany’s leaders not to make the same mistake twice and to really listen to those who do the work to educate our students when considering any of these changes. This is an issue I will be watching closely.
I always say, the devil’s in the details when it comes to these budget proposals. From what I heard today, there were a few things I was glad to hear about like the needed push to reduce the cost of prescription drugs, a tax cut for small businesses, and the need to invest in infrastructure. However once again, things that matter most to our Hudson Valley communities weren’t mentioned—funding to combat Lyme and tick-borne diseases, funding for veterans’ mental health services, and funding to reduce the overall cost of living for hard-working New Yorkers. Throughout this year’s budget process, I will continue to fight for issues like these that matter most to our neighbors.”