Regular Session - February 03, 2020

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 1                NEW YORK STATE SENATE

 2                          

 3                          

 4               THE STENOGRAPHIC RECORD

 5                          

 6                          

 7                          

 8                          

 9                  ALBANY, NEW YORK

10                  February 3, 2020

11                      3:44 p.m.

12                          

13                          

14                   REGULAR SESSION

15  

16  

17  

18  SENATOR BRIAN A. BENJAMIN, Acting President

19  ALEJANDRA N. PAULINO, ESQ., Secretary

20  

21  

22  

23  

24  

25  


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 1                P R O C E E D I N G S

 2                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   The 

 3   Senate will come to order.  

 4                I ask everyone present to please 

 5   rise and recite the Pledge of Allegiance.

 6                (Whereupon, the assemblage recited 

 7   the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag.)

 8                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   In the 

 9   absence of clergy, let us bow our heads in a 

10   moment of silent reflection or prayer.

11                (Whereupon, the assemblage respected 

12   a moment of silence.)

13                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   The 

14   reading of the Journal.

15                THE SECRETARY:   In Senate, Sunday, 

16   February 2, 2020, the Senate met pursuant to 

17   adjournment.  The Journal of Saturday, 

18   February 1, 2020, was read and approved.  On 

19   motion, the Senate adjourned.

20                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Without 

21   objection, the Journal stands approved as read.

22                Presentation of petitions.

23                Messages from the Assembly.

24                The Secretary will read.

25                THE SECRETARY:   Senator Comrie 


                                                               440

 1   moves to discharge, from the Committee on Rules, 

 2   Assembly Bill Number 8946 and substitute it for 

 3   the identical Senate Bill Number 6948, Third 

 4   Reading Calendar 27.

 5                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   The 

 6   substitution is so ordered.

 7                THE SECRETARY:   Senator Parker 

 8   moves to discharge, from the Committee on Rules, 

 9   Assembly Bill Number 8960 and substitute it for 

10   the identical Senate Bill 6958, Third Reading 

11   Calendar 37.

12                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:    

13   Substitution so ordered.

14                Messages from the Governor.

15                Reports of standing committees.  

16                Reports of select committees.

17                Communications and reports from 

18   state officers.

19                Motions and resolutions.

20                Senator Gianaris.

21                SENATOR GIANARIS:   On behalf of 

22   Senator Kaplan, Mr. President, on page 21 I offer 

23   the following amendments to Calendar Number 250, 

24   Senate Print 5239, and ask that said bill retain 

25   its place on Third Reading Calendar.


                                                               441

 1                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   The 

 2   amendments are received, and the bill shall 

 3   retain its place on the Third Reading Calendar.  

 4                SENATOR GIANARIS:   And on behalf of 

 5   Senator Carlucci, I move that the following bill 

 6   be discharged from its respective committee and 

 7   be recommitted with instructions to strike the 

 8   enacting clause:  Senate Bill 6628.

 9                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   It is 

10   so ordered.

11                SENATOR GIANARIS:   Please call on 

12   Senator Griffo.

13                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Senator 

14   Griffo.

15                SENATOR GRIFFO:   Thank you, 

16   Mr. President.  

17                I also move that the following bills 

18   be discharged from their respective committees 

19   and be recommitted with instructions to strike 

20   the enacting clause:  Senate Bill 6807, by 

21   Senator Helming, and Senate Bill 1578, by 

22   Senator Gallivan.

23                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   It is 

24   so ordered.

25                Senator Gianaris.


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 1                SENATOR GIANARIS:   Can we now take 

 2   up the reading of the calendar.

 3                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   The 

 4   Secretary will read.

 5                THE SECRETARY:   Calendar Number 27, 

 6   Assembly Bill Number 8946, substituted earlier by 

 7   Assemblymember Darling, an act to amend a chapter 

 8   of the Laws of 2019.

 9                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Read 

10   the last section.

11                THE SECRETARY:   Section 2.  This 

12   act shall take effect immediately.

13                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Call 

14   the roll.

15                (The Secretary called the roll.)

16                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:    

17   Senator Skoufis to explain his vote.

18                SENATOR SKOUFIS:   Thank you very 

19   much, Mr. President.  

20                This is the first of two bills today 

21   that I'll be voting against.  This underlying 

22   bill is an excellent bill.  The chapter 

23   amendment, however, is not so excellent in the 

24   sense that the only reason why we are moving 

25   forward with this chapter amendment is to 


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 1   acquiesce to a power grab by this Governor.  

 2                In fact, I find it strange and 

 3   reprehensible that he would hold all legislation 

 4   hostage unless we acquiesce to providing a 

 5   majority of appointees to him on given 

 6   commissions and task forces, committees, 

 7   et cetera.  And that's what this chapter 

 8   amendment does.  

 9                I believe we should vote down this 

10   chapter amendment, which preserves the 

11   legislative prerogative of the underlying bill in 

12   having a fair and proportional number of 

13   appointees.  So I'll be voting down on this, with 

14   respect to the sponsor, and support the 

15   underlying bill.

16                Thank you.

17                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:    

18   Senator Skoufis to be recorded in the negative.

19                Announce the results.

20                THE SECRETARY:   In relation to 

21   Calendar Number 27, those Senators voting in the 

22   negative are Senators Akshar, Borrello, Boyle, 

23   Gallivan, Griffo, Helming, Jacobs, Jordan, Liu, 

24   O'Mara, Ortt, Ramos, Ranzenhofer, Rivera, Robach, 

25   Skoufis and Tedisco.


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 1                Ayes, 42.  Nays, 17.

 2                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   The 

 3   bill is passed.

 4                THE SECRETARY:   Calendar Number 37, 

 5   Assembly Print Number 8960, substituted earlier 

 6   by Assemblymember Peoples-Stokes, an act to amend 

 7   the Environmental Conservation Law.

 8                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Read 

 9   the last section.

10                THE SECRETARY:   Section 2.  This 

11   act shall take effect on the same date and in the 

12   same manner as a chapter of the Laws of 2019.

13                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Call 

14   the roll.

15                (The Secretary called the roll.)

16                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:    

17   Announce the results.

18                THE SECRETARY:   In relation to 

19   Calendar Number 37, those Senators voting in the 

20   negative are Senators Akshar, Jacobs, Lanza, Ortt 

21   Ramos, Rivera, Skoufis.  Also Senator 

22   Ranzenhofer, Senator Helming and Senator Griffo.  

23   Senator O'Mara.  Senator Borrello.  

24                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:    

25   Announce the results.


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 1                THE SECRETARY:   In relation to 

 2   Calendar Number 37, those Senators voting in the 

 3   negative are Senators Akshar, Borrello, Griffo, 

 4   Helming, Jacobs, Jordan, Lanza, Liu, O'Mara, 

 5   Ortt, Ramos, Ranzenhofer, Rivera and Skoufis.

 6                Ayes, 45.  Nays, 14.

 7                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   The 

 8   bill is passed.

 9                THE SECRETARY:   Calendar Number 40, 

10   Senate Print 6961, by Senator Myrie, an act to 

11   amend a chapter of the Laws of 2019.

12                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Read 

13   the last section.

14                THE SECRETARY:   Section 3.  This 

15   act shall take effect immediately.

16                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Call 

17   the roll.

18                (The Secretary called the roll.)

19                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:    

20   Announce the results.

21                THE SECRETARY:   Ayes, 59.

22                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   The 

23   bill is passed.

24                THE SECRETARY:   Calendar Number 84, 

25   Senate Print 7160, by Senator Jackson, an act to 


                                                               446

 1   amend the Tax Law.

 2                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Read 

 3   the last section.

 4                THE SECRETARY:   Section 3.  This 

 5   act shall take effect immediately.

 6                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Call 

 7   the roll.

 8                (The Secretary called the roll.)

 9                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Senator 

10   Jackson to explain his vote.

11                SENATOR JACKSON:   Thank you, 

12   Mr. President.  

13                My colleagues, I rise to explain my 

14   sponsorship of this bill.  This body's support of 

15   the New York State film tax credit has helped the 

16   film and TV production industry in New York State 

17   continue to grow.  Specifically, the increase in 

18   the number of television productions in New York 

19   gives us the opportunity to bring about positive 

20   change to the industry by implementing policies 

21   aimed at improving the lack of representation 

22   plaguing our TV industry.

23                Writers and directors have critical 

24   control over the creative direction that a 

25   television series will take.  These professionals 


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 1   craft the stories that people come to enjoy on 

 2   the screen, and their life experiences inform 

 3   their creative decisions.  A lack of diversity in 

 4   the background of the staff who are writing and 

 5   directing shows has translated to a lack of 

 6   diversity in the stories told on screen.  In the 

 7   Writers Guild of America East, only 27 percent of 

 8   creative writers from the past five years were 

 9   women, and only 14 percent were people of color.

10                Numbers for writers across the 

11   country are similarly out of touch with our 

12   country's current makeup, and the data of lack of 

13   diversity among directors is even more dismal.  

14                This bill will help fix that problem 

15   by giving an incentive to companies to give women 

16   and minority writers and directors of episodic TV 

17   shows a chance to showcase their skills and build 

18   up their resumes.  

19                First, the bill now requires a 

20   disparity study to statistically prove these 

21   issues and concerns of representation.  And once 

22   the study has been completed, assuming it shows 

23   what we see to be true, the bill would designate 

24   $5 million for hiring women and minority writers, 

25   offering $50,000 in tax credits per hire per 


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 1   episode, for up to $150,000 total.  

 2                By encouraging greater diversity 

 3   among writers and directors of TV shows, we are 

 4   doing very important work upstream to make sure 

 5   that the onscreen media representations that 

 6   children consume downstream are more 

 7   representative of them.  To me, that's well worth 

 8   the tax credit this bill will grant, and I look 

 9   forward to doing even more in the future.  

10                And today, my colleagues, I hope I 

11   can count on you in supporting this particular 

12   bill and voting aye.  Thank you.

13                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Senator 

14   Jackson to be recorded in the affirmative.

15                Senator Skoufis to explain his vote.

16                SENATOR SKOUFIS:   Thank you very 

17   much, Mr. President.

18                I'll be voting in the negative on 

19   this bill.  And I certainly understand what the 

20   sponsor and many of my colleagues are looking to 

21   achieve here, but I do believe that this 

22   presents -- and during the budget negotiations, 

23   the next couple of months present an opportunity 

24   to take a wholesale look at this and many other 

25   economic development programs and incentives that 


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 1   exist.

 2                Let's be clear.  I view this and 

 3   have viewed this incentive as a Hollywood 

 4   giveaway by our esteemed Governor.  And the fact 

 5   is just a couple of months ago there was a study 

 6   done by the University of Southern California 

 7   that reads, in part:  "States like New York 

 8   investing the most in incentives for film tax 

 9   credits are not getting the return on investment 

10   taxpayers deserve, pure and simple."

11                Here in New York, from 2004 when 

12   this all began, projected through 2024 -- which 

13   is when the tax credit currently runs through -- 

14   $7.3 billion will have been disbursed through 

15   this film tax credit, $7.3 billion.  

16                We talk a lot in this chamber and in 

17   our conference about fulfilling CFE, fulfilling 

18   the promise to our public schools.  That's 

19   $3 billion and change.  This tax credit, 

20   7 billion plus dollars.  By 2009, 44 states had 

21   programs, but since then 13 states have 

22   completely eliminated their film tax credit 

23   programs.  Studio Binder, a Hollywood consulting 

24   firm, on their own website:  "Your film budget 

25   isn't complete until you factor in taxes.  What 


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 1   if you were told you could magically get some of 

 2   moolah back?  That's right, I'm talking film  tax 

 3   credits, baby.  Whether or not film tax credits 

 4   actually work, however, is up for debate.  So 

 5   filmmakers, get them while they're hot."

 6                That's right on a Hollywood 

 7   consulting website pointing people to states like 

 8   New York.

 9                Of course film-related jobs have 

10   increased since we put this tax credit in place.  

11   If we gave billions --

12                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Senator 

13   Skoufis, how do you vote?

14                SENATOR SKOUFIS:   -- and billions 

15   of dollars to any industry, we'd create jobs.  

16   The question is, are we getting back in returns 

17   what those jobs are?  

18                I vote no, I hope we'll reconsider 

19   this tax credit.

20                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:    

21   Senator Skoufis to be recorded in the negative.

22                Senator Akshar to explain his vote.

23                SENATOR AKSHAR:   Mr. President, 

24   thank you.  I didn't think I would ever say this, 

25   but I agree with Senator Skoufis.  


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 1                (Laughter.)

 2                SENATOR AKSHAR:   This film tax 

 3   credit, in my humble opinion, the biggest waste 

 4   of money in the state.  

 5                Just by way of example, no money for 

 6   the Dwyer program this year in the Executive's 

 7   budget -- $3.7 million, a paltry $3.7 million.  

 8   One million dollars the Governor suggests we 

 9   spend for suicide prevention for law enforcement 

10   and for our veterans.  There is zero extra 

11   dollars, zero extra dollars to deal with the 

12   heroin and the opioid crisis.  But yet we would 

13   spend $420 million to give to multimillionaires 

14   and multibillionaires.  

15                Here's a suggestion.  Why don't we 

16   give every hardworking taxpayer in New York a 

17   $50,000 tax credit?  That's what I think we 

18   should be doing with the $420 million, is taking 

19   care of people who break their back day in and 

20   day out to pay their property taxes, to make 

21   payroll taxes, to pay their insurance.  That's 

22   what we should in fact be doing, putting the 

23   taxpayers first.

24                There is a reason why 1.4 million 

25   people have left this state over the last decade.  


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 1   It is because New York is not affordable.  And it 

 2   is because of programs just like this.  Programs 

 3   just like this make New York not affordable.  

 4                I stand with the taxpayer, and I 

 5   vote no.

 6                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:    

 7   Senator Akshar to be recorded in the negative.

 8                Senator Lanza to explain his vote.

 9                SENATOR LANZA:   Thank you, 

10   Mr. President.

11                Now, I never thought that I would 

12   say this, which is that I disagree with 

13   Senator Akshar.  

14                (Laughter.)

15                SENATOR LANZA:   Of course Southern 

16   California doesn't like this, because we're 

17   stealing business from them.  That's the only 

18   thing they care about.  Since when does Southern 

19   California take a look at anything we're doing 

20   here in New York?  They're hemorrhaging jobs, and 

21   those jobs are coming right here to this state.

22                This works.  We know.  You can talk 

23   about all the studies you want to.  The thing 

24   that we know and is confirmed by the Budget 

25   Office is that we receive more revenue in 


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 1   economic activity in the State of New York than 

 2   this credit costs us.  I say that's a good deal.  

 3   Anytime we can do something in this state that 

 4   creates jobs, we ought to be supporting it 

 5   wholeheartedly.

 6                And one last point.  It's a tax cut.  

 7   And I'll go on the record, I'll support any tax 

 8   cut from anyone here in New York State.  

 9                I vote in the affirmative.  Thank 

10   you, Mr. President.

11                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Senator 

12   Lanza to be recorded in the affirmative.

13                Senator Tedisco to explain his vote.

14                SENATOR TEDISCO:   Yeah, earlier 

15   this year we spent 80 minutes listening to the 

16   Governor give his State of the State, and then he 

17   gave us the budget.  And he neglected to mention 

18   two issues.  Of course one has been obvious, 

19   because we've seen that purge.  That's the cash 

20   bail issue.  

21                But the other thing he neglected to 

22   mention and talk about is he got up there and 

23   said "We have the greatest progressive agenda in 

24   the whole United States of America."  Of all 50 

25   states, the greatest progressive agenda.  


                                                               454

 1                If you look into one of those 

 2   chimneys over there, not only are there 

 3   Republican elephants here, but there's an 

 4   elephant in the chimney.  It's the 77,000 

 5   individuals who left the State of New York last 

 6   year.  If that's the greatest progressive agenda, 

 7   I'd hate to see a medium or poor progressive 

 8   agenda.  Where 77,000 people, number one in the 

 9   United States of America, have walked out of the 

10   State of New York.  

11                And the biggest question, and the 

12   reason I mention that, is 420 million for 

13   millionaire moguls.  My constituents in the 49th 

14   Senatorial District don't understand, because 

15   they don't even have broadband so they could get 

16   Amazon out there to get those 25,000 jobs over 

17   there.

18                The big question is when enough of 

19   those individuals leave the State of New York.  

20   Number one, 10 years, 1.4 million, statistics 

21   show they're $150,000 or more in income.  The 

22   wealthy are leaving.  They can afford to leave.  

23   Of those $50,000 or less, only 8.4 percent of 

24   those.  Largest outmigration, who are here left?  

25   Who is going to pay for a $170 billion budget 


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 1   when you're spending $420 million to give moguls 

 2   and millionaires from Hollywood these tax credits 

 3   and tax breaks over there?  How are you going to 

 4   pay for our educational system, our senior 

 5   citizen programs -- our most vulnerable 

 6   population -- our infrastructure, if most of 

 7   those who are leaving can afford to pick up and 

 8   leave?  

 9                Ladies and gentlemen, we're supposed 

10   to be the Empire State.  We will shortly be the 

11   empty state.  "I love New York" is our slogan.  

12   It's beginning to be "I leave New York" in 

13   New York.

14                Think about it --

15                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Senator 

16   Tedisco.

17                SENATOR TEDISCO:   -- use some 

18   common sense.  Not the common sense you used --

19                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Senator 

20   Tedisco, how do you vote?

21                SENATOR TEDISCO:   -- to pass cash 

22   bail over a year ago.  Bad, bad news.

23                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   How do 

24   you vote, Senator Tedisco?  

25                SENATOR TEDISCO:   I vote no.


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 1                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Senator 

 2   Tedisco to be recorded in the negative.

 3                Senator Rivera to explain his vote.

 4                SENATOR RIVERA:   Thank you, 

 5   Mr. President.  And now you're going to hear 

 6   something else that you don't hear often.  I 

 7   agree with Senator Lanza.  

 8                (Laughter.)

 9                SENATOR RIVERA:   We're having all 

10   sorts of firsts here this afternoon, ladies and 

11   gentlemen.  

12                So Mr. President, I agree with 

13   Senator Lanza because -- and this is coming from 

14   somebody who obviously -- as many have heard me 

15   say before and will continue to hear me say, we 

16   should tax the wealthy more.  But in this case, 

17   what is important about this particular tax break 

18   is the extension that it has.  It's not just for 

19   the moguls.  But I would actually ask you to go 

20   to these studios, where you have hundreds of 

21   people, not just the actors, but every single 

22   person behind the camera, those folks operating 

23   the camera, the folks that are building the sets, 

24   the folks that are -- and some of these studios 

25   actually have a great relationship with local 


                                                               457

 1   businesses, so they buy coffee or buy bagels 

 2   every single day.  They have all of these 

 3   extended jobs that come from the folks that go to 

 4   those productions.

 5                And I will also tell you, 

 6   Mr. President, that the thing that is important 

 7   about keeping tax credits like this is that 

 8   indeed companies, certain companies -- we have 

 9   certain companies that own the studios that are 

10   in New York and employ New Yorkers, but the folks 

11   that are actually making the production, the 

12   production houses, they sometimes have a lot of 

13   flexibility.  So if we're not able to provide 

14   them with a situation in which they would stay 

15   here, they would seek other places.

16                Now, we've been able to create this 

17   great environment where people are producing 

18   shows here, producing TV shows and movies in the 

19   city and the state of New York.  And even, again, 

20   as somebody who has always called for more taxes, 

21   in this case I believe that we should actually 

22   keep this because of all the extra jobs that it 

23   produces.

24                So it might not ever happen again, 

25   but Senator Lanza, you are right.  I will be 


                                                               458

 1   voting in the affirmative.

 2                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Senator 

 3   Rivera to be recorded in the affirmative.

 4                Senator Bailey to explain his vote.

 5                SENATOR BAILEY:   Thank you, 

 6   Mr. President.  

 7                (Inaudible) but we agree relatively 

 8   often, so this is another situation where we do 

 9   agree.  I think this is great for us.  I think 

10   that if you see what's happening with the film 

11   tax credit, and if -- you're seeing that more 

12   locations are being utilized, especially in my 

13   home borough of the Bronx.  Anytime you go to the 

14   Grand Concourse or to the Courthouse, there are 

15   some signs up.  If you're going around Walton 

16   Avenue, if you're going in my district, Co-op 

17   City and so many places in the Bronx, you're 

18   seeing more -- you're seeing people, you're 

19   seeing directors utilize the city more.  And for 

20   whatever that's worth, if somebody else somewhere 

21   else gets to see how beautiful the Bronx is, this 

22   might be worth it.  

23                But aside from that, it's creating 

24   jobs.  It is giving opportunity.  And one of the 

25   other things that nobody has said, though I think 


                                                               459

 1   Senator Jackson mentioned it, is diversity.  You 

 2   have to be able to see something in order to be 

 3   something.  

 4                And I think that the component about 

 5   creating this study to make sure that whoever is 

 6   behind the camera is just as important as who's 

 7   front of the camera, I think it will make our 

 8   state greater in the long run.  Everything can't 

 9   be about just tomorrow or next year.  

10   Mr. President, I speak ad nauseam sometimes about 

11   my daughters, who are five and three.  I want to 

12   do today what's going to make them better in 

13   their state when they're parents -- hopefully not 

14   for a long time, but when they're parents.  

15                I vote aye, Mr. President.  

16                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:    

17   Senator Bailey to be recorded in the affirmative.

18                Senator Kennedy to explain his vote.

19                SENATOR KENNEDY:   Thank you, 

20   Mr. President.

21                I never thought I'd say this, but 

22   it's great to see our colleague and friend 

23   Senator Andy Lanza finally speaking some common 

24   sense and talking like a Democrat.  

25                (Laughter.)


                                                               460

 1                SENATOR KENNEDY:   It's wonderful, 

 2   wonderful to see.

 3                That being said, let me just take a 

 4   moment to recognize the importance of this film 

 5   tax credit in our state.  It is helping to drive 

 6   the economy certainly across the state, certainly 

 7   in Buffalo and Western New York where I 

 8   represent.  And we're seeing thousands of jobs 

 9   created across this state, tens of thousands of 

10   jobs supported, billions of dollars invested in 

11   New York all across the state, from the tip of 

12   Long Island all the way out to Western New York 

13   and everywhere in between.  From a film industry 

14   that could and has otherwise ignored the State of 

15   New York and gone elsewhere, whether it was out 

16   on the West Coast, whether it was into Canada or 

17   other states surrounding New York, because this 

18   incentive wasn't there.  

19                Now we finally have an incentive 

20   that's working, it's creating jobs, and our 

21   colleagues on the other side of the aisle want to 

22   throw bombs at it.  I think it's misguided and 

23   it's unfortunate.  

24                And to somehow tie to this 

25   initiative, this very smart and thoughtful 


                                                               461

 1   initiative about diversifying the industry from 

 2   Senator Jackson, to a loss of population that I 

 3   believe has been directly impacted by our former 

 4   colleagues that held the majority for the better 

 5   part of 70 or 80 years, and the policies that 

 6   were driven by the Republican majority here and 

 7   now are being driven out of Washington, that are 

 8   having a true negative impact on the state, on 

 9   our tax base and on our ability to bring people 

10   here into the state.

11                That's what I believe we're going to 

12   find from those that want to study why people are 

13   leaving the state.  We have jobs here for people 

14   to fill, but it's the misguided policy coming out 

15   of Washington --

16                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Senator 

17   Kennedy, how do you vote?  

18                SENATOR KENNEDY:   -- and supported 

19   by our colleagues across the aisle that's 

20   continuing the outflow.  

21                I support this bill and vote aye.

22                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Senator 

23   Kennedy to be recorded in the affirmative.

24                Senator Savino to explain --

25                SENATOR LANZA:   Mr. President, 


                                                               462

 1   point of personal privilege.

 2                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Senator 

 3   Gianaris.

 4                SENATOR GIANARIS:   Mr. President, I 

 5   apologize, I had to step out momentarily.  So 

 6   let's recognize Senator Lanza for a point of 

 7   personal privilege.

 8                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Senator 

 9   Lanza.

10                SENATOR LANZA:   Mr. President, for 

11   the record, I'm still waiting for Senator Kennedy 

12   to make any sense at all.  

13                I still vote aye.  

14                (Laughter.)

15                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   

16   Senator -- Senator Savino -- Senator Kennedy.

17                SENATOR KENNEDY:   Yes, point of 

18   personal privilege.  

19                Number one, uncalled for.  Number 

20   two, my friend should open up his ears.

21                Thank you, Mr. President.  

22                (Reaction from Senators.)  

23                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Senator 

24   Gianaris.

25                SENATOR GIANARIS:   Mr. President, 


                                                               463

 1   let's all take a breath.  There's a couple more 

 2   speakers on this bill, and we have the rest of 

 3   the agenda to go, so I suggest we move on at this 

 4   point.  Thank you.  

 5                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Senator 

 6   Savino to explain her vote.

 7                SENATOR SAVINO:   Thank you, 

 8   Mr. President.  Of course I would have to follow 

 9   that exchange.

10                So let me just say I agree with 

11   Senator Lanza, I agree with Senator Rivera, I 

12   agree with Senator Jackson, and I agree with 

13   anybody who supports this.  I've been in the 

14   Senate now 15 years, and I have seen what the 

15   film tax credit has done, how it has transformed 

16   the industry in New York.  

17                And it's not just about movie moguls 

18   or even famous actors and actresses.  It's behind 

19   the scenes.  It's every grip, it's every lighting 

20   guy, it's every set designer, it's the 

21   stagehands, it's the restaurants that serve.  It 

22   is everybody that helps support this industry.  

23                I am old enough now that I remember 

24   the Kaufman Studios when it was an abandoned 

25   building.  I lived up the street from it.  If you 


                                                               464

 1   look at it today, it is not just one of the 

 2   premier studios in the United States, it's what, 

 3   three streets closed around?  They've turned it 

 4   into an open sound stage.  I remember when 

 5   Silvercup Studios was still baking bread.  Now it 

 6   is a premier studio.  I remember when, nine years 

 7   ago, this Legislature allowed the Governor to 

 8   close prisons.  One of those prisons now is 

 9   Broadway Stages on the south shore of Staten 

10   Island, a major sound stage.  Steiner Studios.  

11   The list goes on and on.

12                The effect of the film tax credit is 

13   beneficial, it puts real people to work, keeps 

14   really good jobs here in New York State, the kind 

15   of jobs that we want -- good union jobs that 

16   allow people to live in dignity, put food on 

17   their table, plan for their retirement, and be 

18   part of the community.  

19                So I wholeheartedly support this 

20   bill, Senator Jackson, and I agree with all of my 

21   colleagues who do.  And for those of you who 

22   don't agree with me, I'm going to keep talking to 

23   you till you do.  

24                Thank you, Mr. President.  I vote 

25   aye.


                                                               465

 1                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Senator 

 2   Savino to be recorded in the affirmative.

 3                Senator Sanders to explain his vote.

 4                SENATOR SANDERS:   Thank you, 

 5   Mr. President.  

 6                Since everyone joined with 

 7   Mr. Lanza, Senator Lanza, I will associate myself 

 8   with Senator Tedisco.  I think that there are 

 9   concerns, but you've got the wrong target, sir.  

10   There are areas that we do need to look at that 

11   there's just downright corporate welfare taking 

12   place, and we need to get rid of that fat.  

13                This is not one of them, sir.  If it 

14   was, I would say that.  This is actually one of 

15   the smartest things that we have done, this type 

16   of tax credit.  It has delivered more in terms of 

17   dollars returning -- for every one dollar we put 

18   out, we get several back.  So this is an example 

19   of what should be done.  

20                But there are numerous others that I 

21   would love to speak to you about, and we should 

22   talk of pruning waste and things of that nature.  

23   I look forward to those conversions.  

24                I vote -- I'm still within my time, 

25   let the record show, and I vote aye.


                                                               466

 1                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:    

 2   Senator Sanders to be recorded in the 

 3   affirmative.

 4                Senator Stavisky to explain her 

 5   vote.

 6                SENATOR STAVISKY:   Thank you, 

 7   Mr. President.  

 8                And I thank Senator Savino for the 

 9   commercial for the Silvercup and Kaufman in 

10   Astoria and all of the studios in Queens County.  

11   And you're not going to find a more diverse place 

12   in the entire country than Queens County.  

13                I have toured the studios, I find 

14   them exciting.  I don't watch their programs that 

15   they have on TV, but nevertheless it's exciting 

16   to see the jobs, the people waiting on line to be 

17   extras for what they are filming for that day.

18                It is exciting to provide the tax 

19   revenue, the tax revenue.  These are good 

20   union-paying jobs, as Senator Savino said.  These 

21   are postproduction and preproduction tax credits.  

22                And it seems to me that this is a 

23   very easy vote if you support diversity in our 

24   system.  I proudly vote aye.

25                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Senator 


                                                               467

 1   Stavisky to be recorded in the affirmative.

 2                Announce the results.

 3                THE SECRETARY:   In relation to 

 4   Calendar Number 84 those Senators voting in the 

 5   negative are Senators Akshar, Borrello, Flanagan, 

 6   Funke, Gallivan, Griffo, Helming, Jacobs, Jordan, 

 7   LaValle, O'Mara, Ortt, Ritchie, Serino, Seward, 

 8   Skoufis and Tedisco.  Also Senator Ranzenhofer.  

 9   Also Senator Robach.

10                Ayes, 40.  Nays, 19.

11                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   The 

12   bill is passed.

13                THE SECRETARY:   Calendar Number 93, 

14   Senate Print 7169, by Senator Benjamin, an act to 

15   amend the General Business Law.

16                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Read 

17   the last section.

18                THE SECRETARY:   Section 2.  This 

19   act shall take effect on the same date and in the 

20   same manner as a chapter of the Laws of 2019.

21                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Call 

22   the roll.

23                (The Secretary called the roll.)

24                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:    

25   Announce the results.


                                                               468

 1                THE SECRETARY:   In relation to 

 2   Calendar Number 93, those Senators voting in the 

 3   negative are Senators Akshar, Flanagan, Funke, 

 4   Gallivan, Jacobs, Jordan, Lanza, LaValle, O'Mara 

 5   and Ortt.  Also Senator Ranzenhofer.  

 6                Ayes, 48.  Nays, 11.

 7                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   The 

 8   bill is passed.

 9                THE SECRETARY:   Calendar Number 

10   106, Senate Print 7182, by Senator Sepúlveda, an 

11   act to amend the Correction Law.

12                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Read 

13   the last section.

14                THE SECRETARY:   Section 2.  This 

15   act shall take effect on the same date and in the 

16   same manner as a chapter of the Laws of 2019.

17                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Call 

18   the roll.

19                (The Secretary called the roll.)

20                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Senator 

21   Sepúlveda to explain his vote.

22                SENATOR SEPÚLVEDA:   Thank you for 

23   allowing me to explain my vote.

24                As chair of the Committee on 

25   Corrections, I saw it necessary to address the 


                                                               469

 1   mortality reports that come out of the 

 2   Correctional Medical Review Board, which is 

 3   supposed to provide information about an inmate's 

 4   death in the report.  It's supposed to be  

 5   provided to me as chair, to the Assembly 

 6   committee, and the Governor.

 7                The problem we're having is that the 

 8   redactions are so numerous -- and purportedly for 

 9   privacy concerns, but these redactions have 

10   nothing to do with privacy -- that you really 

11   can't make an intelligent -- or have a critical 

12   review of the cause of death of the incarcerated 

13   individual.

14                So this is a chapter amendment to 

15   clean up these technical issues with the original 

16   bill.  And I'd like to thank my colleagues on  

17   the Assembly side, the Governor's staff, for 

18   working diligently.  And I hope that Senator 

19   Lanza agrees with my bill.

20                Thank you.

21                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Senator 

22   Sepúlveda to be recorded in the affirmative.

23                Announce the results.

24                THE SECRETARY:   In relation to 

25   Calendar Number 106, those Senators voting in the 


                                                               470

 1   negative are Senators Borrello, Flanagan, 

 2   Gallivan, Griffo, Helming, Jacobs, Jordan, 

 3   LaValle, O'Mara, Ortt, Ranzenhofer, Serino, 

 4   Seward and Tedisco.  Also Senator Little.  Also 

 5   Senator Akshar.

 6                Ayes, 43.  Nays, 16.

 7                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   The 

 8   bill is passed.

 9                There is a substitution at the desk.  

10   The Secretary will read.

11                THE SECRETARY:   Senator Sanders 

12   moves to discharge, from the Committee on Rules, 

13   Assembly Bill Number 8965 and substitute it for 

14   the identical Senate Bill 7189, Third Reading 

15   Calendar 113.

16                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   The 

17   substitution is so ordered.

18                The Secretary will read.

19                THE SECRETARY:   Calendar Number 

20   113, Assembly Print Number 8965, by 

21   Assemblymember Englebright, an act to amend the 

22   Environmental Conservation Law.

23                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Read 

24   the last section.

25                THE SECRETARY:   Section 2.  This 


                                                               471

 1   act shall take effect on the same date and in the 

 2   same manner as a chapter of the Laws of 2019.

 3                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Call 

 4   the roll.

 5                (The Secretary called the roll.)

 6                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:    

 7   Announce the results.

 8                THE SECRETARY:   Ayes, 59.

 9                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   The 

10   bill is passed.

11                THE SECRETARY:   Calendar Number 

12   128, Senate Print 250A, by Senator Kennedy, an 

13   act to establish a private student loan finance 

14   task force.

15                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Read 

16   the last section.

17                THE SECRETARY:   Section 5.  This 

18   act shall take effect immediately.

19                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Call 

20   the roll.

21                (The Secretary called the roll.)

22                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:    

23   Announce the results.

24                THE SECRETARY:   Ayes, 59.

25                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   The 


                                                               472

 1   bill is passed.

 2                THE SECRETARY:   Calendar Number 

 3   129, Senate Print 3661, by Senator Gounardes, an 

 4   act to amend the Education Law.

 5                SENATOR GIANARIS:   Lay it aside for 

 6   the day.

 7                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Lay it 

 8   aside for the day.

 9                THE SECRETARY:   Calendar Number 

10   229, Senate Print 4489, by Senator Gounardes, an 

11   act to amend the Education Law.

12                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Read 

13   the last section.

14                THE SECRETARY:   Section 3.  This 

15   act shall take effect one year after it shall 

16   have become a law.

17                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Call 

18   the roll.

19                (The Secretary called the roll.)

20                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:    

21   Announce the results.

22                THE SECRETARY:   In relation to 

23   Calendar Number 229, those Senators voting in the 

24   negative are Senators Akshar and Funke.  Also 

25   Senator Ortt.  Also Senator Jacobs.  Also 


                                                               473

 1   Senator O'Mara.

 2                Ayes, 54.  Nays, 5.

 3                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   The 

 4   bill is passed.

 5                THE SECRETARY:   Calendar Number 

 6   246, Senate Print 3548A, by Senator Stavisky, an 

 7   act to amend the State Finance Law.

 8                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Read 

 9   the last section.

10                THE SECRETARY:   Section 2.  This 

11   act shall take effect immediately.

12                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   Call 

13   the roll.

14                (The Secretary called the roll.)

15                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:    

16   Announce the results.

17                THE SECRETARY:   Ayes, 59.

18                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   The 

19   bill is passed.

20                Senator Gianaris, that completes the 

21   reading of today's calendar.

22                SENATOR GIANARIS:   Mr. President, 

23   there will be an immediate meeting of the 

24   Rules Committee in Room 332.

25                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   There 


                                                               474

 1   will be an immediate meeting of the 

 2   Rules Committee in Room 332.

 3                SENATOR GIANARIS:   The Senate 

 4   stands at ease.

 5                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   The 

 6   Senate will stand at ease.

 7                (Whereupon, the Senate stood at ease 

 8   at 4:19 p.m.)

 9                (Whereupon, the Senate reconvened at 

10   4:30 p.m.)

11                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   The 

12   Senate will return to order.

13                Senator Gianaris.

14                SENATOR GIANARIS:   Mr. President, 

15   can we please return to reports of standing 

16   committees.

17                There's a report of the Rules 

18   Committee at the desk.  Please take that up.

19                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   There's 

20   a report of the Rules Committee at the desk.

21                The Secretary will read.  

22                THE SECRETARY:   Senator 

23   Stewart-Cousins, from the Committee on Rules, 

24   reports the following bills:  

25                Senate Print 4741B, by Senator 


                                                               475

 1   Harckham, an act to amend the Mental Hygiene Law; 

 2                Senate Print 5150B, by Senator 

 3   Harckham, an act to amend the Public Health Law; 

 4                Senate Print 5312A, by Senator 

 5   Harckham, an act in relation to directing the 

 6   State Board of Real Property Tax Services to 

 7   conduct a study on real property tax saturation;

 8                Senate Print 5480, by 

 9   Senator Rivera, an act to amend the Public Health 

10   Law; and

11                Senate Print 7623, by 

12   Senator Hoylman, an act to amend the Vehicle and 

13   Traffic Law.

14                All bills reported direct to third 

15   reading.

16                SENATOR GIANARIS:   Move to accept 

17   the report of Rules Committee.

18                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   All 

19   those in favor of accepting the report of the 

20   Rules Committee signify by saying aye.

21                (Response of "Aye.")

22                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:    

23   Opposed, nay.

24                (No response.)

25                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   The 


                                                               476

 1   report of the Rules Committee is accepted.

 2                Senator Gianaris.

 3                SENATOR GIANARIS:   Is there any 

 4   further business at the desk?

 5                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   There 

 6   is no further business at the desk.

 7                SENATOR GIANARIS:   Move to adjourn 

 8   until tomorrow, Tuesday, February 4th, at 

 9   3:00 p.m.

10                ACTING PRESIDENT BENJAMIN:   On 

11   motion, the Senate stands adjourned until 

12   Tuesday, February 4th, at 3:00 p.m.

13                (Whereupon, at 4:31 p.m., the Senate 

14   adjourned.)

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