Same-sex marriage advocates hopeful

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   THE WEEKLY NEWSPAPER OF NEW YORK STATE GOVERNMENT                                                                                                                Absentee ballots are counted in 20th CD race
                                                                                                                                                                     ...................................page 3




The Legislative Gazette
                                                                                                                                                                    Alan Chartock’s column
                                                                                                                                                                     ...................................page 4
                                                                                                                                                                    Legislature green lights more red light
                                                                                                                                                                    cameras, Gov. is likely to sign law
                                                                                                                                                                     ...................................page 6
                                                                                                                                                                    NYRI pulls plug on power line application
                                                                                                                                                                     .................................page 11
                                                                                                                                                                    New York’s Cancer Treatment Centers
                                                                                                                                                                     ........................pages 14 - 16
                                                                                                                                                                    Higher Education part 2
April 13, 2009 Vol. 32 Number 32                            www.legislativegazette.com                          .O.
                                                                                                               P Box 7329, Albany, NY 12224                          ...................................pullout



                                                                                                                                                                   Same-sex
                                                                                                                                                                   marriage
                                                                                                                                                                   advocates
                                                                                                                                                                   hopeful
                                                                                                                                                                   By KATRINA KIELTYKA
                                                                                                                                                                   Gazette staff writer


                                                                                                                                                                   A
                                                                                                                                                                           fter Vermont and Iowa legalized
                                                                                                                                                                           same-sex marriage in the past
                                                                                                                                                                           two weeks, Alan Van Capelle,
                                                                                                                                                                   executive director of the Empire State
                                                                                                                                                                   Pride Agenda, says he’s “embarrassed”
                                                                                                                                                                   for New York state, where same-sex
                                                                                                                                                                   marriage is still not legal.
                                                                                                                                                                     But because of the razor-thin Democrat
                                                                                                                                                                   majority in the Senate, it is not likely the
                                                                                                                                                                   measure will pass this session.
                                                                                                                                                       AP photo      Iowa’s Supreme Court ruled a ban
Same-sex advocates rally on the campus of the University of Iowa to celebrate a recent Iowa Supreme Court ruling on April 3 that said a ban on same-sex marriage
was unconstitutional. The state of Vermont also legalized same-sex marriage last week. Advocates say the time is right for New York to do the same.                                 See Hopeful on page 21




Reps tip hat Businessman, educator to lead Assembly GOP
for decision
                                                                                                                                                                   By EDWARD J. CARR
                                                                                                                                                                   Gazette staff writer


                                           A
                                                                                                                                                                            ssemblyman Brian Kolb, a
                                                                                                                                                                            Republican from the Finger

to drop cap                                                                                                                                                                 Lakes region, was elected
                                                                                                                                                                   Assembly minority leader April 6 after
                                                                                                                                                                   James Tedisco stepped down from the
                                                                                                                                                                   position three days prior.
By VICTORIA STORY
                                                                                                                                                                     While Tedisco, R-Schenectady, waits
Gazette staff writer


T
                                                                                                                                                                   for the results of the special election
       he rejection of a proposal to cap
                                                                                                                                                                   held in the 20th Congressional District,
       property tax payments New York
                                                                                                                                                                   he voluntarily stepped down from the
       pays on state-owned land is being
                                                                                                                                                                   Assembly minority leader chair. He said
celebrated by lawmakers, municipal
                                                                                                                                                                   this would allow him more time to focus
leaders and groups that advocate for
                                                                                                                                                                   on his campaign and the legal battles
landowners in the Adirondack and
                                                                                                                                                                   that lie ahead as he and Scott Murphy,
Catskill regions.
                                                                                                                                                                   his Democratic opponent, each count on
  The proposal, which
                                                                                                                                                                   incoming absentee ballots and recounts
was part of Gov. David
                                                                                                                                                                   to bring their respective campaigns to
A. Paterson’s Executive
                                                                                                                                                                   victory.
Budget, would have
                                                                                                                                                                     “As the state Board of Elections
capped state payments
                                                                                                                                                                   prepares to count the thousands of
on state-owned lands
                                                                                                                                                                   absentee and military votes cast in the
at 2008-2009 rates and         Griffo
                                                                                                                                                                   special election for the 20th District, I am
reduced payments in lieu
                                                                                                                                                                   fully confident that the final tally will be
of taxes by 6 percent.
                                                                                                                                                                   in our campaign’s favor,” Tedisco said.
The combination of
                                                                                                                                                                   “That process will take a few weeks,
those two actions was
                                                                                                                                                                   and I want our conference’s important
expected to save the
                                                                                                                                                                   agenda to keep moving forward.”
state an estimated $9
                                                                                                                                                                     Kolb, 56, was the minority leader pro
million in 2009-2010
                                                                                                                                                                   tempore, effectively second in command
and $16 million in             Galef                                                                                                                               of the GOP Assembly conference, before
2010-2011, according to
                                                                                                                                                                   Tedisco stepped down. He was elected
an Executive Budget briefing book. Land
                                                                                                                                                                   to New York’s 129th Assembly District
owned by the federal government is
                                                                                                                                                                   in 2000, representing Cayuga, Cortland,
usually not subject to property taxes, so
                                                                                                                                                                   Onondaga, Ontario and Seneca counties.
PILOTs are made to local governments
                                                                                                                                                                   He lives in Canandaigua with his wife
to compensate for that loss in the tax
                                                                                                                                                                   Lauren and has three grown children,
base.
                                                                                                                                                                   sons Britton and Clayton and a daughter,
  Opponents of the proposed cap said it                                                                                   Gazette photo by Edward J. Carr
                                                       Brian M. Kolb, a Canandaigua Republican, was elected Assembly minority leader last week. He                 Kylie.
would have led to higher local property
                                                       replaced James Tedisco, who stepped down while awaiting the results of a too-close-to-call special            While acknowledging “the mold was
taxes that would have been especially                  congressional election in the 20th District. Kolb says, as minority leader, he will ensure the needs
                       See Reps on page 21             of upstate New Yorkers are met.                                                                                             See Educator on page 25
Page 2                                                                                                                                    The Legislative Gazette             April 13, 2009

                   NEWS      IN   BRIEF
New bottle deposit law
to be implemented soon
By EDWARD J. CARR
Gazette staff writer


N
         ew York’s expanded bottle deposit legislation,
         signed into law last week by Gov. David A.
         Paterson, will go into effect June 1.
  As of that date, consumers will be able to redeem a
5-cent deposit on bottled water containers, in addition to
the beer and soda bottles that were already covered by
the state’s deposit law.
  Starting April 15, New York will also collect 80
percent of unclaimed deposits from beverage companies
and divert them to the General Fund. Advocates from
the New York Public Interest Research Group estimate
this could put around $115 million in the state coffers
this year.
  The law also increases the handling fee from 2 cents to
3.5 cents. Handling fees are paid to stores or recycling
centers when they return empty bottles to a bottler,
distributor or other private companies.
  Organizations around the state, including the New
York Association of Convenience Stores and New
Yorkers for Real Recycling Reform, say these provisions
could increase beverage prices significantly.
                                                                                                                                       Photos courtesy of the Museum of the City of New York
EPA eyes Brooklyn’s Gowanus Canal                            An early map of New Amsterdam shows the southern tip of the Island of Manhattan. Celebrations are being planned to commemorate
                                                             the discovery of New York by Henry Hudson in 1609.
The Associated Press


T                                                            New York City marks 400th
        he federal Environmental Protection Agency is
        proposing that Brooklyn’s Gowanus Canal be
        placed on its Superfund National Priorities List.
  That would allow the EPA to investigate contamination
and possible solutions.


                                                             anniversary of Dutch arrival
  Some critics say the move would delay plans to build
luxury waterfront housing. Activist Buddy Scotto told
the New York Post the canal is clean enough now to
support development.
  The EPA is asking for public input.
  The 1.8-mile canal was once dubbed “Lavender Lake”         RICHARD PYLE                                                      two exhibits, and the Dutch consulate in New York lists
for its purplish chemical hue.                               The Associated Press                                              more than 50 events in both cities, ranging from “New


                                                             F
  In 1776, the swampy creek was later dredged to make                our hundred years after Henry Hudson sailed his           York Nights” in Amsterdam to concerts, walking tours,
the canal the scene of fighting in the Battle of Long                ship Half Moon up a river that would one day              and art and flower shows.
Island.                                                              bear his name, historians are marking his role in           In September, a replica of the Half Moon will recreate
                                                             the evolution of a tiny Dutch trading post into a world           its voyage up the Hudson.

Comptroller voids state                                      capital called New York.
                                                               The activity includes exhibits by the Museum of
                                                                                                                                 Arriving Sept. 3, 1609, Hudson sailed up the river
                                                                                                                               discovered by the Italian Giovanni de Verrazano in 1524
                                                             the City of New York and the New York                                         and familiar as well to French, Portuguese
fair’s concert contract                                      Historical Society, a recreation of the
                                                             Half Moon’s voyage of discovery up
                                                                                                                                                and English explorers.
                                                                                                                                                     Along the 150-mile journey,
The Associated Press                                         the Hudson, and scores of events                                                         Hudson traded with the natives —


T
        he state comptroller has voided the contract with    here and in the Netherlands.                                                               trinkets and knives for tobacco
        the company that has already booked several acts       The Englishman’s journey                                                                   — repeatedly ran aground,
        for this year’s New York State Fair, including       under the Dutch flag —                                                                         and gave up when the river
country star Kenny Chesney.                                  Hudson’s 58-foot ship                                                                            became unnavigable.
  A spokeswoman for Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli              left Amsterdam on the                                                                               While      the    Dutch
says his office rejected Triangle Talent Inc.’s $48,500      morning tide of April 4,                                                                           “bought” territory from
contract last Tuesday because it didn’t conform with         1609, and headed west —                                                                             the natives, it was
the request for proposals issued by the state Department     was yet another attempt                                                                             more like paying rent
of Agriculture and Markets, which oversees the fair in       by Europeans to find a                                                                              and giving it back on
Syracuse.                                                    “northwest passage” to                                                                              departure, curator Henry
  Triangle Talent’s contract was more than $600,000 less     Asia. Hudson and his 20                                                                             said. “The Indians did
than the contract the agriculture department awarded to      crewmen got only as far                                                                             not think you could
Live Nation Worldwide to produce concerts at last year’s     as modern-day Albany.                                                                               own land, water or air.
state fair.                                                  But the impact of their                                                                             It wasn’t part of their
  A state fair spokeswoman says the concerts at the 2009     voyage continues to this                                                                            world view.”
fair will go on despite the comptroller’s ruling.            day.                                                                                                  The Dutch brought not
                                                               Spurred by Hudson’s                                                                              only trading skills but
                                                             report of an abundance of                                                                         “freedom of conscience”
                                                             beavers, the Dutch sent fur                                                                     that protected people from
         WANT TO REACH US?                                   traders to America and by                                                                     religious persecution, a
    ADVERTISING....................(518) 473-9739            1621 the newly formed Dutch                                                                  principle later enshrined in the
                                                             West India Co. had established                                                             U.S. Bill of Rights. Although
    EDITORIAL.........................(518) 486-6513
                                                             a settlement called New Amsterdam where Hudson’s                  slavery existed, New Amsterdam, like modern New
    FAX....................................(518) 486-6609    river reached the sea.                                            York, was ethnically diverse, with 18 languages spoken
                                                               That “toehold,” as Museum of the City of New York               in 1660.
   CIRCULATION....................(518) 473-9739             chief curator Sarah Henry calls it, became the focal                New York’s half-century of Dutch history survives
    E-MAIL.........editor@legislativegazette.com             point of New Netherland, a colony reaching from                   mainly in street names, as fires wiped out most early
                                                             present-day Connecticut to Delaware.                              Dutch-style architecture. Henry Hudson has a river, a
    OFFICE...................EMPIRE STATE PLAZA,               Rather than compete with Britain and France for                 highway and a bridge bearing his name, along with a
                  CONCOURSE LEVEL, ROOM 106                  territory, the Dutch concentrated on commerce — and               statue in Henry Hudson Park in the Bronx.
                                                             were good at it.                                                    Myths also survive, a favorite being that the Dutch
                                                               “It’s not well known that the concept of a permanent            bought Manhattan from Indians for $24. That figure,
                                                             company owned by stockholders was an invention of                 based on an 1840 exchange rate, would be “peanuts,”
  We want to hear from you!                                  the Dutch,” Henry said. “This innovative approach to              says Dutch historian Jaap A. Jacobs.
                                                             business helped set the stage for New York’s emergence              A letter written by a Dutch official in 1626 says the
                Send your letters to:                        as a financial and business center.”                              price was “60 guilders” — probably in trade goods,
    editor@legislativegazette.com                              That is among several themes in three planned exhibits          Jacobs says. “It’s difficult to convert any 17th century
                                                             at the museum and one in Holland titled “Amsterdam/               sum into modern currency, but for comparison, a soldier
         and tell us what's on your mind.                    New Amsterdam: The Worlds of Henry Hudson.”                       earned eight to 12 guilders a month, and a skilled
                                                               In addition, the New York Historical Society plans              artisan 300 a year.”
The Legislative Gazette    April 13, 2009                                                                                                                                                     Page 3




20th Congressional District in lawyers’ hands now
  Counting of
   remaining
absentee ballots
 begins today
By T.J. RAPHAEL
Gazette staff writer


T
        he final stretch in the 20th
        Congressional District Special
        Election begins today with the
counting of military and other overseas
absentee ballots — the factor most likely
to determine who will win the vacant
seat in the House of Representatives.
  Both congressional candidates have
taken every precaution in regard to the
counting of absentee ballots, which began
last Wednesday. And the campaigns have
retained veteran election attorneys to
represent them in the extremely close
election.
  Scott Murphy hired Henry T. Berger
to oversee the ballot counting process.
Berger, who is part of The New York
Democratic Lawyers Council, has
represented President Bill Clinton and
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, U.S.                                                                                                                              Gazette photo by Anna Helhoski
Senator John Kerry, D-Mass., Vice            Members of the Rensselaer County Board of Elections inspect absentee ballots at the county office building last week, the first day a court allowed local
                                             boards of elections to begin counting paper ballots in the race for the 20th Congressional District between Scott Murphy and James Tedisco.
President Al Gore and former New York
City Mayor David Dinkins.
  Berger successfully argued the recent      the absentee ballots are counted, Scott              order from the federal court,” adding                legal and proper ballots and ensure this
federal ruling on absentee ballots applies   Murphy will win this election.”                      the Tedisco camp wants the process,                  process is fair. I want to win.”
only to military personnel and all other       Tedisco hired Attorney John Ciampoli               “done and we want it done quickly, but                 The U.S. Justice Department sued the
absentee ballots should be counted at        of the New York State Senate Republican              we want it done right and [we want] as               state days before the March 31 election
their scheduled time. The ruling came in     Campaign Committee and the National                  much as possible to protect the rights of            to ensure that all military ballots will
the Democrat’s favor when Judge James        Republican Lawyers Association.                      the voters.”                                         be counted. A prepared statement from
V. Brands decided domestic ballots may       Ciampoli represented the state Republican              Ciampoli said the federal ruling requires          the U.S. Department of Justice said,
be counted beginning April 8, seven          Committee and the Dutchess County                    machine ballots to be recanvassed before             “The counties in the 20th Congressional
days after the election. Under New York      Conservative                                         paper ballots are                                    District did not mail requested absentee
Election Law, most absentee ballots          Committee prior                                      counted. The lawyer                                  ballots to New York’s military and other
must be postmarked by the day before         to the election to                                   pointed to last week’s                               citizens living abroad until March 12,
the election and arrive by the seventh       remove Libertarian                                   court proceeding in                                  2009, and, in most cases, March 13, 2009.
day after the election.                      candidate        Eric                                which the Greene                                     There were more than 1,300 overseas
  “We’re pleased with today’s court          Sundwall from the                                    County Board of                                      voters entitled to receive absentee ballots
ruling ensuring domestic absentee            ballot, which he                                     Elections said it                                    for [the election], including at least
ballots will begin being counted this        did.                                                 will wait for a court                                471 military voters presently stationed
week,” said Berger April 6 in a prepared       Ciampoli views                                     order to recanvass                                   overseas.” Today is the last day for the
statement. “The people of the 20th           the Department of              Tedisco               the machines in light         Murphy                 boards of elections to accept absentee
Congressional District need their votes      Justice’s ruling differently than Berger,            of a previous impound order for all paper            ballots from military personnel.
counted in a timely manner, so they can      saying it applies to all paper ballots, not          ballots.                                               Recanvassing is the process of going
be represented in Congress as quickly        just those from military personnel. In                 When asked what the most important                 over the original tallied votes that have
as possible in these tough economic          a telephone interview he said, “I think              aspect of this election is Ciampoli said,            been returned and ensuring they have
times. We are confident that once all        that is the better and safer reading of the          “Our position is and will be to count the                               See District on page 23




No sign of compromise
in union layoff talks
By MATTHEW ARCO                              negotiate with individual state employees
Gazette staff writer                         and not the union leadership — an action


T
        he standoff between Gov. David       they say goes against the Taylor Law.
        A. Paterson and labor unions           The Taylor Law protects the rights of
        continued to drag on last week as    workers to form unions and provides
the threat to layoff 8,700 people turned     them with certain protections, including
into a numbered list of government           requirements of how state and local
employees set to lose their jobs by July     governments negotiate with unions.
1.                                             “We’re going to fight like hell for every
  Top union officials announced they         member we have,” said Danny Donohue,
would not concede under the governor’s       president of CSEA, at a joint news
pressure to reopen union contracts and       conference with PEF last Wednesday.                                                                                   Gazette photo by Anand Balasar
said they intend to file an improper         “We’re also here to ask whether or not              PEF President Ken Brynien, left, and CSEA President Danny Donohue meet with reporters last
practice charge with the Public              the governor understands what the term              Wednesday to explain their opposition to the governor’s plan to lay off 8,700 state workers.
Employment Relations Board over a            mental health means, because we think
letter sent out by the governor to all       he needs a good psychiatrist, or at least            number of job cuts each state agency                 Mental Retardation and Developmental
union members.                               he should share the drugs that he’s on               must make by summer. The list calls                  Disabilities with 1,434 planned cuts and
  The Civil Service Employee                 because he’s not making any sense to                 for 8,700 job cuts — 200 less than                   Mental Health with 1,054.
Association and the Public Employers         any of our members.”                                 originally planned — with correctional                 Other state agencies slated for cuts
Federation said the governor attempted         Backlash from union leaders came                   services, at 2,021 scheduled cuts, taking            include the New York State Police
to undermine the unions by trying to         after Paterson released a list with the              the largest hit, followed by the Office of                               See Layoff on page 23
Page 4                                                                                                               OPINION PAGE                                               The Legislative Gazette             April 13, 2009




In troubled times, the trick is to play it straight
F                     PUBLISHER’S
       or a few brief moments, once                                                                                                                                                  plebiscite. Subsequently, they’ve been
       when Mario Cuomo became                                                                                                                                                       gutted so that Michael Bloomberg could
       governor and then when Eliot                                                                                                                                                  run again. I told them that as long as
Spitzer took the reins, it looked like we                                                                                                                                            things continued as they are now, there



                        CORNER
might see some changes in the way in                                                                                                                                                 was little likelihood that state legislators
which things are done in Albany. In both                                                                                                                                             of any party would vote to cut their own
cases, things stayed the same. Despite                                                                                                                                               throats and end their political careers.
his low poll numbers, David Paterson                                                                                                                                                   So, we are stuck with what we have.
is a good man but when he took office,                                                                                                                                               The Republicans certainly didn’t
he decided to take a different path from                                                                                                                                             distinguish themselves when they were
that of his predecessor. As the son of an
                                                                                                                               BY ALAN S. CHARTOCK                                   in office. Their dreadful treatment of the
insider and a lifelong insider himself,                                                                                                                                              minority Democrats when they were in
he concluded that there was no good                                    same old all around him. His numbers                     election, the Democrats could lose the               charge of the Senate makes them most
reason to challenge the system. He knew                                took a dive after Kirsten Gillibrand                     Senate. The consequent redistricting                 unsympathetic as they cry in their beer
how it worked and he worked it. For a                                  became the senator and after Team                        and gerrymandering could keep the                    that the Democrats are not playing fair.
while, things went his way. Fatigued                                   Paterson trashed Caroline Kennedy.                       Republicans in power for a long time to              The fact is, everyone knows that the
New Yorkers thanked their lucky stars                                    Now we have more same old, same                        come. If Paterson’s numbers stay low,                Democrats are much fairer to the minority
that the implosion of the system — Joe                                 old than ever before. True, we got a                     you can expect that he will be visited               Republicans than said Republicans were
Bruno’s downfall and Spitzer’s flameout                                fairly on-time budget but it was laden                   upon by senior Democrats asking him to               when the tables were turned.
— was over. Paterson made friends                                      with good old-fashioned pork. The                        step aside. Then enter Andrew Cuomo.                   The Democrats know that the state
with Shelly Silver and got along with                                  conservatives have had a field day                         I recently spoke to the statewide social           is getting bluer and bluer. The trick in
his former Senate colleague, Malcolm                                   criticizing the significantly above-the-                 studies association. Someone in the                  these treacherous economic times is to
Smith. Paterson had been a good friend                                 rate-of-inflation budget. The stimulus                   audience asked me what I thought of the              play it straight and do what is good for
of Joe Bruno’s. One of the worst things                                money that was used to close the gap                     idea of term limits for state legislators.           the people, not for their special interest
that happened to the new governor was                                  might be a good thing, assuming the                      I responded that since the system had                friends. They have to understand that
that Bruno was forced out and the next                                 recession is over in two years when that                 become so self-serving, I would support              if they go back to the insider, lobbyist-
guy up on the Republican side was the                                  money runs out. If it isn’t, there will                  such a thing. I told them what they                  driven clubhouse days, they will be
far more belligerent Dean Skelos. When                                 be a gaping hole in that year’s budget.                  already knew: unless we had the ability to           cutting their own throats. And, of course,
you are a Long Islander, you’ve got to                                 There’s a tremendous amount at stake.                    put such questions on the ballot through             it goes without saying that the longer
be tough. If you don’t believe me, try                                 If the Democrats screw it up and run a                   initiative and referendum, it would never            the voters look the other way and don’t
driving on the Southern State Parkway.                                 weakened governor and Barack Obama                       happen. I pointed out that term limits               pay attention, the longer these folks will
So there was Paterson with the same old,                               is not leading the ticket in a national                  got on the ballot in Gotham in a voter               continue on their current path to failure.
Letters to the Editor

Anyone who isn’t bought   Don’t tax schools to bail out MTA
and owned should be angry N
                                                                                                                                To the editor:                                       Island, they would bear the greatest
                                                                                                                                         owhere but in the increasingly              share of this portion of the MTA bailout
                                                                                                                                         bizarre world of New York                   with funds derived from the most
                                                                                                                                         state government would school               overburdened source of government
To the editor:                                                         worst, most out of balance budget in our                 budgets be raided to fund a transit                  revenues…the local property taxpayer.


T
       he new state budget sounds the                                  history. It takes no account of the world-               system!                                                Equally disconcerting is that New
       death-knell for Reform in New                                   wide economic uncertainty, reflects no                     Deceptively presented as a “mobility               York’s first payroll tax would establish
       York. Drafted in the dark by                                    understanding of permanent changes on                    tax,” the MTA payroll scheme is a direct             a new revenue stream for the state,
three-men-in-a-room with no hearings                                   Wall Street, ignores business weakness                   tax on employers. As school districts are            one that could be readily accessed
and no public involvement, it is the                                                            See Owned on page 25            among the largest employers on Long                                        See MTA on page 24
                                                                                                                                Voice From the Capitol


                                                                                                                                New York state must
   The Legislative Gazette publishes in Albany under the auspices of the Research Foundation of the State
   University of New York. The Legislative Gazette is a Research Foundation project that is sponsored and
                                                                                                                                reform authorities now
                                                                                                                                From Assemblyman Richard Brodsky                     deal, the 7 line extension, the two sets of


                                                                                                                                P
   administrated by the State University of New York at New Paltz. The Gazette is produced in part by English/
   Journalism, Economics/Business and Political Science students for the legislative community in cooperation                          ublic authorities lie deep in the             books, the failure to ask for public financial
   with the State University Research Foundation. It is published weekly from September through June.                                  shadows of New York state                     support before seeking fare increases, and the
                                                                                                                                       government. These Soviet-style                focus on trivial matters such as E-Z passes
                                                                                                                                bureaucracies        operate                         for board members. All of these decisions
      Executive Publisher and Project Director                         Correspondence should be addressed to The
     Prof. Alan S. Chartock (518) 465-5233, Ext. 150                   Legislative Gazette, P.O. Box 7329, Albany, N.Y.         without oversight, in secret,                        have left the public and the state Legislature
                     Editor/Instructor                                 12224, or may be dropped off at the Gazette offices,     and directly affect the lives                        with little confidence and an opportunity for
              James Gormley (518) 486-6513                             Empire State Plaza, Concourse Level, room 106.           of millions of New Yorkers                           involvement going forward.
         Deputy Editor/Internship Coordinator                          E-Mail address: editor@legislativegazette.com.           every day. We focus on                                 While the MTA crisis is fresh in our
              Joseph A. Brill (518) 473-6862                           News department: (518) 486-6513. Advertising:            them in moments of crisis,                           minds, it is by no means an isolated
                                                                       (518) 473-9739, Circulation: (518) 473-9738.             most recently on the MTA,                            example of authority abuse. This past
                      Reporting Staff                                                                                                                           Brodsky
                                                                       Newspapers are printed by Denton Publications,
     Matthew Arco        Anna M. Helhoski             T.J. Raphael
                                                                       Inc. Elizabethtown, NY.
                                                                                                                                the Thruway Authority,                               year, the Thruway Authority raised its
    (518) 473-5555        (518) 486-7388            (518) 486-7391
     Anand Balasar       Lauren N. Johnson           Victoria Story
                                                                                                                                and the Power Authority.                             tolls with little input from the public
    (518) 486-7393        (518) 473-9735            (518) 473-0816     Advertisements appearing in this publication are           The problems at the MTA are almost too             or the legislature, the Power Authority
    Edward J. Carr         Gregory Jones                               for informational purposes only and are placed on        numerous to list: the corrupt 2 Broadway
    (518) 473-9732        (518) 473-7387
                                                                       a first serve basis. No endorsement of the products,                                                                         See Authorities on page 24
    Kristen Hanmer        Katrina Kieltyka
    (518) 473-9736        (518) 486-7389                               services, organizations or options advertised herein     Other Voice
     General Manager and Advertising Director                          is intended or should be implied.

                                                                                                                                Leaders driving us all into a ditch
             Glenn S. Vadney (518) 473-9739
                                                                       All display advertisements submitted for publication
                Special Section Manager
                                                                       must be clearly defined with the sponsor’s name.
              Gina McCarthy (518) 473-9737
              Advertising Representatives                              Annual subscription price is $99.                        The Daily Freeman of Kingston                        stimulus aid of more than $6 billion


                                                                                                                                N
             Kathy Howland (518) 486-6514                                                                                                ew York’s three top political               to close a gap that had grown to $17.7
             Eileen Tavenner (518) 473-8688                            First class postage paid at Albany, N.Y.                          leaders — Gov. David Paterson,              billion.
            Corrinne Blackman (518) 474-2427                           POSTMASTER:
             Nancy Dvorscak (518) 486-7396                                                                                               Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver               It will raise taxes on the affluent.
 Ass. General Mgr/Circulation/Production Manager                       Send Address changes to The Legislative Gazette,         and Senate Majority Leader Malcolm                     It will increase — not decrease — aid
                Beth Rider (518) 473-9738                              P.O. Box 7329, Albany, N.Y. 12224.                       Smith, all Democrats — crafted the state’s           to school districts by $1.1 billion to more
                     Graphic Designer
                                                                                                                                2009-2010 fiscal year budget in near                 than $21 billion.
                             JD Proulx                                 Glenn C. Doty, Editor Emeritus                           total secrecy, so there is more than a little          It does not address a potential $4
                                                                                                                                uncertainty about exactly what happened              billion midyear deficit that state officials
                                            The Legislative Gazette Advisory Board                                              in Albany World last week.                           were projecting at the moment they
      William Rainbolt                       Ann Cohen                       Eileen Gilligan             Shawn Murphy             But here’s what we do know about the               announced the budget agreement.
      University at Albany               Hunter College, CUNY                 SUNY Oswego                SUNY Plattsburgh       new state budget.                                      Legislators will not give up a single
         Michael Arena                     E.J. Conzola II                    Lonnie Isabel                Rik Stevens            At $131.8 billion, it raises spending an           penny of the $170 million in pork
            CUNY                           Morrisville State          CUNY Grad. School of Journalism   The Associated Press
         Cailin Brown                        Ross Daly                       Robert Miraldi                Pat Sullivan         astonishing 8.7 percent over 2008-2009.              they dole out annually, part of Albany
     College of Saint Rose                  SUNY Purchase                    SUNY New Paltz              SUNY New Paltz           It relies heavily on one-shot federal                                   See Ditch on page 24
The Legislative Gazette   April 13, 2009                                                        Page 5




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Both houses give green light to more red light cameras
By MATTHEW ARCO
Gazette staff writer


T
        raffic light cameras already in
        place in New York City, meant to
        catch drivers who run red lights,
will likely be added to other parts of
the state, even as civil liberties groups
and some lawmakers have expressed
concerns over the initiative.
  Legislation allowing for pilot programs
in Long Island, Yonkers, Rochester,
Buffalo and Syracuse passed both houses
last week and is expected to be signed
by the governor. Each test region could
have as many as 50 cameras installed at
different intersections, with fines up to
$50 for running a red light. The bills will
also expand New York City’s number
of cameras by 50, totaling 150 red light
cameras.
  Assemblyman David Gantt, chair of
the Assembly Transportation Committee,
when asked if he supported red light
cameras, said “I don’t. They’re an
invasion of privacy.”
  But although Gantt, D-Rochester,
doesn’t like the idea of the cameras, he
said he sponsored the Assembly bill since
the cameras are expected to raise revenue
and therefore benefit local residents.
  Generating revenue from people
breaking the law is also something
Sen. Martin Malave Dilan, chair of the                                                                                                                                                 AP photo
Senate Transportation Committee, said         Gov. David A. Paterson is expected to approve a new law that would allow the placement of cameras near intersections to capture the license plates
                                              of those who run red lights in several communities across the state. Supporters say the law will keep drivers safe and generate needed revenue.
he supports. “I support [the cameras]         Opponents say it violates civil rights.
because more than anything they raise
money from people going through red           the cameras permanent. “If I’m still              cameras and citizens’ personal privacy.            the letter said. “Once in the possession
lights,” said Dilan, D-Brooklyn. “It’s a      chair then, I would vote to extend it,”             “Beyond capturing images of                      of state officials, a car’s license plate
public safety issue, and the public will      Dilan said.                                       individuals, electronic surveillance               number can provide access to highly
benefit from them.”                             The New York Civil Liberties Union              technology can be used to collect and              sensitive personal information.”
  The pilot program is scheduled to           sent a letter to Gantt highlighting the           store information that indicates an                  In addition to possible sensitive
sunset in 2014, but lawmakers are             organization’s concerns about red light           individual’s location and travel patterns,”                             See Cameras on page 24
already saying they would like to make




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The Legislative Gazette      April 13, 2009                                                                                                                                                Page 7




AG’s Project Sunlight continues to evolve
By KRISTEN HANMER
Gazette staff writer


A
         ttorney General Andrew Cuomo
         unveiled an upgraded version of
         his government accountability
and transparency Web site geared toward
the public. The site has been redesigned
as Sunlight 2.0, a more user-friendly
version of Project Sunlight with new
features and data.
  “This re-tooled Web site increases
accountability and openness, and gives
the public the tools to hold officials more
accountable, which is more important
than ever before,” said Cuomo.
  Taking its name from the saying
“sunlight is the best disinfectant,”
Project Sunlight was initially created
in 2007 — under the guidance of New
York Public Interest Research Group
Legislative Director Blair Horner, who
left NYPIRG at the time to work on
the project — with the intention of
providing the public with easy access to
information related to state government,
such as campaign finance, state contracts
and how tax dollars are spent.
  “When Project Sunlight was first
launched, I said that it was not a final
product, but a foundation for making an
even better resource for all New Yorkers,”
said Cuomo. “It is vital that Sunlight
continues to expand and evolve as we
incorporate new ideas and information.”
Now, as a result of user feedback, Sunlight
2.0 contains several new features and is
comprised mainly of three sections.
  The first is a database to browse items
such as state contracts, state corporations,
legislation and bill jackets, which may
                                                                                                                                                                                        AP photo
include a sponsor’s memo, counsels’            Attorney General Andrew Cuomo announcing the launch of Project Sunlight, a Web site that allows voters and taxpayers to view campaign contributions
statements, state agencies’ official           and member item spending, in 2007. The sight was updated last week to include new information and make it easier for users.
positions and opinions of lobbyists,
corporations and private individuals.          maps allowing users to geographically                Several good government groups                   to local government information. It’s a
  The second is a search function for          locate member items, elected officials             applauded Cuomo’s continued efforts                welcoming gateway for New Yorkers
information on contracts, member               and local government entities. All 10,036          toward government accountability. Barbara          to find out what’s going on and who is
items and other discretionary state            member items in the 2008-2009 budget               Bartoletti, legislative director for the           influencing government in New York.”
funding allocated by the Legislature,          are available for review on the site, as           League of Women Voters, said, “League                Project Sunlight, which features video
corporations, charities, lobbyists and         well as 3,000 completed member item                members have used Project Sunlight with            tutorials, also serves as an educational
campaign finance. There is also a new          dispositions from the attorney general’s           great success and welcome these and                resource, offering information on
“smart search” feature for the New York        review of the 2006-2007 budget. Links to           future upgrades to its data and usability.”        the basics of state government, how
State Campaign Finance database able           the 2009-2010 budget are also available              Russ Haven, legislative counsel for              candidates report campaign finances
to overcome mistakes from common               on the site. Other new features include            NYPIRG said, “Project Sunlight                     and what lobbyists are required to
misspellings, variations, acronyms and         the ability to move search data to an              continues to grow into a wider and deeper          report. Nearly 70,000 visitors have used
transpositions in search terms.                Excel spreadsheet and the option for               resource, with the latest additions adding         the Web site to look up government
  The third section features interactive       Spanish translation.                               more state legislative bills and access            information.



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Page 8                                                                                                                                       The Legislative Gazette              April 13, 2009




                                                                                                                                                                                  AP photo
Louise Backus of Binghamton leaves flowers at a memorial at the American Civic Association in Binghamton last Tuesday. Gun control groups say the recent massacre at the immigration center
shows the need for better gun control in New York.




Gun control groups say Binghamton Rampage
incident shows the need for reforms tests 911
By MATTHEW ARCO                                 gun industry to stop capitalizing on those      America’s gun crisis.”



                                                                                                                                                  training
Gazette staff writer                            ginned-up fears to spread weapons of              The New York State Rifle and Pistol


I
    n the wake of several shootings             war among the public.”                          Association said it’s typical for gun
    around the country — including the            New Yorkers Against Gun Violence              reform advocates to use cases of violent
    recent Binghamton massacre that left        say there are pieces of legislation the         attacks as a reason to push for new
13 people dead — groups advocating for          group is looking to get passed this year        laws.
gun reform laws say the time is right for       while the New York State Rifle and                “They try to use an event like this to          By JOHN KEKIS
revisiting the state’s gun laws.                Pistol Association says existing laws are       further their agenda,” said Thomas King,          The Associated Press


                                                                                                                                                  M
  New       Yorkers                             tough enough —                                  president of the association. “New York                      ichael Ballard rushed to the 911
Against         Gun                             the problem is they                             has the second tightest gun laws in the                      call center knowing his staff
Violence and the                                aren’t enforced.                                nation. Unless the laws in effect are                        was flooded with information
Brady Campaign                                    “In a nation with                             enforced and policed, no laws are going           as a gunman assaulted a Binghamton
to Prevent Gun                                  over 280 million                                to be effective.”                                 immigrants center and killed 13 people
Violence are calling                            guns, a patchwork                                 King said there are enough laws in the          on the morning of April 3.
on lawmakers to                                 of weak gun laws                                state to effectively keep guns out of the           “The dispatchers were handling it like
recognize what they                             and easy access                                 hands of people who shouldn’t have them           any other call,” Ballard said. “There was
call the country’s                              to firearms, high                               and criminals who commit crimes with a            no panic, nothing. You wouldn’t have
gun “crisis.”                Schimel
                                                powered         gun       Schneiderman
                                                                                                firearm should face stiff penalties.              known what was going on.”
  “After        each                            tragedies        are                              “It’s easy to say ‘take the guns away             The six women and five men working the
horrific shooting, some leaders in              certain to continue unless our nation’s         and the problem will go away,’” he said.          phones were trying to sort out the details,
Washington have said the solution is to         gun laws are strengthened,” said Jackie         “What makes you think if you take away            directing rescuers and comforting victims,
do nothing, simply continue to enforce          Hilly, executive director of New Yorkers        all the legal guns the criminals won’t            including 61-year-old Shirley DeLucia,
the existing laws, just as we have been         Against Gun Violence. “Our legislators,         have them?”                                       a receptionist shot in the abdomen by
doing,” said Paul Helmke, president of          with few exceptions, demonstrate a                “Criminals don’t obey the laws, when            Jiverly Wong moments after he walked
the Brady Campaign. “It is time for the         troubling lack of leadership in tackling                             See Gun on page 22                                See Training on page 21



NY lawmakers asked to consider coalition’s circuit breaker tax plan
By ANNA HELHOSKI                                R-Queensbury, and Assemblywoman                 when considering what to do about high            in town,” said Johnson spokesman
Gazette staff writer                            Sandy Galef, D-Ossining. There are              property taxes, wanted to find a way to           Rich Azzopardi, when asked whether


T
        he elimination of the STAR rebate       a number of differences between the             assist people who need help the most.             Little’s legislation stood a chance of
        program in the 2009-2010 state          consortium’s proposal and the Galef/            Galef said a circuit breaker would do just        getting passed by the Investigations and
        budget has prompted a coalition         Little bill, but both are meant to replace      that by taking into account how much              Government Operations Committee.
of property tax reform groups to urge           the rebate that was provided through            people are able to afford to pay in taxes.          Azzopardi said competing legislation is
state leaders to commit to helping middle       the state’s School Tax Relief, or STAR,           The consortium’s proposal is based              already being considered, including bill
class homeowners by passing an omnibus          Program which was eliminated in the             on the Galef/Little bill, which was               S.1849, which was introduced by Senate
circuit breaker bill.                           new state budget.                               referred to the Assembly Ways and                 Deputy Minority Leader Jeff Klein,
  A property tax reform group, the                “Property taxes are one of the most           Means Committee on March 20 and                   D-Bronx, and is co-sponsored by Johnson.
Omnibus Consortium, is pushing for              burdensome financial issues New Yorkers         on Jan. 7 to the Senate Investigations            Klein’s bill, which has no same-as in the
the adoption of its proposal for a circuit      have to deal with,” said Galef, who             and Government Operations Committee,              Assembly, was referred to the Senate’s
breaker bill modeled after legislation          serves as chairwoman of the Assembly            which is chaired by Sen. Craig M.                 Local Government Committee on Feb. 9
(S.253/A.7094) re-introduced this               Real Property Taxation Committee. The           Johnson, D-Port Washington.                       and includes both a circuit breaker and a
year by Sen. Elizabeth O’C. Little,             assemblywoman said she and Little,                “Galef/Little is not the only game                                    See Circuit on page 22
The Legislative Gazette      April 13, 2009                                                                                                                                                                  Page 9



Report shows problems with drug-pricing web site
By ANAND BALASAR
Gazette staff writer


T
        he New York Public Interest
        Research Group released a report
        it says shows the state Health
Department’s prescription drug database
is incomplete and inaccurate.
  “There are millions of New Yorkers who
lack basic coverage for health insurance,”
said Blair Horner, legislative director of
NYPIRG. “There are many more who
lack prescription drug coverage even
though they have health insurance.”
  The Department of Health in 2006
was required by law to create a Web
site allowing consumers to easily
compare prescription prices. The Web
site, rx.nyhealth.gov/pdpw, displays
pricing information for 150 of the most
prescribed drugs, allowing consumers to
search by zip code, city or county.
  This was an initiative taken to reduce
the stress on consumers who previously
had to visit a number of pharmacies to
seek the lowest drug price available.
  “This clearly shows that New York
state needs to do a better job with
the prescription drug Web site,” said
Tom Boehlert of AARP, referring to
NYPIRG’s report.
  The report, titled The Price Is Not                                                                                                                                              Gazette photo by Victoria Story
Right, showed there are fewer                           Blair Horner, right, legislative director for the New York Public Interest Research Group, is joined by lobbyists for AARP to bring attention to mistakes in
                                                        a state-run Web site designed to offer consumers price comparisons of 150 popular prescription drugs. NYPIRG and AARP are saying the state needs
pharmacies listed on the Web site than                  to do a better job updating the information and require more pharmacies to submit their drug prices.
are actually licensed by the state. There
are currently 4,855 pharmacies registered               services,” said Boehlert.                             seven displayed the Web site information                Horner said, “The law needs to be
with the State Education Department,                      NYPIRG and AARP say a full and                      in their stores.                                      fixed… and there needs to be boosted
while there are only 4,429 listed on the                complete list is necessary to prevent                   “Without information on pricing there               enforcement of the existing law to make
Health Department’s pricing disclosure                  consumers from overspending on drugs                  is no way for people to make informed                 sure people can benefit.”
database.                                               when it can be avoided. For example,                  decisions on purchasing prescription                    “One reason the law is weak is because
  The report also showed that none of the               a $558 price difference was found in                  drugs at the most cost effective prices,”             it relies on the state Medicaid database
pharmacies in the department’s database                 Suffolk County for Singulair — the                    said Boehlert.                                        to get prices. The Medicaid database
displayed prices for all 150 drugs, which               largest price difference found in the                   NYPIRG is looking for reform of the                 is limited,” said Horner. “If you live in
is also required by the law. Some entries               state. Horner said, “If you’re paying full            program by requiring that pharmacies                  a very affluent area, let’s say Delmar
on the department’s Web site also seemed                retail it can save you hundreds if not                electronically report all 150 prescription            or Loudonville, there may be very few
to be erroneous; one glaring example                    thousands of dollars if you go to the least           drug prices to the state. They also want              Medicaid beneficiaries that go to the
is the price of Ambien in Huntington,                   expensive pharmacy.”                                  the Department of Education to require                pharmacy. In those pharmacies, the prices
Suffolk County, which is displayed at                     The legislation passed in 2005                      pharmacies to display the Department of               will never show up. So it wouldn’t help
$860,603 for a 30-day supply.                           requires pharmacies to display a sign                 Health’s Web site and have the Health                 you to comparison shop in Loudonville
  “In the report published last year,                   in bold, block letters with the Health                Department monitor the quality of the                 or Delmar because the prices wouldn’t
AARP found that price increases for                     Department’s Web site. The report states              data provided and release an annual                   be there.”
brand name drugs far outpace the price                  that NYPIRG did an independent spot                   report of the program’s performance to                  “We think that the state should require
increases for other consumer goods and                  check of 55 pharmacies and found only                 the public.                                           that [all] the prices be posted,” he said.



New Web site compares per-capita spending in each county
By EDWARD J. CARR                                       discrepancies between spending and tax                promote economic growth.”                             It includes tax totals and per-capita
Gazette staff writer                                    rates between counties, excluding the                    Along with the Business Council,                   spending for 1,604 localities around the


T
       wo      fiscally   conservative                  five boroughs of New York City.                       the Empire Center for New York State                  state.
       organizations joined forces last                   “This new tool … will allow taxpayers               Policy helped compile and calculate the                 When the Comptroller’s Office releases
       week to create an online database                and the media to measure government                   data for the new Web site. The report,                data for 2008 at the end of this year, the
that displays per-capita spending and                   performance,” said Kenneth Adams,                     titled Benchmark New York, is available               Web site is expected to be updated.
tax rates for counties, towns, cities                   president of The Business Council of                  at www.SeeThroughNY.net.                                Assembly Minority Leader Brian Kolb,
and villages in an effort to increase                   New York State. “It also provides a                      The information in the report was                  R-Canandaigua, applauded the site
government transparency.                                framework for helping localities to more              taken from figures gathered in 2007                   saying, “The Business Council and the
  The groups hope to demonstrate the                    effectively compete, attract jobs and                 by the Office of the State Comptroller.                                 See Spending on page 23




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Page 10                                                                                                                                               The Legislative Gazette           April 13, 2009



Gov. should not run in 2010, voters say Budget is
By GREGORY JONES
Gazette staff writer
                                                                                                                                                           not popular
G                                                                                                                                                          among voters
          ov. David A. Paterson has
          not seen any improvement in
          his dismal approval ratings,
and a majority of voters now say
                                                                                                                                                           By MATTHEW ARCO
he should consider not running for                                                                                                                         Gazette staff writer


                                                                                                                                                           S
governor in 2010.                                                                                                                                                 ixty percent of New Yorkers say
  According to a Quinnipiac University                                                                                                                            they disapprove of the enacted
poll released last week, 53 percent of                                                                                                                            2009-2010 budget, according to a
voters say Paterson should not run                                                                                                                         Quinnipiac University poll released last
for a four-year term next year, while                                                                                                                      week.
39 percent say he could still restore                                                                                                                        While only 16 percent of voters polled
his reputation and should run next                                                                                                                         said they approved of the budget, 65
year. Even 49 percent of Democrats                                                                                                                         percent of New Yorkers agreed it was
say Paterson should drop out of the                                                                                                                        “business as usual in Albany” and said
race now compared to 45 percent who                                                                                                                        Gov. David A. Paterson and legislative
don’t.                                                                                                                                                     leaders lacked the political courage to
  New York voters disapprove 60 to 28                                                                                                                      make tough decisions.
percent of the job Paterson is doing,                                                                                                                        When asked if New York state
                                                                                                                                                           government is dysfunctional, 71 percent
giving him the lowest approval rating
                                                                                                                                                           of voters said they agreed with the
in the history of the Quinnipiac poll for
                                                                                                                                                           statement, while 23 percent disagreed.
a New York governor. As lawmakers
                                                                                                                                                           Responsibility is spread evenly across
struggled to pass on-time budget, voters                                                                                                                   party lines; 21 percent blame Paterson,
disapprove 70 to 19 percent of the way                                                                                                                     25 percent blame Democrats and 21
Paterson handled the process.                                                                                                                              percent say Republicans are the reason
  “The slide started with the Caroline                                                                                                                     state government is dysfunctional.
Kennedy flap and deepened with                                                                                                                               Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver got
the humongous state budget passed                                                                                                                          a negative approval rating — 28 to 36
last week,” said Maurice Carroll,                                                                                                                          percent — with 36 percent of voters polled
director of the Quinnipiac University                                                                                           Gazette file photo         saying they were undecided about Silver.
Polling Institute. “The budget was an             Gov. David A. Paterson, pictured here with Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver as the final budget             “Speaker Sheldon Silver emerged
                                                  was being negotiated, is unpopular among voters according to a new Quinnipiac University poll and        from the budget fuss as the most
opportunity for Paterson to reverse his           some voters say he should not consider a run for governor in 2010.
slide, but voters disapprove almost four                                                                                                                   powerful,” Carroll said. “As powerful
to one of the way he handled it.”                 would defeat Giuliani 53 to 36 percent in            Gillibrand trailed U.S. Rep. Carolyn                as any speaker has ever been, yet a big
  If a Democratic primary were held               a head-to-head match up, the poll found.           McCarthy 33 to 29 percent in a                        percentage of voters don’t know him
today, Attorney General Andrew Cuomo                                                                                                                       well enough to decide if he’s good or
                                                    U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand is also             potential primary race, with 33 percent
                                                                                                                                                           bad at this point. They better learn.”
would beat Paterson 61 to 18 percent,             facing a low approval rating. Sixty four           undecided. However, Gillibrand leads
                                                                                                                                                             The poll was conducted between April
according to the poll. In a general               percent of voters said they do not know            U.S. Rep. Peter King 40 to 28 percent
                                                                                                                                                           1 and 5. It surveyed 1,528 registered
election, Republican Rudolph Giuliani             enough about Gillibrand to form an                 in a general election, with 28 percent                voters in the state and has a margin of
tops Paterson 53 to 32 percent. Cuomo             opinion of her.                                    undecided.                                            error of 2.5 percentage points.




                                                                                                     Lawmakers split pork as
                                                                                                     Paterson declines share
                                                                                                     MICHAEL GORMLEY                                         Silver, D-Manhattan, said the $685,000
                                                                                                     The Associated Press                                  grant serves a critical need for the


                                                                                                     L
                                                                                                              egislators are divvying up $170              poor through an organization roundly
                                                                                                              million in pork-barrel spending              supported and praised by state and city
                                                                                                              that escaped any cut in this fiscal          government as well as other politicians
                                                                                                     crisis except for the governor’s refusal of           including former President George W.
                                                                                                     his traditional share.                                Bush.
                                                                                                       The grants, directed by lawmakers to                  “I would suggest that in one of the days
                                                                                                     social services groups and popular civic              you are not here, go down and find out
                                                                                                     groups in their districts, should be made             how many poor people are served, how
                                                                                                     public by the end of the month.                       many immigrants are served, how many
                                                                                                       Breaking recent tradition dating to                 people depend on it for their meals,
                                                                                                     the Pataki administration, Gov. David                 their clothing, their furniture and their
                                                                                                     Paterson declined the governor’s usual                social services,” Silver told reporters.
                                                                                                     cut of $30 million in grants.                         “Take a look before you criticize.”
                                                                                                       “Given the historic economic crisis we                If this year is similar to most recent
                                                                                                     are in, the governor decided to forego any            years, Silver, who is the most senior of
                                                                                                     member item spending,” said Paterson                  leaders in Albany, will issue about $7
                                                                                                     spokesman Errol Cockfield.                            million in so-called member items to
                                                                                                       The grants will be detailed by the                  more than 100 groups.
                                                                                                     Senate and Assembly after a 10-day                      Good-government advocates have
                                                                                                     period during which the governor can                  criticized many of the grants as pork
                                                                                                     veto elements of the 2009-2010 state                  used by incumbents to win votes back
                                                                                                     budget adopted last week. But Paterson                home and by their leaders, who decide
                                                                                                     already agreed to the total spending.                 on allocations, to keep the rank-and-
                                                                                                       Assembly          Speaker       Sheldon             file in line. The $170 million is split
                                                                                                     Silver recently defended his annual                   between the Senate and Assembly, with

     COVERING NEW YORK STATE                                                                         appropriation to the Metropolitan
                                                                                                     Council on Jewish Poverty, run by the
                                                                                                                                                           more senior members of the majority
                                                                                                                                                           Democratic party getting more than

      GOVERNMENT ON THE AIR                                                                          husband of Silver’s chief of staff. The
                                                                                                     aid group provides services throughout
                                                                                                                                                           Republicans, who are in the minority of
                                                                                                                                                           both chambers.

           AND ONLINE                                                                                New York City and gets grants from
                                                                                                     other lawmakers.
                                                                                                                                                             The grants are less than 1 percent of the
                                                                                                                                                           $131.8 billion overall budget.
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The Legislative Gazette     April 13, 2009                                                                                                                                              Page 11



NYRI withdraws controversial power line application
By KRISTEN HANMER
Gazette staff writer


T
        he company that wanted to build
        a $2 billion, 190-mile, high-
        voltage power line to alleviate
downstate energy concerns by tapping
upstate resources, officially suspended
its application last Monday, effectively
abandoning the project.
   Principals behind the New York
Regional Interconnect said their decision
came as a direct response to a recent
ruling by the Federal Energy Regulatory
Commission that made the project too
risky financially.
   FERC recently approved new rules
for transmission tariffs affecting how
projects such as this one could recover
their investment costs.
   “The process set forth a screening
process for determining cost recovery
that NYRI believes would exclude any
significant transmission project from
meeting the initial screen,” said Len
Singer, general counsel for NYRI. He also
said the screening process does not take
into account public policy or the impact
of the project, which he says in this case,
would have benefited the state by helping
it meet renewable energy goals.
   Additionally, if the project were to
make it through the screening process,
Singer explained it would be subject
                                                                                                                                                                                       AP photos
to a vote from its beneficiaries, and
                                              LEFT: A map of the proposed route for the 190-mile power line proposed by New York Regional Interconnect. RIGHT: Protesters outside a NYRI hearing
in this case, that would have included        in Rochester last year demonstrate the size of a proposed base for the towers that would have traversed much of central New York if the project had
competitors who previously indicated          been approved. The company withdrew its application last week.
they would not support the line. NYRI
requested a rehearing of the rules but        the investors determined the financial             County to New Windsor, Orange County,              by addressing problems caused by an aging
was denied by FERC on March 31,               risks of the project were too great to             as a way to deal with the growing need             electrical grid downstate. NYRI also said
leading directly to the withdrawal of the     continue,” said Singer.                            for power downstate by using sources of            local, upstate residents would profit from
project by the company. “As a result of         NYRI was seeking approval from the               energy, including clean and renewable              the line, saying the company expected to
those two provisions in the New York          Public Service Commission to build the             ones, generated upstate. The company said          pay $30 million annually in property taxes
Independent System Operator rules,            power line, stretching from Marcy, Oneida          the project would be beneficial to the state                           See Power on page 25

                                                                                                                                          Rockefeller College of Public Affairs and Policy
   Rockefeller College: A Leader in Public Affairs Education                                                                                        135 Western Ave, Albany, NY 12222
                                                                                                                                             518.442.5244 www.albany.edu/rockefeller




                                                                                     T                     he Rockefeller College of Public Affairs and Policy could not be located
                                                                                                           in a better part of the state. By being in Albany, its students have access
                                                                                                           to all manner of governments—state, local and federal—as well as to the
                                                                                                           lobbying firms, political action groups and non-profit sectors that help to drive
                                                                                                           and carry out public policy.
                                                                                                               The hallmark of the College’s undergraduate, graduate programs and
                                                                                                           professional development certificates is the quality of faculty, many of whom
                                                                                                           have done extensive work in the fields they teach. How better to learn about
                                                                                                           environmental politics, national security policy or the NYS budget process
                                                                                                           than to hear from someone who has been there.
                                                                                                               The college also stands out in the number of graduate and undergraduate
                                                                                                           students who have internships and the access those internships provide. The
                                                                                                           college maintains a network of government and private organizations that
                                                                                                           know the quality of Rockefeller’s students and welcome them as interns.
                                                                                                               Undergraduate students in the Department of Political Science receive a
                                                                                                           wide breadth of exposure in the field through freshmen introductory lectures
                                                                                                           by some of the best, combined with in depth study in a chosen area.
                                                                                                               A flexible Honors Program gives qualified students an opportunity to do
                                                                                                           research projects, some in conjunction with faculty. One popular program is
                                                                                                           the Washington Semester Program. Here students travel to Washington D.C.
                                                                                                           to study with a faculty member who is located in Washington and to work
HIGHER EDUCATION




                                                                                                           four days a week at an internship, perhaps with a member of congress or
                                                                                                           with one of the nation’s political parties.
                                                                                                               Undergraduate students study on the State University at Albany’s main
                                                                                                           campus and enjoy all the benefits of this campus’s academic and social life.
                                                                                                           Many of them go on to law school, to teach history or to continue their studies
                                                                                                           either in Political Science or in Public Administration.
                                                                                                               Graduate courses at Rockefeller College’s Department of Public Administration
                                                                                                           and Policy are held at the University’s downtown campus on Western Avenue.
                   “For those seeking careers in                                                           Graduate students must complete an internship, which is generally a paid position.
                                                                                                           One of the degrees offered, a two-year Masters in Public Administration, is an
                   government or public service, the                                                       accredited degree ranked 14th in the nation. In addition, the certificate program

                   experience at Rockefeller College is                                                    benefits professionals seeking
                                                                                                           selective study or mid-career
                   unparallel in its depth and its access                                                  development in specific subjects.
                                                                                                               Most classes in the certificate
                   to real-world decision makers.”                                                         program are offered in the
                                                                                                           evening and may be used as
                                                                                                           a stepping-stone to a master’s
                                                                                                           degree.
Page 12                                                                                                                                   The Legislative Gazette          April 13, 2009




Commish doses out info on health reforms
By KATRINA KIELTYKA                                           Paterson’s office, $19.4 million was included in the                At the Livingston County Health Department in Mount
Gazette staff writer                                          2009-2010 budget, to be shared by 51 health care centers          Morris, Daines was scheduled to discuss collaborative


A
         t the start of National Public Health Week,          around the state, to “support new sites and service areas,        local health planning with members of the Genesee Valley
         April 6-12, state Health Commissioner Richard        to increase services at existing sites and to provide             Health Partnership Board, a group of public health care
         F. Daines embarked on an eight-county trip           supplemental payments for the increase in uninsured               and business leaders dedicated to making Livingston
around the state to speak about health care reforms in the    patients seeking care.” Also, a $4.5 million program              County “the healthiest county in the state.” He was also
recently passed budget and highlight the work of local                               was established, the Medical               expected to address collaborative planning in Watertown
public health agencies.                                                              Home Demonstration Project, to             with the Jefferson County Public Health Network.
  The tour was scheduled to make stops in Tompkins,                                  provide financial incentives for             In Steuben, Chemung and Onondaga counties, Daines
Ontario, Livingston, Steuben, Chemung, Onondaga,                                     upstate health care providers to           was scheduled to focus on childhood obesity prevention
Jefferson and Oswego counties, and called attention to                               offer more office-based services at        by discussing different community programs and
a variety of health-related issues at several locations                              more convenient times.                     approaches to combating the obesity epidemic.
each day.                                                                              According to the Health                    Daines gave the keynote address at the New York State
  In a press release from the Health Department, Daines                              Department, during his first stop in       Association for Rural Health’s forum and, according
said, “National Public Health Week is a good time                                    Ithaca, Tompkins County, Daines            to Fred Heigal, vice president of the Health Care
to recognize the work being done by public health                                    was scheduled to participate in a          Association of New York State and board member of the
                                                                      Daines
workers but also to refocus those efforts to address                                 demonstration of research done at          New York State Association for Rural Health, was very
special challenges to the public’s health during difficult    Cornell University, present a Public Health Excellence            well received by the participants.
economic times.”                                              Award to tobacco control groups, congratulate OB-GYN                “He related very well with the audience,” Heigal said.
  Those challenges, Daines said, include difficulties         Associates of Ithaca for recently being awarded a state           In addition to understanding issues facing rural health
“maintaining health insurance, finding safe houses and        grant and review the Cayuga Medical Center’s stroke               care providers, Heigal said the commissioner was “so
obtaining affordable, healthy foods.” Reforms in the          prevention and treatment program.                                 sincere and so genuine.” When asked if participants were
budget, he said, “expand eligibility for public health          In Ontario County, Daines attended the New York State           given a sense upstate health care would be improved,
insurance, increase funding to food pantries, increase        Association for Rural Health’s Spring Quality, Access             Heigal answered with a resounding “yes,” noting many
support for lead abatement in older housing and support       and Prevention Forum, where the focus was on access               in the audience were especially interested to see how
community obesity prevention” as ways of addressing           to preventive health care, local health care planning and         the Medical Home Demonstration project — currently
some of the challenges the fiscal crisis imposes.             initiatives to address health care workforce needs in             available only in Clinton, Franklin, Essex and Warren
  According to a press release from Gov. David A.             rural areas included in the new budget measures.                  Counties — would turn out.

  Reality is...                                              CUT THE EXCESS ADMINISTRATORS,
  •   New York State prisons are currently operating at
      104% capacity.                                                NOT THE SECURITY.
  •   There are approximately 2,000 less correction
      officers than there were in 1999.                          A safe work environment is not a
                                                                                                                                      To advertise in
                                                                                                                                  The Legislative Gazette
  •   30,000 inmates in New York are never locked in —
      ever.
                                                                      privilege, but a right!
  •   Expensive & unnecessary management exist at
      administrative levels, not security.
  •   Less security leads to dangerous work conditions.                                                                          Please call (518)473-9739
  Fact is...
  Correction officers work on the front lines and in one of
     the most dangerous and demanding professions.




          A VERY SPECIAL
          MOTHER’S DAY
          FAMILY WEEKEND
          What A Treat For Mom!
          From Friday, May 8th through Sunday, May 10th, treat
          Mom and the entire family to a very special Mother’s Day
          Weekend celebration. Along with our luxurious accommo-                          SPECIAL MOTHER’S DAY FAMILY WEEKEND DAILY RATES:
          dations, enjoy breakfast and dinner for each guest and a                                 Single MAP $295.00 • Double MAP $355.00
          special gift for Mom. Also, while you are enjoying your                 Children (12-18) $75.00 • Children (5-11) $60.00 • Children 4 & under Free
          Mother’s Day Family Weekend at The Otesaga, we hope                             Rates are subject to tax and service charge. Additional nights
          you will make plans to visit historic Cooperstown’s Farmers’                        are available at special rates. No other discounts apply.
          Museum, Fenimore Art Museum and the National
          Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum.                                      Your Mother’s Day Family Weekend includes:
                                                                                 • Traditional Guest Room (upgrade available at an additional charge)
          Space is limited.                                                      • Breakfast & Dinner for Each Guest
          Make your reservations soon!                                           • Special Welcome Gift for Mom
          For more information and to make reservations,                         • Chocolate-Covered Strawberries in
          call our Reservation Office at (800) 348-6222,                           Your Room Upon Arrival
          (607) 547-9931 or e-mail Reservation1@Otesaga.com.                     • Free Glass of Wine with Dinner for Mom
                                                                                 • Live Music & Dancing Friday & Saturday Evening

                                                                  I n A m e r i c a ’s M o s t P e r f e c t Vi l l a g e ®
                                        T HE O TESAGA R ESORT   H OTEL 60 L AKE S TREET, C OOPERSTOWN , NY 13326 •            WWW.O TESAGA . COM
The Legislative Gazette      April 13, 2009                                                                                                                                          Page 13




Upstate senators use state-splitting
bill to draw attention to grievances
By KATRINA KIELTYKA
Gazette staff writer


E
         ven though being stuck in traffic
         in Manhattan can make New
         York City seem like a different
world than upstate New York, where
fields sandwich vast stretches of empty
road, the two regions are part of the
same state — but should they be? That’s
the question five upstate senators want
to pose to New Yorkers.
  Sens.      Joseph
Robach             of
Greece, Michael
Ranzenhofer of
Amherst,       Dale
Volker of Depew,
William Larkin
of Cornwall and
James       Seward
of Milford, all
Republican, say              Robach
for years, upstate
policies have been determined by
downstate politicians who are out of touch
with the needs of the northern region
of the state. Their recently introduced
legislation (S.3526) would address
this issue by calling for a nonbinding
referendum asking New Yorkers at
election time whether they would support
splitting New York into two states.         … I don’t think we would do that if we
  Ranzenhofer said there are several        [upstaters] were a standalone state.”
goals of the bill. To actually split the       When asked how upstate would make
state, he says, is a long-term goal.        up for the money it receives from Wall
“A more immediate [goal] is to draw         Street if the state were split, Robach
attention to the need that we have two      said upstate could cut spending by
very diverse populations,” he said.         determining its own policies, “from
“The state is being dominated by New        public safety policy, how we protect
York City interests. It’s very hurtful to   green space, how we tax, spend … and
Western New York.”                          educate our kids.” Robach also said the
  An example of the pain being inflicted    new state could create its own economic
upon Western New Yorkers can be seen        development projects.
in the budget, he says, in which the           However, the bill seems unlikely to see
STAR property tax rebate program was        support from Senate Majority Leader
slashed. “That was a killer,” Ranzenhofer   Malcolm A. Smith, D-St. Albans. His
said. “It’s one of the most obvious         spokesman, Austin Schafran, said,
examples of how New York City doesn’t       “Particularly during these difficult
understand the                                                      economic times,


                          “ The state by being
rest of the state’s                                                 where no region
concerns.”                             is                           of the state is
  STAR,         the                                                 immune to the
School         Tax        dominated        New                      harsh reality of


                                               ”
                                                                    the worst fiscal
Relief Program,
gave qualifying           York City interests.                      crisis in decades,
homeowners                                                          the last thing we
a property tax            — Sen. Michael Ranzenhofer want to do is
rebate and a                                                        divide the state
partial property tax exemption from school  with politically motivated and ignorant
taxes. The Basic STAR Program exempted      rhetoric.” He added, “To get New York
homeowners of the first $30,000 of the full back on track, we must work together as
value of their home from school taxes.      one New York.”
Despite attempts by Ranzenhofer to keep        Additionally, Unshackle Upstate, an                                                                                                AP photos
the program intact, the STAR rebate was     organization, according to its Web site,      A busy street in Manhattan, below, and an upstate farm illustrate the diversity of New York. Five
                                                                                          state senators are asking colleagues to allow voters to decide whether New York should be split into
eliminated in the budget.                   with a mission “to achieve reforms in
                                                                                          two separate states. They are angry about the final budget and say there needs to be discussion
  The result, Ranzehofer said in a press    Albany that make upstate a stronger           about better representation for upstaters in the Legislature.
release, is that families will lose money   place to do business,” is also wary of
“in much needed property tax relief”        the legislation.                              Constitution, legislation and laws.”                 since downstate depends heavily on
upstate. “The benefits [of the program]        “We’ve always advocated for reforms          Sampson said, “We’d rather seek the                upstate resources, but he doesn’t “think
received in the city may be very small,”    that have a statewide impact, and we hope     reforms that would virtually unshackle               it would be a bad one for [upstate].”
he said, “but the benefit to homeowners     we can get those through,” said Unshackle     us from the Legislature.”                               Ultimately, however, Robach says
throughout the state is tremendous.”        Upstate Executive Director Brian Sampson.       Robert Ward, deputy director of the                the legislation is about the voters. “At
  Robach, who introduced the legislation,   “If we can’t get them through, then we’ll     Rockefeller Institute of Government,                 the federal level with a new president,
also said the final budget shows little     look at upstate-only type reform.”            said, “I think the big question is what              people are talking about change; this
concern for other upstate issues. “We’re       As far as actually splitting, however,     is the chance Congress would approve                 would be certainly provide change,” he
coming off a budget made in secret by       Sampson said, “There are far too many         this?” He said, “It seems very unlikely              said. “But let the people decide.
three Democrats, all from New York          little aspects of it that would make it       — you would be giving the current New                   Even if the bill were to pass both houses
City, which not only cuts services from     nearly impossible to do.” For example,        York four [U.S.] senators instead of two,            of the Legislature and be signed into
upstate New York, but raises SUNY           he said, “You have to look at the fact        that’s just one issue.”                              law by the governor, it would be up to
[tuition] and not CUNY, and swept           that you’d have to go to the federal            When asked if he saw any negatives                 the leaders of each county to determine
money almost entirely into the General      government and ask for a new Senate           resulting from the split, Ranzenhofer                whether they would want to place the
Fund,” Robach said. “And on top of          seat.” Sampson also noted the state’s         said simply, “No, not one.”                          nonbinding referendum on the ballot.
that,” he added, “new fees were added       laws and finances are intertwined and           Robach acknowledged an “arrangement                   The bill was referred to the Senate
on gas, electric, energy, health care       to split the state “you’d literally have to   would have to be worked out” between                 Elections Committee on March 23. There
insurance policies, wine, beer, water       look at the entire package of the state’s     the two states in terms of energy use,               is no same-as bill in the Assembly.
Page 14                                                                                                        SPECIAL REPORT                                  The Legislative Gazette      April 13, 2009




                                                             The Legislative Gazette Presents a Special Section Highlighting:




                                                                                                     Prepared by Deborah Moore
                                                                                                  Special to The Legislative Gazette
                                                                                                 Published by The Legislative Gazette
                                                                                                   P.O. Box 7329 Albany, NY 12224
                                                                                             518.474.2427 www.legislativegazette.com




                                        New York Oncology Hematology                                                                                                        518.489.0044
                                                                                                                                                                 www.newyorkoncology.com
  NEW YORK’S CANCER TREATMENT CENTERS




                                           N
                                                         ew York Oncology Hematology (NYOH) is the Capital
                                                          Region’s leading provider of community-based cancer
                                                          care services. With nearly 400 employees and nine, easy-
                                                          access locations, NYOH is renowned as the cancer care
                                                         provider of choice for thousands of local area residents.
                                                        The NYOH network includes five, high-tech cancer treatment
                                        centers located in Albany, Amsterdam, Hudson, Latham and Rexford and
                                        four medical oncology offices in Gloversville, Saratoga, and Troy and, at the
                                        Albany Medical Center. Its team of cancer care professionals includes 40
                                        board certified physicians who specialize in hematology, medical oncology
                                        and radiation oncology and more than 350 oncology certified nurses,
                                        laboratory technologists, radiation therapists and support personnel.
                                          Over the course of its 30 year history, NYOH has developed into a cohesive
                                        network that provides a comprehensive array of cancer care services
                                        including many of the region’s most advanced diagnostic and treatment
                                        modalities. Among them, PET/CT – advanced imaging technology; High
                                        Dose Rate (HDR) Brachytherapy – often used in the treatment of breast and
                                        gynecological cancers; Intensity Modulated Radiation Therapy (IMRT) and
                                        Image Guided Radiation Therapy (IGRT) – which allow for highly precise
                                        planning and delivery of radiation treatments; and outpatient Stem Cell
                                        Transplants which may be used in the treatment of multiple myeloma,
                                        non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma and Hodgkin’s Disease.
                                          During the past decade, NYOH has played a pivotal role in the FDA approval
                                        process of 24 new anti-cancer drugs. Through its affiliation with US Oncology,
                                        the nation’s foremost cancer treatment and research network, NYOH
                                        collaborates with many of the country’s most prestigious pharmaceutical
                                        and biotechnology companies in such areas as chemotherapy, radiation
                                        therapy, immunotherapy and stem cell transplantation and participates in                  New York Oncology Hematology also participates in National Cancer
                                        a wide range of Phase I, II and III clinical trials including those that focus on       Institute (NCI) sponsored research through the Eastern Cooperative
                                        solid tumors, hematologic malignancies and supportive care.                             Oncology Group (ECOG), the National Surgical Adjuvant Breast and Bowel
                                                                                                                                Project (NSABP), and the Radiation Therapy Oncology Group (RTOG).

                                        New York Oncology Hematology:
                                                                                                                                  The physicians and staff of New York Oncology
                                                                                                                                Hematology have a longstanding reputation for

                                         Regional Leader in Community
                                                                                                                                excellence and are committed to reducing the
                                                                                                                                incidence of cancer, achieving more cures and

                                              Based Cancer Care
                                                                                                                                helping patients and their families live well,
                                                                                                                                with cancer.
The Legislative Gazette                           April 13, 2009                                 SPECIAL REPORT                                                               Page 15



                                                                                                                                                  522 First Avenue, Smilow 1201
                                                                                                                                                             New York, NY 10016
                                                                                                                                                            Phone: 212-263-3276
                                                                                                                                                           http://ci.med.nyu.edu




                                         T
                                                     he NYU Cancer Institute is a leader in the care
                                                     of patients with cancer. Using a multi-faceted
                                                     approach to cancer care, the Institute strives
                                                     to achieve its mission: to discover the origins
                                                     of human cancer and to use that knowledge to
                                         eradicate the personal and societal burden of cancer in our
                                         community, the nation, and the world.
                                           As a center for translational medicine, NYU Cancer
                                         Institute’s scientists, researchers and clinicians all share a
                                         common goal of understanding how cancer develops at the
                                         molecular level, and harnessing that knowledge to reduce
                                         the risk of cancer through providing the newest treatment
                                         options for patients. Members of the Institute are constantly
                                         seeking to create opportunities for collaboration whether
                                         with others in the Institute, elsewhere in the New York
                                         University network or at outside institutions.
                                           “As one of just 63 NCI designated centers in the country,
                                         we have an outstanding scientific base and research labs
                                         working to unravel the origins of cancer,” says Dr. William
                                         Carroll, Director of the NYU Cancer Institute. “This research is
                                         linked to outstanding clinical programs that bring a number
                                         of new patients to new clinical protocols. From break-through
                                         science in the lab to the highly personalized care we provide,
                                         patient focus is one of our core commitments.”
                                           The Institute is part of the NYU Langone Medical Center,
                                         a world-renowned academic medical center located on the
                                         eastside of Manhattan. Taking an integrated, team approach
                                         to cancer care, NYU Cancer Institute’s experts are brought
                                                                                                                  nurturing, supportive environment in which the Institute’s
                                         together from a variety of disciplines to create Disease
                                                                                                                  multidisciplinary treatment team can communicate and
                                         Management Groups. These groups enable the Institute
                                                                                                                  collaborate to create the best outcomes for each patient.
                                         to provide a full continuum of personalized care, from the
                                                                                                                    There are special challenges associated with being an
                                         moment a patient walks into the state-of-the-art NYU
   NEW YORK’S CANCER TREATMENT CENTERS




                                                                                                                  urban medical facility according to Dr. Carroll. “In the midst
                                         Clinical Cancer Center. This centralized facility provides a
                                                                                                                  of New York City, one of the fundamental problems is that
                                                                                                                  there are great therapies, yet people can’t always get to them.
                                                                                                                  There is a deep disparity in access to cutting edge therapy.”
                                                                                                                  The problems are as basic as lack of health insurance and
                                                                                                                  as nuanced as cultural and educational differences in the
                                                                                                                  Institute’s diverse patient population. Patients come from all
                                                                                                                  cultural backgrounds, from a variety of socioeconomic levels
                                                                                                                  and from many different countries.
                                                                                                                    To address these disparities, the NYU Cancer Institute
                                                                                                                  reaches out to communities and works with them to bring
                                                                                                                  prevention, screening and cancer education to their diverse
                                                                                                                  populations. “It is important that NYU Cancer Institute
                                                                                                                  continues to deliver top-flight care in the community” says
                                                                                                                  Dr. Carroll. “We work to ensure that patients who are under
                                                                                                                  emotional and sometimes financial stress from the fact of
                                                                                                                  their illness do not have to add travel and being away from
                                                                                                                  their families to their list of problems.”
                                                                                                                    The NYU Cancer Institute is ultimately forward thinking.
                                                                                                                  While it offers the most up-to-date care for all cancers,
                                                                                                                  it is accelerating the pace of research and clinical care for
                                                                                                                  all types of human cancer. It has recently launched special
                                                                                                                  emphasis programs in cancer healthcare disparities,
                                                                                                                  molecular-targeted therapy, lung cancer, immunotherapy,
                                                                                                                  and melanoma, to name a few. It is the programmatic
                                                                                                                  approach across disease areas inclusive of stunning science,
                                                                                                                  cultural diversity, and patient centered care which sets NYU
                                                                                                                  Cancer Institute apart and firmly establishes it as one of the
                                                                                                                  countries premier cancer care facilities.
Page 16                                                                                             SPECIAL REPORT                                  The Legislative Gazette      April 13, 2009


                                                                                                                                                   713 Troy Schenectady Road Suite 124
                                        IGRT - Image Guided Radiation Therapy                                                                                        Latham, NY 12110
                                                                                                                                                          518.213.0305 www.IGRT.com




                                         C
                                                         ancer cure with organ and function preservation.
                                                           To achieve these goals, IGRT- (Image Guided
                                                            Radiation) Therapy in Latham, NY utilizes CT
                                                            guidance, the most cutting-edge technology
                                                           available today.
                                                          The IGRT suite is the first clinical site in the
                                                       country to use Varian Medical’s On-Board Imager
                                        to perform a daily CT scan of the area to be treated. Under the
                                        expert direction of Dr. Arun Puranik, the facility houses a state-of-
                                        the-art Image Guided Radiation Therapy delivery system, capable
                                        of administering ultra-precise doses of radiation to previously
                                        unreachable tumors. This next generation treatment technology
                                        represents a major step in the fight against cancer.
                                          At IGRT, you will find not just cutting edge technology; you
                                        will find a team of medical professionals who, because they
                                        were among the very first few to utilize this game-changing
                                        technology, have the most experience in getting the best from it.
                                        Only a handful of doctors around the world have equal experience             healthy tissue is also unnecessarily exposed – leading to a decrease
                                        in using Cone Beam CT technology.                                            in the amount of radiation that is able to safety be delivered and
                                          “Others may now have the machine,” said Dr. Arun Puranik,                  complications that can be avoided with image guidance.
                                        director of IGRT, “but we make it work most effectively through                Patients at IGRT receive a specialized CT scan just before each
                                        our experience. Patients may receive better care here than they              daily radiation treatment. This CT scan creates three-dimensional
                                        do in Boston or at Sloan-Kettering (in New York City) because of             images that pinpoint the exact size, location and coordinates of
                                        our personal touch. We have the skills, learned through actual               the tumor. With IGRT, two robotically controlled “arms” capture
                                        patient experience, to understand how it works best for a variety            CT on a daily basis, pinpointing the position of the cancer just
                                        of cancers. In fact, Varian Medical Systems has designated our               prior to treatment.
                                        facility as a show site for prospective customers.”                            The radiation treatment is then directed precisely at the tumor,
                                                                                                                     sparing healthy tissue. Because the physician is sure the tumor,
                                                                                                                     and not the healthy tissue is being targeted, the radiation dosage
                                                                                                                     can be stronger. This increased precision allows for higher doses of
                                                                                                                     radiation – ultimately leading to higher cure rates.
                                                                                                                       Even with the added time for the CT scan, an average treatment
                                                                                                                     takes about 12 minutes.
                                                                                                                       “We’re not shooting in the dark anymore,” said Dr. Puranik.
                                                                                                                     “Being able to target the radiation dose means less side effects,
                                                                                                                     which is especially important in prostate cancers, head and neck
                                                                                                                     cancer, abdominal tumors and pelvic cancers.”
  NEW YORK’S CANCER TREATMENT CENTERS




                                               “It is truly revolutionary
                                         technology, but equally important
                                           is our experience in using this                                             For example, in the treatment of prostate cancer, radiation
                                                                                                                     can be focused to minimize exposure to the rectum and bladder.
                                        technology. This achieves the best                                           Additionally, the radiation dose to the penile bulb can be minimized
                                             outcomes for our patients.”                                             for potency preservation.
                                                                                                                       Because each patient’s case presents unique challenges and
                                                                                                                     requires individualized attention, patients do best when they
                                                         — Dr. Arun Puranik                                          consult an expert team of physicians who specialize in their type
                                                                                                                     of cancer to insure an optimal outcome and determine which
                                           We are lucky to have a world-class facility right here in the             treatment plan is best. This is where IGRT’s experience is most
                                        Capital Region and we have Dr. Puranik’s foresight to thank.                 valuable to patients.
                                           Dr. Puranik, the longest serving full-time radiation oncologist             Because of his early adoption of the technology and his
                                        in the Capital Region, was a faculty member at Albany Medical                experience with it, Dr. Puranik is recognized as an expert in this
                                        College between 1985-1990. He worked with local hospitals in                 technology and is invited to speak on the subject throughout the
                                        the field of cancer treatment and closely follow the development              country.
                                        of this technology because he knew it would be revolutionary. He               The facility is conveniently located just off the Northway (I-87)
                                        also knew that hospital bureaucracy, because of its nature, would            Exit 6 in Latham.
                                        move slowly to acquire the equipment. He contacted Varian
                                        Medical, maker of the equipment and, in 2005, opened IGRT as
                                        one of the world’s first cancer centers to offer this state-of-the-art
                                        cancer treatment.
                                           The use of CT technology to precisely direct radiation at a tumor
                                        is one of the major breakthroughs in cancer science. Tumors do not
                                        remain stationary in the body, Dr. Puranik explained; they move
                                        around from day to day. Oncologists previously had to deliver
                                        radiation to a site in the body large enough to cover the tumor’s
                                        anticipated movements to be sure of attacking the tumor. While
                                        this technique does work to deliver radiation to the tumor, a lot of
The Legislative Gazette     April 13, 2009                                                                                                                                                              Page 17



Funding will
keep flood
monitors
operating
By ANNA HELHOSKI
Gazette staff writer


T
        he U.S. Geological Survey
        announced last Wednesday a
        group of government agencies,
including the USGS, has agreed to
provide the funding necessary to keep
open 17 flood-gauge stations in the state
slated for closure.
  An agreement was reached among
USGS, the New York City Department
of Environmental Protection, the New
                                                                                                                                                                                                        AP photo
York State Department of Environmental        Motorists likely paid more than they should have for fuel at several service stations along the state Thruway, according to a recent audit by the state comptroller.
Conservation, the Susquehanna Flood
Forecast and Warning System and the
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to keep
open sites used by the National Weather
Service to provide flood forecasts and
                                              Thruway stations sold overpriced gas, audit shows
warnings. The gauges at these sites           By ANAND BALASAR                                         both under contract with the Thruway                     it “more clear to people what gas
measure the flow, volume and height of        Gazette staff writer                                     Authority to sell fuel at the Thruway’s                  costs,” according to Jennifer Freeman,


                                              M
rivers in the state.                                      otorists gassing up their                    27 travel plazas.                                        spokesperson for the comptroller. She
  “We have kept open the lines of                         vehicles at three rest stations                The three gas stations found                           said the authority now posts gas prices
communication throughout this process                     along the New York State                     overcharging for fuel were the Sunoco                    for every service plaza on its Web site.
and have worked cooperatively with            Thruway should have been charged                         in Dewitt, with a 2-cent overcharge per                    The authority was also required to
elected officials, emergency managers         less for fuel, according to the state                    gallon, Sunoco in Sloatsburg, with a                     file a Corrective Action Plan with the
and state, federal and local partners to      Comptroller’s Office.                                    26-cent overcharge, and Mobile in New                    Comptroller’s Office.
ensure that funding for the most essential       Under their contract with the Thruway                 Baltimore with a 10-cent overcharge.                       The Thruway Authority cannot fine
gauges is continued,” said Department         Authority, gasoline station operators                      The audit results showed the three                     the fuel companies when it detects
of Environmental Protection Deputy            must set their prices either two cents                   stations overcharged for gas on as many                  any pricing violations, it can only
Commissioner Paul Rush in a prepared          higher than the average of surrounding                   as 44 days of the 123-day audit period.                  instruct them — in this case Sunoco or
statement.                                    gas stations or one cent lower than the                  Overall, according to the auditors’ report,              Lehigh — to lower the price. DiNapoli
  Eight of the gauges will be federally       highest price at any of the surveyed                     motorists were overcharged $2,870 for                    recommended the Thruway Authority
funded, while nine others will be funded by   stations — whichever amount is lower.                    93,177 gallons of fuel, an amount described              amend its contracts to include financial
the partnership of agencies in conjunction      State auditors, who looked at eight                    in the audit as being not significant.                   penalties for repeated and significant
with the federal government.                  stations between May 1 and Aug. 31,                        The Thruway Authority’s response to                    pricing violations.
  Earlier this year, the DEP announced        2008, found overcharges ranging from 2                   the draft audit states its fuel sales during               According to the Thruway Authority’s
its plans to close approximately 22 of        to 26 cents per gallon.                                  the period of the audit totaled over $35                 response to the audit, the “authority will
the 100 flood gauge and stream flow             “The Thruway is already hiking                         million dollars, “which reflects that the                attempt to amend the contract to include
monitoring stations, many of which are        the tolls. Drivers shouldn’t be nickel                   total sales amount charged to customers                  liquidated damages for repeated and
located in New York City’s watershed,         and dimed at the pump too,” said                         was 99.99 percent accurate.”                             significant violations.”
north of the city. Funding is still being     Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli in a                           “The amounts were small, but it can                      To ensure the gas stations are charging
sought to keep more gauges operational.       prepared statement.                                      make a big difference to businesses and                  prices consistent with their contracts,
  The DEP had proposed closing the              The Comptroller’s Office released a                    drivers who are frequent travelers on the                Thruway station operators must conduct
stations as a cost-saving measure, but        report April 3 containing the results of                 Thruway,” said DiNapoli.                                 a weekly survey of surrounding gas
Sen. John Bonacic, R-Mount Hope,              the audit along with 12 recommendations                    One of the immediate responses                         stations. The surveyed prices are to be
announced he would fight to keep              for the Thruway Authority to strengthen                  from the Thruway Authority to the                        approved by the Thruway Authority
them open to make his constituents less       its oversight of gas prices at Thruway                   comptroller’s recommendations was the                    before the individual stations implement
vulnerable to property damage and deaths      travel plazas.                                           posting of gas prices online at www.                     any price changes. The comptroller’s
from flooding. In a meeting last month          The audited stations were three Sunoco                 nysthruway.gov/travelplazas/gasprices/                   audit found the Authority sometimes
with the DEP, Rush said he intended           and five Lehigh stations. Lehigh, which                  index.html.                                              approved gas prices that were higher
                     See Flood on page 23     sells Mobile gasoline, and Sunoco are                      The Thruway Authority must make                                                See Gas on page 21




Lawmakers want to limit employers’ use of credit checks
By GREGORY JONES                              check job applicants’ credit scores. This               and minorities. The bill would prohibit                  running credit checks and background
Gazette staff writer                          figure has risen from 36 percent back in                the use of credit scores as hiring criteria              checks,” Minnick said. “We consider this


I
    n response to the troubled economy        2004. According to the bill justification,              for employers, unless the information is                 a duplication of what is already covered
    and a growing unemployment rate           employers check credit histories prior to               directly related to the position.                        in another law.”
    that is showing no signs of slowing,      offering a job or promotion to find out if                “The bill would restrict employers to                    Although Benjamin acknowledged
legislation has been proposed to prevent      an individual’s debt load is too high for               performing credit checks only when it                    the federal law, he said it isn’t doing
employers from using credit checks to         the salary they are being offered.                      is relevant to the job being sought,”                    enough. “I feel even more encouraged …
evaluate most job applicants.                                        The legislation                                        Benjamin said. “It is              several states have also proposed similar
  Assemblyman Michael Benjamin,                                    (A.2067/S.2837)                                          unfair of employers                legislation, so I think more needs to be
D-Bronx, and Sen. Jeffrey Klein,                                   was first introduced                                     to     turn     away               done than the federal law is covering,”
D-Bronx, have sponsored legislation in                             in 2005 and has                                          qualified applicants               he said.
hopes of helping the unemployed people                             been reintroduced                                        based on poor credit                 There are some jobs that require credit
with poor credit histories land jobs.                              in 2006 and 2007.                                        history if the check               checks, such as positions involving
  “These credit checks are having                                  The legislation was                                      isn’t relevant to the              access to substantial amounts of money
negative effects, and the tough economy                            referred to the Senate                                   job.”                              and those where the employee would be
and an unemployment rate of nearly                   Klein         Investigations                           Benjamin          Thomas Minnick,                  investigating possible violations of law
10 percent isn’t helping,” Benjamin                              and      Government                                     vice president of human               or state agency rules.
said. “When this information is used          Operations Committee this year on March                 resources for the Business Council of                      Benjamin said the U.S. Transportation
against somebody it can be considered         4 and to the Assembly Government                        New York, said this proposed legislation                 Security Administration and banks are
discriminatory.”                              Operations Committee on Jan. 15.                        is redundant.                                            examples of agencies and institutions
  The bill cites a study by the Society         According to Benjamin and Klein,                        “The Business Council is opposed                       that would require a credit check so
for Human Resource Management and             credit checks are too often unrelated                   to this legislation only because there                   employers know whether an applicant
security consultant company Kroll, that       to job duties and in some cases can                     is a federal Fair Credit Reporting Act                   might be more susceptible to bribes or
says about 43 percent of U.S. employers       serve to discriminate against women                     that already states the restrictions for                                        See Credit on page 23
Page 18                                                                                                                                 The Legislative Gazette            April 13, 2009



Pro-life advocates take pre-emptive stances against
Reproductive Health and Privacy Protection Act
By KATRINA KIELTYKA                             While the term is not recognized by
Gazette staff writer                         the American Psychiatric Association or


P
       ro-life New Yorkers are pledging      the American Psychological Association,
       to keep their movement going          Igle-Brown says she suffered from
       strong in the face of controversial   post-abortion syndrome, a term pro-
legislation that has a chance of passing     life advocates often use to describe the
in the Legislature this session.             feelings of trauma after having had an
  The Reproductive Health and                abortion.
Privacy Protection Act would continue           Now a religious, pro-life mother of
protecting a woman’s right to have an        seven and a post-abortion counselor,
abortion in New York should the federal      Igle-Brown said she is continually
government overturn Roe v. Wade and          disturbed by the age of the young women
allow individual states to determine the     coming into the pregnancy center where
legality of the procedure. The bill has      she works.
been opposed by pro-life groups and             According to the Alan Guttmacher
advocated for by pro-choice groups           institute, a nonprofit organization that
since it was introduced last year in the     provides information about sexual and
Senate.                                      reproductive health, currently there are
  It has not yet been introduced in the      no laws in New York that require minors
Legislature this session, but is expected    to notify or get consent from their parents
to be before June.                           to get an abortion.
  After starting with a prayer, Barbara         Igle-Brown spoke of the need for
Meara, chair of the New York State Right     such laws, saying the girls she sees are
to Life Committee, at the event evoked       “gum-popping, double dutch-jumping
the Declaration of Independence, saying      teens” who should “just continue to
among the unalienable rights listed in       jump double dutch and pop the gum and
the Declaration, “the right to life was      enjoy life.”
placed first, for it is the primary right.      “What’s going to happen to these little
Without the right to life, we have no        girls if there’s no one in their corner to
                                                                                                                                                          Gazette photo by Edward J. Carr
other rights.”                               fight for them and keep them little girls?”   Sen. William J. Larkin, R-New Windsor, and pro-life advocates from the New York State Right to
  Meara reminded the audience their          Igle-Brown asked, before resolving            Life Committee speak out against the Reproductive Health and Privacy Protection Act. The Act
principles are sometimes hard for            to do so herself. When asked, “How            would continue to allow a woman to have an abortion in New York state even if Roe v. Wade is
legislators to understand. “We come not                                                    overturned at the federal level.
                                             about you?” the audience applauded
to promote our own welfare or our own        enthusiastically.                             audience, “We can’t let this bill see             law, “It does not in any way mean
desires, but to speak for the defenseless       Christina Fadden Fitch, who left her       the light of day. They want to overturn           there would be no penalties attached
and innocent among us,” she said,            position as legislative director of the       every possibility in the future that there        for someone who wasn’t certified to
whereas “most people come knocking           New York State Right to Life Committee        will ever be common-sense restrictions            perform abortion [to perform one].”
on [legislators’] doors when they have       to run for an Assembly seat in the            on abortion in New York. They want to             She added, “Anyone operating outside
a cause of something they need for their     119th District in 2008, said she was          overturn the criminal penalties that exist        the scope of their practice would be
community or themselves.” She added,         touched by Igle-Brown’s story. “It’s          for unlawful abortions.”                          held legally liable.”
“It makes it hard for them when we           important for us to hear about children         The New York Civil Liberties Union, in            Sherwin also added the NYCLU
come with nothing in mind for ourselves      being lost every day in multiple numbers      a 10-minute film entitled “Another New            has been “getting great feedback” on
but the right to life for all others. They   all around us, and all these secretive        Yorker for the Reproductive Health Act,”          their efforts to mobilize a movement
don’t know quite what to do with us.”        little process plants where women are         argues the legislation would update New           in support of reproductive rights. “We
  Meara also introduced Regina Igle-         going for abortions and hearts are being      York’s laws on abortion since they have           know the majority of New York is
Brown, a registered nurse and post-          damaged every day.”                           not been revised since 1970, when New             pro-choice and do want these rights to
abortion counselor, who talked about            Fadden-Fitch also spoke about running      York legalized abortion. One part of the          be protected,” she said. “And we are
the pain and suffering she said she          for office last fall, saying though her       legislation would seek to move abortion           very optimistic about the bill moving
experienced after having had multiple        pro-life views may have affected the          from the state’s penal code, where it             forward.”
abortions.                                   outcome of the race, “I’d rather lose         currently resides, into the health code             However, those on the New York State
  Igle-Brown, who had three abortions        an election than lose my values.” She         because abortion is a health issue, not           Right to Life Committee argue there’s a
before becoming pro-life, said she           also encouraged the audience to not           a criminal one, says Executive Director           growing majority of New Yorkers who
experienced substantial pain and suffering   be dissuaded when they are labeled            Donna Lieberman in the film. “Laws                are pro-life, and they will seek to keep
during each of her abortions. After her      extreme. “We’re not extreme, people,”         about the practice of medicine ought not          their movement going. In support of their
first, she said, “I laid there and said      she said. Referring to the Reproductive       be in the Penal Code,” she says.                  work and to commend the audience for
‘something just died.’” During her third,    Health and Privacy Protection Act, she          Galen Sherwin, director of the                  their dedication, Sens. Rubin Diaz Sr.,
she said she experienced unbearable          said, “This bill is what’s extreme.”          NYCLU’s Reproductive Rights Project,              D-Bronx, William Larkin, R-Cornwall
pain that “wasn’t only physical, but            Though it hasn’t been introduced           said although the act would remove                and Dale Volker, R-Depew, stopped by
something more, deeper.”                     yet this session, Fadden-Fitch told the       regulation of abortion from penal                 the event.




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                                                  The Legislative Gazette                   ALBANY, NY
Page 20   The Legislative Gazette   April 13, 2009
The Legislative Gazette       April 13, 2009                                                                                                                                      Page 21


Hopeful
                                                                                                                                              a marriage equality law in New York
                                                   NYC tourist officials woo gays, lesbians                                                   “would provide same-sex couples with
                                                                                                                                              the 1,324 rights and protections that
Continued from page 1                                                                                                                         come with a New York state marriage
                                                   MARCUS FRANKLIN
on same-sex marriage unconstitutional              The Associated Press                                                                       license.” The state’s top leaders, Van


                                                   N
on April 3, joining Connecticut and                         ew York City officials are launching a marketing campaign to attract more         Capelle said, including Gov. David
Massachusetts as the third state to                         gay and lesbian tourists.                                                         A. Paterson and U.S. Sens. Charles
legalize same-sex marriage. Last                              The yearlong effort comes about three months before the 40th anniversary        Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand, already
Tuesday, Vermont became the fourth                 of the Stonewall riots in Manhattan, which many consider the birth of the modern           support passing such legislation.
after its state Legislature overrode a veto        gay rights movement.                                                                         Van Capelle also said a majority
by Gov. James Douglas.                               It also comes as state and city officials grapple with diminishing revenue as a          of New Yorkers support a move for
  Van Capelle said in a statement while            result of the global economic meltdown.                                                    marriage equity. According to an April
the Pride Agenda is “thrilled that Vermont           The Rainbow Pilgrimage campaign will highlight the city’s reputation as a gay-           7 Quinnipiac University poll, 41 percent
—another one of New York’s neighbors               friendly travel destination and tout a visit to New York as a “rite of passage” for        of New York state voters say same-sex
— has passed a marriage equality bill              gays and lesbians.                                                                         couples should be allowed to marry
through the state Legislature” and                                                                                                            legally, while 19 percent say there
“Iowa’s Supreme Court recognized the                                                                                                          should be no legal recognition of a
need to recognize and protect same-sex           Ithaca radio station last week he would        office “does not believe there are            same-sex union. Thirty-three percent
couples and our families,” New York is           like to see the bill voted on by the Senate,   sufficient votes in the Senate to pass the    are for civil unions.
lagging behind in the fight for marriage         Senate Majority Leader Malcolm A.              marriage equality bill,” but the majority       However, for many advocates of
equality.                                        Smith, D-St Albans, said he will not bring     leader “has said it will pass as soon         same-sex marriage, civil unions are
  “We hope that our state Senate in New          the bill to a vote on the Senate floor until   as the votes can be secured, and he is        not satisfactory. Van Capelle said his
York will now look at three of the states that   it has enough votes to pass, according to      committed to continuing that process          organization is working with both houses
surround New York … and realize that we          his spokesman Austin Shafran.                  now.”                                         of the Legislature to garner enough votes
are falling behind,” Van Capelle said.              “Senator Smith has been and continues         Melissa Mansfield, senior assistant         to pass the marriage equity bill this
  Legislation to allow same-sex marriage         to be a supporter of marriage equality, but    press secretary for Assembly Speaker          year. “Despite the prevailing wisdom
in New York was passed by the Assembly           something of this importance demands           Sheldon Silver, D-Manhattan, said Silver      that Albany is hopelessly dysfunctional,
in June 2007 but was never voted on by           more than a symbolic gesture or empty          voted for the marriage equality bill when     we have — time and time again over
the Senate. It would have to be approved         rhetoric,” Shafran said. “It requires the      it passed in the Assembly in June 2007        the years — proved that we can break
again by the Assembly and for the first          type of real action we are working             and supports the legislation still.           through the gridlock and pass legislation
time by the Senate before it could be            toward to secure the votes necessary to          New York currently recognizes same-         providing equality for our community
signed into law this legislative session.        achieve the goal of marriage equality.”        sex marriages performed out of state and      when most people thought it couldn’t be
  Though Gov. David A. Paterson told an             Shafran also said currently, Smith’s        country, but Van Capelle said passing         done,” he said.



Reps
                                                 Great Depression.”                               “The only reason why I thought we           for counties.
                                                   New York has had ownership of lands          might have to do a one-year freeze was          “For the most part the budget did not
                                                 in the Adirondack and Catskill parks for       that at that point we didn’t have federal     shift costs to county property taxpayers,
Continued from page 1                            126 years as well as other lands in the        stimulus money,” said Galef. She said         which has been our main concern for
burdensome in areas of the state, such           state, according to a press release from       once New York received the money the          years, because that has been the tradition
as the Catskills and Adirondacks, where          NYSAC.                                         state was able to free up funds for other     when there is a budget gap, to shift as much
the existing tax base is small because of          Brian Towers, president of the               programs.                                     of the costs as they can to local property
the significant amounts of land the state        Association of Adirondack Towns and              Although the rejection of the governor’s    taxpayers,” said LaVigne. However, he
owns.                                            Villages, also said he was glad the            plan is giving people a reason to rejoice,    said, there are other provisions in the
  Sen. Joseph A. Griffo, R-Rome, who             proposal was dropped.                          there is speculation that the celebration     budget that will increase the cost of doing
represents a district that stretches into          “Obviously this would have had a             may not last a long time.                     business at the county level, such as
the Adirondack Park, said he thinks it’s         devastating effect on lands in the area,”        Griffo said he is positive the issue will   the reforms to the Rockefeller-era drug
outstanding the proposal was dropped             said Towers. “We’re delighted that             resurface again in the future, which is       laws that call for more spending on drug
from the budget.                                 legislative leaders realize the effect this    why he said he wants to see a moratorium      addiction treatment programs.
  “It made no sense to begin with,” said         would have had on the communities.”            placed on land purchases by the state. He       LaVigne said there were also some
Griffo. He said the state has an obligation        Towers said state preserve lands are not     said if the state can’t buy as much land it   issues dropped from the budget that
to contribute where the state owns land.         just a jewel for New Yorkers but for all       won’t need to refuse to pay taxes in areas    would have benefited counties and
“That’s why the governor’s proposal to           Americans.                                     where it already owns property.               that NYSAC will continue to fight for.
cap payments was ridiculous.”                      Assembly Real Property Taxation                Galef also said this issue could come       LaVigne said they include reforms to
  Mark LaVigne, a spokesman for the              Committee Chairwoman Sandy Galef,              up again if the state finds it needs more     preschool special education, which
New York State Association of Counties,          D-Ossining, shared a similar outlook,          money. “Hopefully the economy of New          would have required schools to pay for
said he is also “very pleased” the               saying she thought it was a good proposal      York will be better in a few years so         a share of the program that counties
Legislature turned down this tax cap             to be dropped.                                 proposals like this don’t come forward,”      now pay for. He said NYSAC will also
proposal.                                          Galef said the decision not to include       again, said Galef.                            continue to advocate for a proposal to
  “The communities who would have                a cap on state payments is a “win-win”           LaVigne said if the issue is brought up     require health insurance companies to
been most affected by this cap could least       since it helps alleviate communities’ tax      again the municipalities, counties, towns,    pay some of the cost of providing early
afford the increased taxes that would have       burdens and fosters the protection of the      county supervisors in the Adirondack and      intervention programs that are now paid
covered the gap,” said LaVigne. “The             environment by encouraging preservation        the county legislatures in the Catskills,     for by the state and counties.
state has a long-standing tradition of           of land by the state.                          who are most affected by this, will be          Now that the budget passed, LaVigne
being good stewards of these preserved             Galef had previously suggested a one-        quick to stand in opposition again.           said, NYSAC has turned its attention
lands in our communities. They have              year cap instead of the multi-year freeze        Although counties don’t have to worry       to growing “the economy and helping
upheld their commitment to pay property          proposed by the governor, but said she is      about the proposal this year, LaVigne         counties create and retain jobs they need
taxes on these lands even through the            glad neither was adopted.                      said the budget was hit and miss overall      to weather this current recession.”



Gas
                                                 highest price possible for gas.                of rising gas prices to conduct the same          Add guidelines on price comparison
                                                   The Comptroller’s Office also                amount of surveys during declining gas        surveys to the service area representative
                                                 recommended the Thruway Authority:             prices to reflect the fairest gas price.      manual.
Continued from page 17                                Make inspections more random to                 Update survey lists to reflect the            Update concessions contract to
than the contracts allowed.                      ensure more accurate results.                  current status of gas stations.               include procedures for calculating the
  Another flaw found during the audit                 Ensure approved gas prices comply              Resolve any price discrepancy during     price of 91 octane gas, incorporate
was in the surveying method Thruway              with contract pricing restrictions.            test surveys and take corrective action if    procedures to determine the price of gas
station operators used to acquire their gas             Monitor Sunoco and Lehigh’s             necessary.                                    when surveyed stations have different
prices. According to DiNapoli’s report,          compliance with the survey requirements,            Ensure all test surveys are conducted    prices for cash and credit cards and
Lehigh stations requested additional             note any noncompliance and instruct service    at regional gas stations that Sunoco          establish a set time when changes to gas
surveys during May and June when                 area representatives to validate information   and Lehigh survey to validate their gas       prices must be implemented.
prices were rising, but requested fewer          on surveys submitted by that station.          prices.                                         The Thruway Authority has already
when prices fell later last summer. This               Require station operators who                  Review and correct the prices           implemented a number of the
resulted in Lehigh stations acquiring the        request additional surveys during periods      charged for 89 octane gas.                    comptroller’s recommendations.



Training
                                                   “I could hear what he was telling her,”        Still, “out of the three dispatchers who    background,” Pandich said. “She didn’t
                                                 shift supervisor Jim Pandich said. “He         spent longer durations on the phone, only     give me a lot of information because it
                                                 was just reassuring her that help was on       one had active shooter training,” said        was dark in there.”
Continued from page 8                            the way. He gave her instructions on how       Ballard, the 911 center’s manager. “Even        “We just tried to keep her calm, keep
into the American Civic Association.             to control her bleeding. We’re trained to      though some didn’t have that training, the    them quiet and be there in case they
  Dispatcher Ken Hayes was talking with          help until EMS people can get there.”          job that they did was just unbelievable.”     had any information they could give
DeLucia after she played dead and called           The shooting happened less than two            Pandich was on the phone for more           us,” the 45-year-old Pandich said. “We
911. Though she was badly wounded,               months after a group of Broome County          than two hours with a woman huddling          didn’t know if the person was still in the
she stayed on the line, describing the           emergency dispatchers got training on          with others in a dark closet.                 building or not or what the situation was.
scene and Wong, who killed himself as            how to deal with scenarios involving             “It was a little bit nerve-racking not      We wanted to make sure they weren’t in
police arrived.                                  shootings.                                     knowing what was going on in the              any more danger.”
Page 22                                                                                                                                            The Legislative Gazette            April 13, 2009


Gun
                                                Similar legislation was sponsored by                 owe it to the public and to our law                for others who would be refused under
                                                Schimel last year but failed to pass in              enforcement officers to enact legislation           current law.
                                                the Senate.                                          to ensure that this tool is available here           A Brady background check is a
Continued from page 8                             Sen. Eric Schneiderman, D-Bronx, has               in New York.”                                      requirement meant to ensure felons,
are we going to learn that?” asked King.        sponsored similar legislation in the past              Other legislation New Yorkers                    spousal abusers and people who have
  Assemblywoman Michelle Schimel,               and said he has plans to do the same this            Against Gun Violence supports is an                been deemed mentally ill, are not
D-Great Neck, proposed legislation              year.                                                initiative to have all employees of gun            permitted to purchase weapons. The
that would require every semiautomatic            “Law enforcement officers need as                   dealers undergo a Brady background                 law gets its name from Jim Brady, press
weapon manufacturer in New York to              many tools as possible to solve individual           check, as opposed to just the owner                secretary to President Ronald Reagan.
be equipped with microstamping – a              gun crimes and to prevent the trafficking             of the store, and mandate gun dealers              Brady was shot — but survived — in
process of embedding numbers or letters         of illegal guns often used in crimes,”               to train their employees to recognize              Washington during Reagan’s presidency
onto the cartridge case of ammunition           Schneiderman said in a statement.                    “straw purchasers,” or people with                 after an assassination attempt was made
when fired for identification purposes.         “Microstamping is just such a tool. We               clean backgrounds who purchase guns                on the president.



Circuit
                                                  Daniel MacEntee, director of                       assumption made is about half the                  the next decade” under the assumption
                                                communications for Little’s office, said             property taxes are borne by the renters.           “that the economy will have basically
                                                the senator is reviewing the consortium’s            We don’t know exactly, but to one degree           recovered [by then].”
Continued from page 8                           proposal. She declined to comment                    or another, landlords and tenants pay                Concerning education, the consortium’s
proposed 4 percent cap on annual school         further until she takes a look at the main           property taxes … the idea is to recognize          plan proposes to shift $6 billion from the
district property tax increases.                differences between the group’s plan and             that in some proportion renters pay                local property tax base to the state tax
  A circuit breaker would limit the             her own.                                             property taxes either indirectly through           base over the course of 10 years beginning
amount of property taxes levied on                The Galef/Little bill has different tax            their rent or directly as part of their            with the 2012-2013 school year.
a home based upon the total income              credit qualifications for downstate and              lease.”                                              For Medicaid, the consortium proposes
of the household. The state would set           upstate. For example, those households                 Galef said her bill does include renters         a gradual increase of the state share of
a maximum percentage of income a                with incomes of $120,000 or less for                 indirectly in the lowest bracket of tax            Medicaid costs by basing each county’s
household is expected to pay in property        downstate — New York City and Nassau,                credit qualifications.                             share of Medicaid costs on its relative
taxes, and any amount paid in excess of         Suffolk, Rockland, Westchester, Putnam,                According to the Omnibus Consortium,             ability to pay. According to the group’s
that percentage would be refunded to the        Orange and Dutchess counties — and                   its circuit breaker plan adopts the Galef/         calculations, this would increase the
taxpayer.                                       $90,000 or less upstate who pay property             Little bill’s proposed 5-year residency            state’s Medicaid bill by $1 billion.
  “We have more people in the downstate         taxes in excess of 6 percent of their incomes        requirement. “You can’t get this credit              The consortium’s plan also proposes
suburbs, and in upstate as well, there          could receive an income tax credit of 70             when you first move into a home; we                a $3 billion increase in revenue-sharing
are people whose property taxes are an          percent of the excess. Galef said there are          didn’t want to have a situation where              with the state’s cities, towns and villages
extremely large portion of their income,”       major cost-of-living differences between             someone would take this into consideration         over a phase-in period of 10 years,
said Frank Mauro, executive director            the regions, and the circuit breaker should          in deciding how expensive a home they              beginning with the 2012-2013 fiscal
of Fiscal Policy Institute and author of        recognize that fact.                                 could afford to buy,” said Mauro.                  year.
the Omnibus Property Tax Relief and               The consortium’s bill, on the other hand             The consortium proposes to phase                   Galef described the circuit breaker bill
Reform Act. Mauro said property taxes           would use the same income qualification              in costs by gradually increasing the               as a work in progress, dependent on
do not have a logical relationship with an      for the entire state. Ron Deutsch,                   program’s income limits and by phasing             how much money is available. “It has
individual’s ability to pay.                    executive director of New Yorkers for                in coverage for renters during the second          so many good connects and it goes to
  The Omnibus Consortium is a group             Fiscal Fairness said the consortium didn’t           and third year of phase-in. The consortium         so many people. How it spins itself out
of property tax reform advocates, fiscal        want to introduce the “upstate/downstate             said the phase-in is necessary to comply           needs a lot of discussion,” she said.
watchdogs and unions united with the            rivalry” into their bill. “Based on income           with the limitations of the state’s fiscal           As for the future of the consortium’s
singular purpose of passing the Omnibus         level, people should receive the same                situation, while benefiting homeowners             proposal, the group is optimistic. “At
Property Tax Relief and Reform Act.             benefits regardless of where they live,”             in need of immediate attention.                    the press conference by the governor
  Consortium member John Whiteley of            he said.                                               Shebar said the reform components of             and legislative leaders on March 30
the New York State Property Tax Reform            The consortium also argues the Galef/              the consortium’s plan are unique. “The             they all acknowledged that they have an
Coalition said the circuit breaker would        Little bill would have a notch effect on             state has to assume more of Medicaid               agreement to try to agree,” said Mauro.
be beneficial to those whose income             tax credit qualifications. “The income               and revenue sharing. Municipalities can            “There is no circuit breaker agreement
is likely to change due to pay cuts or          portion of the Galef/Little bill includes            no longer bear this burden because the             included in the budget, but what they
unemployment. “If next month someone            everything; the smallest amount can push             property taxes are impossible,” she said.          said is they’re going to try to reach an
loses their job, it would kick in. In this      someone over to another threshold,” said               In the long term, the consortium’s plan          agreement by the end of the session.”
economy, the circuit breaker can be             Shebar. “The consortium wants to keep                proposes to decrease the pressure placed             “We do have commitment from
particularly helpful,” he said.                 this within reasonable bounds.”                      on the municipal, school and county                Malcolm Smith, and the governor said he
  On the need for the circuit breaker,            To avoid the notch effect, the                     property tax base by gradually shifting            will sign it if it crosses his desk. We will
consortium member Gioia Shebar of               consortium wants to establish a graduated            $10 billion of costs from the local to             be talking to Sheldon Silver as well,”
Taxnightmare.org said she believes the          threshold structure. For incomes up to               the state level. Of that shift, $6 billion         said Shebar. “We’re moving, but this is
middle class is suffering as jobs are           $100,000 the property tax threshold                  are school costs, $1 billion are local             the year … The truth is it’s the best bill
lost and people are unable to pay their         would be 6 percent, but if the income                Medicaid costs and $3 billion are basic            out there for the time.”
property taxes. “It’s a cost situation.         were $100,001, the threshold would be                municipal services.                                  According an August 2008 Siena
What we tried to do is replace the STAR         6 percent of $100,000 plus 7 percent of                Galef said the state does not have the           Research Institute Poll, 75 percent of
rebate with something that makes sense.         the amount over $100,000, which would                money to go to pay for these additional            627 registered New York voters support
We said replace this with the circuit           equal $6,000.07 overall.                             provisions of the consortium’s plan. “My           a circuit breaker to ensure property taxes
breaker, which gets more inclusive as             The consortium’s plans would also                  priority is the circuit breaker,” she said.        do not exceed a certain percentage of a
time goes on,” she said.                        directly include renters. The consortium             “Even in this difficult economic time,             homeowner’s income and paid for by
  Currently, New York has a modest              phases in renters: for 2010, 15 percent              you need to think about where you want             revenue generated by a “millionaire’s
circuit breaker available to households         of rent would be counted as a “property              to go. We need to keep talking about the           tax.” This Siena survey, done before
with annual incomes of $18,000 or less;         tax equivalent,” which would increase in             circuit breaker.”                                  the state approved a plan to tax New
the program has not been modified since         2011 and subsequent years to 20 percent                Whiteley agreed on the urgency of                York’s wealthiest residents at a higher
its 1978 inception.                             of rent.                                             the circuit breaker but argued the other           rate, was conducted Aug. 11-14, 2008
  The Galef/Little bill and the consortium’s      “One way or another, renters pay                   provisions represent long-term reform.             by telephone calls to 627 registered New
proposal are almost identical, except,          property taxes that are passed on from               He said the fiscal impact “doesn’t kick            York state voters. It has a margin of error
said Shebar, for a few key elements.            landlords to tenants,” said Mauro. “An               in until 2012-2013 and continues for               of 3.9 percentage points.




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The Legislative Gazette     April 13, 2009                                                                                                                                             Page 23


District
                                              their machines.                                    tore up the paper ballot and placed it              Edward McDonough, who was in
                                                After a court ruling OK’d it, members of         in a trash bin. After viewing and then            charge of the domestic absentee ballot
                                              the Rensselaer County Board of Elections           reviewing the absentee ballots from this          counting in Rensselaer, explained the
Continued from page 3                         began to count domestic absentee ballots           area someone announced that the tally             process that will determine this election.
been correctly recorded. John Conklin at      in the county office building. About 15            was, “dead even,” a phrase that has               “We check everyone’s signatures, we
the New York state Board of Elections         people sat around a table individually             reflected the election results thus far.          check the addresses and we check to
said as of last Thursday all of the 10        going through each paper vote that was               The group was there solely to count             make sure that these are deemed to be
counties in the district, which include all   mailed in. Lawyers on behalf of each               domestic paper ballots. All federal ballots,      eligible. What we’re doing is showing
or parts of Delaware, Dutchess, Otsego,       campaign sat and listened carefully,               those received from people living abroad          every ballot to the two sides so they
Rensselaer, Saratoga and Warren,              offering their objections to certain ballots       but not serving in the military, are expected     can in fact determine if they’ve got a
Columbia, Essex, Greene, Otsego and             “This one is void, it’s for Eric                 to be counted this week with military             problem and they can object or not,”
Washington counties had recanvassed           Sundwall,” one counter said who then               absentee ballots.                                 McDonough said.



Layoff
                                              put pressure on their union leaders to             letter sent to union workers and asserted         something to compromise,” Rowe said.
                                              concede and sacrifice raises.                      they didn’t do anything wrong.                      Union leaders said talks between the
                                                “If you believe, as I do, that implementing        “The governor’s letter to union members         state’s largest unions and the governor
Continued from page 3                         modest workforce concessions is a                  was entirely appropriate,” said Errol             will continue this week, though neither
with 386 layoffs; the Office of General       preferable path to significant layoffs, I          Cockfield, spokesman for the governor.            side seems to indicate a shift in their
Services, 100; and the Department of          urge you to voice this opinion to your             “We have not violated any rules.                  position.
Motor Vehicles, 175.                          union representatives,” Paterson said in             The head of the New York State                    Right now, the only thing we’ve agreed
  In his letter to union members,             the letter.                                        Correctional Officers and Police                  to is to keep talking,” Brynien said. “We
Paterson said he reduced his planned            Despite pressure from Paterson                   Benevolent Association said the layoffs           hope to come to some kind of resolution,
layoffs by 200 employees because              to concede, union leaders say their                could endanger some state workers.                but the resolution isn’t going to be just to
management-confidential employees —           members aren’t convinced they should                 “Our members work in some of the                accept the governor’s demands.”
nonunion workers whose pay raises will        opt to forgo their raises.                         most dangerous and stressful conditions             Paterson’s budget office confirmed
be suspended by order of the governor           “Our members are emailing at this                imaginable and in return all we ask               earlier last week that talks would
— fall under the control of Paterson,         rate probably a hundred an hour,” said             is that we work in a safe and secure              continue but may be stalled by the
giving him the authority to rescind their     Kenneth Brynien, president of PEF. “As             environment,” said Donn Rowe,                     unions’ decision not to concede.
planned 3 percent pay raises.                 we look through them the vast majority             president of NYSCOPBA. “Yet, when it                “We’ve indicated we want to
  The governor doesn’t have the same          of them say that we’ve earned what                 comes time to make cuts, the governor             avoid layoffs and we’ve articulated
power to cut the negotiated raises for        we’re getting now, we went many years              turns to those on the front line, proposing       that message to unions,” said Matt
union members and has been pressuring         with no raises at all … why should we              we guard more inmates, and care for               Anderson, spokesman for the Division
union leaders since last November to          now how to give up more because of the             more patients with less staff.”                   of the Budget. “If they are willing to
reopen their contracts. In his letter,        state’s mismanagement of its money?”                 “Endangering the safety of our                  reconsider then we are open to talks
Paterson indicated that workers should          Paterson’s office defended the governor’s        members and the public at large is not            with them.”



Spending
                                              towns and villages side-by-side.                   is rated eighth in the state for highest          judge the value.”
                                                “We’re not here to offer answers for             total expenditures per capita at $2,439.            He said by using the online database
                                              these differences [in spending and tax             Oneonta, on the other hand, is rated 38th         citizens can determine if it might be more
Continued from page 9                         rates between different government                 in the state at $1,643 per person.                economical for their government entities
Empire Center should be commended for         entities],” said E.J. McMahon, director              The site also displays debt per capita.         to consolidate their public services,
their launch of Benchmarking New York,        of the Empire Center for New York State            The Web site shows Oswego leads                   like police and sanitation departments,
as this new online resource will help         Policy. “One of the key things about               Oneonta in this category, too. Oswego             with adjacent towns, villages, cites or
taxpayers, business leaders, the media        this database is that it will prompt more          has the second highest debt level per             counties.
and elected officials. Benchmarking New       informed questions.”                               capita in the state at $2,835. Oneonta’s            “People can say, ‘Well, actually, I
York empowers taxpayers in developing           McMahon used the cities of Oswego                debt level is $475 per person, the 58th           think we’re paying too much … in
a more informed understanding of how          and Oneonta to demonstrate the type                highest level in the state                        the town down the road they do it
their government works and, most              of questions that might be raised when               “In business, the business sets the price       differently and they’re getting better
importantly, the way it spends their          using the database. “Here’s two upstate            but the consumer sets the value,” Adams           value,’” Adams continued. “It allows
hard-earned dollars.”                         cities … that are not too far apart in size,       said. “If you think about government,             people to have local-level discussions
  In addition to displaying the collected     where you’ll see some very substantial             government sets the price. Citizens have          about ‘Are we getting value and could
data, the site allows users to compare        differences,” he said.                             a hard time determining the value. [The           it be more efficient to merge some
statistics from different counties, cities,     According to the Web site, Oswego                Web site] gives a way for citizens to             overlapping services?’”



Flood
                                              can work together to find solutions that             The USGS monitors and partially                 to accomplish this with old partners,”
                                              help protect property and save lives,”             funds the intricate flood gauge systems.          said Gary Firda, hydrologist for USGS.
                                              said Rafael Rodriguez, director of the             They plan to continue to seek alternative         “Of the eight sites in the Delaware and
Continued from page 17                        USGS New York Water Science Center                 funding sources for other priority flood          Hudson sheds, we saved all of those
to keep 10 stations open; those 10 are        in a prepared statement. “This funding             gauges that may be discontinued if full           except one. We’re currently working
included in the 17.                           partnership is not only good for residents         funding cannot be found.                          with two other agencies to save that one.
  “This is an excellent example of how        in New York, but it will also benefit those          “People have come forward and                   We feel confident that that’s going to
federal, state and local governments          living in other states downstream.”                expressed an interest; we were able               happen.”



Credit
                                              work or a convenience store clerk.”                  Minnick said the Fair Credit Reporting          of African-Americans had bad credit
                                                Under the proposed state legislation,            Act already covers this aspect of the state       records compared with 34 percent of
                                              employers would need to be able to justify         bill as well. “The employer has to provide        Hispanics and 27 percent of Caucasians.
Continued from page 17                        their reasons for using credit information         justification to an applicant if they are           “I think we should be supportive of the
financial pressures.                          and explain how it directly relates to the         turned away for poor credit,” he said.            unemployed, and it’s certainly not too
  “It’s not those jobs we are trying to       position. Since many employers require               Benjamin said be believes the current           much to ask of businesses and employers
restrict,” Benjamin said. “We are trying      job applicants to waive their right to             state of the economy will make it more            to restrict credit checks,” Benjamin said.
to change the process of jobs that don’t      privacy, applicants have no other choice           likely that the bill will pass. A 2007            “I really want to see this bill passed and
need to rely on credit scores such as iron    than to submit to a credit history check.          Freddie Mac study found that 48 percent           enacted.”




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Cameras
                                                purpose are rarely restricted to that          for Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown. “We                  kind of issue, which we don’t agree with,
                                                purpose,” said Jennifer Carnig, director       believe that the technology will provide            and there’s others saying it’s a money
                                                of communications for the NYCLU.               greater safety at critical intersections in         grab, and we reject that perspective.”
Continued from page 6                           “Every expansion of a data bank and            the city of Buffalo, and we also anticipate           Buffalo already has 67 surveillance
material, such as information that appears      every new use for the data open the door       we will get additional revenues.”                   cameras in high crime areas, which
in car registration and driver’s license        to more and more privacy abuses.”                Cutler said the city expects to gain              Cutler said are used to bring down the
documents, the NYCLU said they are                Local leaders say it will make their         about $2.5 million a year from tickets              crime rates.
worried red light cameras could lead to         streets safer.                                 issued for drivers running red lights.                “If people obey the law there’s no
possible infringements on civil liberties.        “We’re very supportive of it and have          “There have been concerns raised by               money grab,” he said. “We’re completely
  “Government and private industry              been advocating for it for years,” said        some folks,” Cutler said, “Everything               comfortable with the fact that if people
surveillance techniques created for one         Peter Cutler, director of communications       from allegations that this is a big brother         obey the law they won’t be fined.”



MTA
                                                other levels of government.                    supporting classroom instruction.                   state Senate delegation’s opposition
                                                  While the Governor travels the state           We urge Governor Paterson, Senate                 to taxing schools to support an MTA
                                                touting the restoration of his proposed        Majority Leader Smith and Assembly                  bailout and reminds the governor and
Continued from page 4                           state aid cuts with federal stimulus           Speaker Silver to reconsider their support          the remainder of the satte Legislature
whenever the MTA or any other quasi-            money, he fails to mention his plan to         for what amounts to a double tax on Long            that school budgets are not an ATM for
governmental authority needs a bailout.         tap into critical school resources to fund     Island school property taxpayers, one that          the MTA.
The imposition of ANY tax on school             the MTA. The measure would necessitate         would endanger programs and jeopardize
payrolls will leave school budgets              the collection of $24.4 million more           voter support of school budgets.                                      Jim Kaden, President
forever vulnerable for future increases         in Nassau and Suffolk County school              The Nassau-Suffolk School Boards                            Nassau-Suffolk School Boards
to relieve the funding responsibilities of      property taxes with not one dollar             Association supports the Long Island                                           Association



Authorities
                                                practical, workable, authority reform must     oversee that fiduciary responsibility and           (A.2209, S.1537), introduced in both
                                                focus on transparency, accountability,         ensure authorities operate in the interest          the Assembly and Senate, contains these
                                                and the responsibility of authority Board      of the public. Three, we must require               reforms and more. I urge you to support
Continued from page 4                           members, and must be more than slogans         real-time publishing of authority data              this legislation as we move from slogans
moved to raise electric rates and at the        and rhetoric.                                  that is available to both the public and            and rhetoric to a law that will actually
same time they doled out bonuses to               We’ve developed a real reform package        government officials immediately. Four,             reform authorities’ actions. It would
their board members and employees.              that is simple and clear. One, we must         we must empower the Comptroller to                  bring fundamental operational reform
Hundreds of public authorities act in           impose a statutory fiduciary duty on           review authority contracts. These reforms           to authorities. It would guarantee that
ways that are counter to the best interests     authority board members to ensure that         and others will apply to the MTA, the               authority board members had as their
of the public, and there seems to be little     their only responsibility is to the mission    Power Authority, the Thruway Authority              sole legal responsibility the effective
we can do to stop them.                         of the authority and the people who            and the hundred of authorities that operate         operations of the authority. It would
  Everybody talks about the need for            use the authority services. Two, we need       in secrecy without democratic control.              guarantee actual change in the way state
change. The fundamental problem of              an Authority Budget Office that would            The Public Authorities Reform Act                 authorities function.



Ditch
                                                don’t get much more “Twilight Zone”            three men in a room decided to lay the              what universe?
                                                than that. And we’ve seen this movie           projected midyear deficit off on the guy              If the Legislature maintains this type
                                                before. In April 2009, Paterson warned         who rejected the invitation to the card             of “fiscal discipline” over the next few
Continued from page 4                           of dire revenue projections that would         game. By midyear, union concessions or,             years, we’ll be using the furniture from
World’s incumbent re-election program.          require midyear action as he put his           failing that, massive layoffs will be the           the legislative chamber as firewood.
(Paterson, whose poll numbers are               own stamp of approval on that year’s           only option left to close a new gap.                  To his credit, state Comptroller
scraping bottom, has forsworn the $30           budget agreement. This recurring pattern         Here are a couple of other things we              Thomas DiNapoli, also a Democrat,
million usually allocated for distribution      of operation makes a prima facie case for      know about the budget: The state leaders            issued a pithy summation of the budget
by the executive.)                              indictment for fiscal malpractice.             who crafted it think they have done a really        agreement a couple of days after its
  And, oh, yeah, this is all happening            It is, in truth, a case of fiscal double     fine job; and it is really hard to agree.           announcement. Promising more detail
during the biggest financial and economic       jeopardy. Not only is Albany World               Paterson, who started his accidental              later, DiNapoli acknowledged the
crisis in more than 70 years.                   imprudently using one-shot federal             tenure as governor a year ago by speaking           “extraordinary challenge” of reaching
  As one academic observer put it, “It’s        stimulus money to rapidly increase             uncommonly blunt truths about both                  a budget agreement “in the context of
‘The Twilight Zone,’” a land of distorted       spending, but it is doing so while admitting   himself and the state budget, has lapsed            a daunting recession.” In a model of
budgetary sensibilities.                        the revenue side of the budget is built on     into the pathological self-congratulations          studied understatement, DiNapoli said
  It’s a place where you raise taxes,           sand. It is imprudence compounded by           typical to Albany World bigshots.                   his quick review of the budget agreement
righteously asserting the need for “shared      blatant dishonesty.                              “We made tough choices,” he said                  “indicates it does not adequately respond
sacrifice,” but retain all of the pork for        With regard to that midyear deficit,         after the agreement to raise spending               to today’s economic realities.”
yourself for distribution to such vital         it is likely the state labor unions will       was announced. “If the Legislature can                DiNapoli went on to observe what should
resources as the Doll and Toy Museum            be picking up that tab. The unions             maintain this type of fiscal discipline             be obvious — that the budget squanders
of New York City, the Utica Curling             steadfastly resisted Paterson’s entreaties     over the next few years, we can see the             the opportunity to use the one-time federal
Club and the Greater Buffalo Italian            to give up contractually guaranteed 3          light at the end of the tunnel.”                    money to restructure the budget for the
Heritage & Food Festival.                       percent pay increases, as well as agree to       The denial of reality is a constant in            crunch to come as tax receipts can be
  As for projecting a new gap while             deferred pay. In response, the governor        Albany World budgeting, a process that              expected to continue to decline.
you are simultaneously declaring                has already announced layoffs of about         abhors both plain speaking and ownership              It’s unsustainable and everyone seems to
a budget agreement that ostensibly              9,000 workers. The structure of this           of the reality of the work product.                 know it. Everyone, that is, except the very
matches expenses to revenues, well, you         budget agreement, however, suggests the          Tough choices? Fiscal discipline? In              people who are driving us all into a ditch.




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The Legislative Gazette      April 13, 2009                                                                                                                                          Page 25


Power
                                                at risk,” he said. “They tried to end run        the one we proposed, are necessary to           FERC makes, while also clarifying
                                                the process; they tried to jam this project      carry clean power to market.”                   when the one year period begins. “The
                                                down our throats, but we fought back and           Many opponents’ celebratory remarks           bottom line is there will be no situation
Continued from page 11                          we now have a victory that defeats this          are accompanied with a warning to be            in which transmission lines will be sited
as well as provide jobs in the region.          disastrous proposal.”                            on the lookout for either future NYRI           without hearings at the local level and the
  The project was considered highly               Sen. John Bonacic, R-Mt. Hope, who             efforts or other similar projects.              governor’s approval,” said Schumer.
controversial though, especially in central     was also active in the fight against NYRI          Rep. Michael Arcuri, who actively               Destito said she was pleased businesses
New York where residents said they would        said, “Raising electric rates upstate to lower   fought to block the project, said, “I only      and homeowners will not have to face
not benefit from the line, but rather their     them downstate, as NYRI proposed, is just        hope this is not merely another attempt by      higher electricity costs, something she
communities would suffer. For nearly            bad public policy. Blighting the Catskills to    NYRI to skirt New York state’s authority        said would have been an inevitable result
three years, since the project was first        light up Manhattan was unfair.”                  to deny the project. NYRI must know we          of the project.
proposed, grassroots organizations, local         But NYRI still stands behind the project,      will not let our guard down.”                     The assemblywoman sponsored
citizens and various lawmakers fought           saying energy transmission in the state is         U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer said, “We           legislation back in 2006 that prevented
to block the power line saying it would         still a critical issue. “New York state’s        have defeated NYRI, which posed the             NYRI to acquire properties through
damage cultural, historic and economic          electrical grid has not been upgraded in 20      most immediate threat to communities            the use of eminent domain and is now
resources of the communities it would           years, so the reliability is an issue,” said     across upstate New York. Now it’s time          sponsoring a bill that would protect
run through. Opponents see the recent           NYRI spokesman David Kalson. “If you             to ensure that big power companies and          utility costs.
turn of events as a major victory, saying       don’t address reliability you’re going to        Washington bureaucrats don’t dominate             The proposed legislation (A.1121)
NYRI’s withdrawal is proof the project          see increased brownouts and blackouts.”          decisions over future transmission lines.       prohibits costs from being raised when
was ill-aimed from the beginning.                 NYRI President Chris Thompson,                 States and communities must have an             a new transmission line or system is
  Assemblywoman RoAnn Destito,                  in a letter to friends and supporters,           equal place at the table when these             constructed. The justification of the bill
D-Rome, said she was relieved residents         announcing the end of the project said,          decisions are made.”                            states, “New York’s upstate economy, the
in the area no longer have to worry about       “Our upgrade would have helped to                  Schumer also announced he will                source of power, needs all the assistance it
a power line “slicing” through their            relieve the well-documented congestion           introduce legislation that would give states    can obtain. Rather than raising the cost of
communities. “ … NYRI officials finally         in the system and, as a result, increase         and local governments more decision             doing business and raising the electric rates
admitted that this plan was impractical,        reliability and contribute to lower              making power when projects like NYRI’s          homeowners pay in the upstate region, we
inefficient and outdated,” she said. “It        electric costs for ratepayers across the         arise. Currently, the decision is left up to    should be working to reduce those costs.”
truly was a power cord to nowhere.”             state. Likewise, disappointing to all of         the state’s Public Service Commission,            Although some have expressed concern
  Sen. Joseph Griffo, R-Rome, said he now       us is the loss of jobs and taxes that            which has to make a decision within one         over word choice in the official NYRI
feels “vindicated” for his efforts throughout   our project would have brought to the            year of receiving a power company’s             letter of withdrawal, which says the
the past few years, working to block the        state.” Thompson also said, “ … if New           application. If the PSC fails to do so,         company is “suspending” the application,
project. “NYRI was nothing more than a          York and the country are going to meet           the decision is no longer up to the state       Singer confirmed NYRI has withdrawn
group of investors trying to make money         their goals to increase the use of clean,        and goes to FERC for determination.             the application from the Article VII
while ruining our environment and putting       renewable sources of energy, such as             Schumer’s legislation would give the            process and said no decisions about
the health and safety of thousands of people    wind power, transmission upgrades like           governor power to veto any decision             future actions have been made.



Owned
                                                Malcolm Smith deserve the sharp                  New York. One look at his record and this         Once that is understood, an active
                                                criticisms they’re getting for cravenly          budget demonstrates that Silver may be as       effort to defeat him should be mounted
                                                going along, -- but the real author of           economically illiterate as he is indifferent    by reformers, the business community
Continued from page 4                           this spend and tax orgy, and the source          to the needs of the state as a whole.           and people of goodwill from both parties
and record job losses in New York that          of New York’s dysfunction for over a               What is now obvious, is that everyone         who care about New York. Until that
run into the hundreds of thousands, and         decade, is the Speaker of the Assembly,          who isn’t a bought and owned insider            happens, nothing good will ever come
turns our mediocre business climate into        Sheldon Silver.                                  or public sector union lobbyist feels           out of Albany. He should be given a
one that is actually hostile to business.         The truth is, Silver has long been a           only indignation and anger over this            primary challenge and sent back to the
  Despite the criticism this budget is          smarter operator than the other men in           irresponsible budget.                           law firm on whose payroll he has been
getting from policy analysts and                the room who negotiate our future with             What needs to be understood is that           since arriving in Albany.
newspaper editorials statewide, what            him. That he is an unregenerate tool of          Silver is a New York City machine
always seems to always be lost or ignored       labor is not doubted any longer, not even        politician who is totally indifferent to                                  Mark Alesse
is the fact that this is a Sheldon Silver       by Shelly himself, but what that means is        the needs of the economy or of upstate                 Former New York State Director
budget, just like so many before it.            that major policies coming out of Albany         communities, and he is calling ALL the                  for the National Federation of
  Gov. Paterson and Majority Leader             will almost always be bad for the rest of        shots in Albany now.                                             Independent Business



Educator
                                                concern of his, “whether you’re in a large         Kolb said, “We have to get the word           table, our people weren’t represented,”
                                                city, small city, village or town.”              out across the state about our public           he said. “When Jim Tedisco and [Senate
                                                  Being an on-call adjunct professor of          policy ideas, not partisan politics. It’s       Minority Leader] Dean Skelos were
Continued from page 1                           adult and graduate education at Roberts          about ideas that work for the people.”          screaming [about the budget negotiation
broken with Jim,” Kolb says he’s happy          Wesleyan College in Chili, Monroe                  The new leader is encouraging his             process], it was about the people’s voices
he was chosen by his colleagues to be the       County, it’s no surprise the new leader          Republican conference members to use            not being heard.”
new conference leader.                          said he cares deeply about quality               television and radio programs, press              Gov. David A. Paterson praised Kolb
  “I’m ecstatic, I’m excited,” he said.         education. “In the classroom, it’s about         releases and editorial columns to share         in a prepared statement, saying, “I want
“It’s an honor and a privilege.”                principles,” he said. “Total quality is          their policy ideas. “We have to get them        to congratulate Brian M. Kolb for his
  Other Assembly members, including             something I teach as a professor …               to pay attention to us. We have to be           election to the position of Minority
those who were considered competitors           Total quality is something to strive for in      outspoken,” he said.                            Leader in the New York State Assembly.
for the position, praise the choice for a       everything we do in our lives.”                    According to Kolb, the enhanced media         Assemblyman Kolb has been a dedicated
new leader. “I think Brian’s going to do          Kolb said, “I’m proud of my connection         coverage also includes New York City media      member of the Assembly during his nine
a great job,” said Assemblyman David            to Roberts Wesleyan College.”                    outlets, which he says “sometimes care          years in elected office. I look forward
R. Townsend, Jr., R-Sylvan Beach.                 In 1984, Kolb co-founded the North             more about Wall Street or movie stars.”         to working with him and his Assembly
Townsend was seen as one of the main            American Filter Corporation, a company             Kolb said he is going to stress to            conference as we continue our work to
contenders to fill the Assembly minority        that provides air filters for industrial         colleagues that upstate and downstate           make New York the best place to live,
leader seat when Tedisco stepped down.          appliances like air compressors and              lawmakers have to work together for the         work and raise family.”
  Another expected successor to Tedisco         manufacturing machines. He said the              benefit of all New Yorkers.                       “It is with a great sense of optimism
was Assemblyman Michael J. Fitzpatrick,         lessons learned in small business have             “We have to reach out to different parts      that I congratulate Brian Kolb on his
R-Smithtown. “We were not running               made him a better legislator.                    of the state to come up with solutions,”        election as Assembly Republican leader,
against each other, we were running               “In government, you have customers             he said. “There’s no ‘cookie-cutter’            said Joseph N. Mondello, chairman of the
for the job as leader,” he said. “It was a      … [They are] the people that elect us,           approach to deal with every problem.”           New York Republican State Committee.
friendly competition and he won it, fair        the taxpayers,” he said. “The customer is          “People in the north country care             “Assemblyman Kolb has been a strong,
and square.”                                    always first. You don’t survive in small         more about receiving funding for                outspoken voice for the people of his
  Fitzpatrick said he supports Kolb not         business if you don’t make them happy.           communications, the Internet and                district and this entire state. Families and
only for his “strong conservative” political    If you don’t make them happy, they’re            increasing tourism than a subway system         businesses across New York state are
beliefs, but also for his personality. “He’s    going to go somewhere else.”                     that doesn’t really affect them,” he said.      fortunate to have a tireless advocate and
got a great sense of humor with a quick-          Fitzpatrick said with Kolb’s business            While he was minority leader pro              defender working on their behalf in the
wit,” he said. “He works hard.”                 background, “The private sector has a            tempore, Kolb proposed many rule change         Assembly.”
  With a new position comes new work            friend in Brian.”                                initiatives he hopes to carry through             Kolb noted he would be focusing all
for Kolb, and he was more than happy              Townsend, who got together with Kolb           as minority leader, like publishing the         of his time and energy on the Assembly
to outline his new priorities as Assembly       earlier this year to discuss the future of       minutes of bill discussions and requiring       minority leader position and would not
minority leader in an interview last            the Assembly Republican conference,              that the text of a bill indicates whether the   be running for House of Representatives
Wednesday.                                      said the two spoke a great deal about the        legislation includes unfunded mandates.         in the 29th district against incumbent
  “First of all, we have to reduce the          role the media plays in politics.                He said these provisions “will help the         Eric Massa, D-Corning.
cost of living here for residents and             “We wanted to get people to foster a           public see how [the bill] impacts them.”          “Well, I think Eric Massa, wherever he
businesses. We have to get government           better understanding [of the Republican            Kolb is also calling for equality             is right now, is breathing a sigh of relief,”
out of the way by lowering taxes,” he           conference] using the media,” Townsend           between all members of the Assembly             Kolb said.
said. “We also have to create jobs in the       said. “There are two sides to every              — Democrat or Republican. He said he              Kolb will receive a $34,500 stipend for
private sector, not in the government           question, but one side seems to always           was especially frustrated during budget         the minority leader position in addition
payroll.”                                       get played. The other side, our side,            negotiations held at the end of March.          to his $79,500 base salary. He will also
  Kolb also said public safety is another       doesn’t.”                                          “When we were left out of the discussion      keep all of Tedisco’s previous staff.
Page 26                                                                                                                       The Legislative Gazette         April 13, 2009




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      Read the classifieds online at www.legislativegazette.com
The Legislative Gazette        April 13, 2009                                           CALENDAR                                                                             Page 27
  The DEADLINE for Calendar submissions is the Tuesday prior        ages 4-6.                                                 Oscar-winning documentary filmmaker Alex Gibney
to publication. The Legislative Gazette will accept submissions     1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. Family Program,                    in conjunction with his appearance on Friday, April
by FAX at (518) 486-6609, by e-mail at editor@legislativegazette.   ARTventures, NYS Museum, Main Lobby. During               24. This is the first of three screenings. Page Hall,
com, by mail to Calendar, P.O. Box 7329, Albany, NY, 12224, or      a hands-on, art-making experience with instructor         135 Western Avenue on the University at Albany
in person at the Gazette office, Concourse.                         Peggy Steinbach, participants will visit an exhibit       downtown campus. FREE.
                                                                    and then complete an art project. There is a $5
                          April 14                                  charge for non-members.                                                         April 23
7:30 p.m. Concert, Indigo Girls, The Egg. The                       7:00 p.m. Concert, Chamber Singers, Picotte               12:00 p.m. Music, Music Jam, NYS Museum
Indigo Girls’ signature harmonies and distinctive                   Recital Hall, Massry Center for the Arts, 1002            4th Floor. Take a lunch-time break or join the
songs—from their hits “Closer to Fine” and “Least                   Madison Avenue. Free                                      musicians as they play acoustic music inspired
Complicated” to their new music on Poseidon and                     8:00 p.m. Comedy, Stephen Lynch, The Egg.                 by the Celtic traditions of jigs, reels, waltzes and
the Bigger Bug—has made them one of the day’s                       Comedian Stephen Lynch performs in Comedy                 marches, as well as occasional popular songs, jazz
most influential folk-rock duos. $40                                Central Live: 3 Balloons Tour. $29.50                     standards and early music. Free.
                                                                                                                              1:00 p.m. Lecture, The Van Rensselaer Era, NYS
                          April 15                                                        April 19                            Museum, Huxley Theater. Stefan Bielinski, Dr.
12:00 p.m. Lecture, Predicting and Mitigating                       1:30 p.m. Master Music Class. Alexa Still, Picotte        Charles Gehring and Fred Bassett discuss the 17th
Hotspots of Herpetofauna Road Mortality, NYS                        Recital Hall, Massry Center for the Arts, 1002            and 18th century Van Rensselaer family. $35 in
Museum, Huxley Theater. Mortality of amphibians                     Madison Avenue. The first Saint Rose Flute Day            Advance (by April 20) and $40 at the door
and reptiles is a serious problem on public roads                   will offer a master class with celebrated flutist Alexa   7:30 p.m. Film. Taxi to the Dark Side, SUNY Albany,
in New York state. Dr. Tom Langen, associate                        Still. Free.                                              Page Hall, 135 Western Ave, Downtown Campus.
professor of biology at Clarkson University, presents               4:00 p.m. Concert. Student Choir Concert. The first       A stunning exposé of American torture practices
his research findings on how locations of road-                     Saint Rose Flute Day will offer a flute choir concert     during the recent wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the
kill hotspots can be accurately predicted using                     featuring Saint Rose students, alumni and high            film follows the plight of Dilawar, a young Afghani
Geographic Information Systems (GIS).                               school honors flute choir. Free.                          cab driver who is tortured and killed after being
4:15 p.m. Play Scene Readings, SUNY Albany,                         7:00 p.m. Dance Theater, Netherlands Dans                 wrongly identified as a terror operative. FREE
Recital Hall, Performing Arts Center. A. R.                         Theater II, The Egg. The extraordinary Dutch              7:30 p.m. Film. Alex Gibney Film Festival. The New
Gurney, who has been writing for the American                       company of young talents is famous for being one          York State Writers Institute will screen three films by
stage since the 1950s, is one of the few major                      of the most revolutionary ensembles in the world of       Oscar-winning documentary filmmaker Alex Gibney
playwrights whose past and new work continues                       modern dance. $28 Adults. $24 Senior. $14 Child.          in conjunction with his appearance on Friday, April
to be performed widely four decades later. Gurney                                                                             24. This is the second of three screenings. Page
is best-known for trenchant and comic work that                                           April 20                            Hall, 135 Western Avenue on the University at
examines the manners and mores of the upper                         7:00 p.m. Concert. Brass Choir Concert. Picotte           Albany downtown campus. FREE.
middle-class.                                                       Recital Hall, Massry Center for the Arts, 1002
7:00 p.m. Lecture, Old Bones, Caves, and                            Madison Avenue. Free.                                     Please send your calendar listings to James Gormley,
Chemistry, NYS Museum, Huxley Theater.                                                                                        editor of The Legislative Gazette by e-mail at: editor@
Dr. Robert S. Feranec, curator of vertebrate                                                                                  legislativegazette.com or by fax at: 518-486-6609.
                                                                                          April 21
paleontology, discusses the importance of recent                                                                              Editor has the right to exclude any listings or edit
                                                                    1:00 to 2:15 p.m. Fair. Children’s Wellness/Fitness
excavations of fossil mammals in New York and                                                                                 listings for content and space limitations. Thank you.
                                                                    Fair, Atrium and Mezzanine, Events and Athletics
Spain.
                                                                    Center, 420 Western Avenue. This fair will promote
7:30 p.m. Concert, Los Lobos, The Egg. Using

                                                                                                                              MEET
                                                                    physical, spiritual, social, emotional and intellectual
musical molds built on the blues, rockabilly, jazz,
                                                                    wellness as well as safety to families throughout                           ME AT




                                                                                                                                                                 The Plaza
Latin and their own Mexican-American heritage,
                                                                    the Capital Region. Free.

                                                                                                                              THE               PLAZA...
Los Lobos is recognized as one of the world’s
                                                                    7:00 p.m. Concert. St. Rose Campus and
foremost contemporary roots-rock bands. $29.50
                                                                    Community Band Concert. Kathleen McManus
                                                                    Picotte Recital Hall, Massry Center for the Arts,
                          April 16                                  1002 Madison Avenue. FREE.
12:00 p.m. Music, Music Jam, NYS Museum                             7:30 p.m. Lecture. Constance Vickery Series                Monday, April 13, 2009
4th Floor. Take a lunch-time break or join the                      in Ethics in Leadership “Health Care and the               Underground Railroad Display
musicians as they play acoustic music inspired                      Common Good,” Touhey Forum, Thelma P Lally   .               All day Bus Turn
by the Celtic traditions of jigs, reels, waltzes and                School of Education, 1009 Madison Ave. In Dr.              Ray LaMontagne
marches, as well as occasional popular songs, jazz                  Edmund Pellegrino’s lecture, he will address                 8pm - 11pm The Egg
standards and early music. Free.                                    the most pivotal issues regarding our nation’s
12:15 to 1:15 p.m. Tour, A Walking Tour of the                      healthcare within the crucial context of social well       Tuesday, April 14, 2009
Local History and Genealogy Resources at the                        being and the common good.                                 Confetti Stage “Romeo & Juliet”
State Library, 7th Floor of NYS Library. The New                    7:30 p.m. Concert. Colin Hay performs. Singer,               11am - 2pm South Concourse
York State Library is a treasure chest of resources                 guitarist and main songwriter of Australia’s Men at        Indigo Girls
for those tracing their family histories. Join us for a             Work. He makes his debut at The Egg with a solo              7.30pm - 10.30pm The Egg
one-hour tour highlighting published genealogies,                   acoustic performance. Tickets are $24.00.
local histories, church records and other resources.                                                                           Wednesday, April 15, 2009
Free. Space is limited and registration is required.
                                                                                          April 22                             Farmers Market
8:00 p.m. Concert, Jefferson Grisman, The Egg.
                                                                    12:00 p.m. Lecture, Ancient Seas, Ancient                    10am - 2pm Bus Turn
Jefferson Starship featuring Paul Kantner and
                                                                    Volcanism, NYS Museum, Huxley Theater. Dr.                 Deferred Comp Info Table
mandolinist David Grisman perform the music from
                                                                    Chuck Ver Straeten, a sedimentary geologist,                 8am - 4pm Postal Corridor
the recent recording “Jefferson’s Tree of Liberty”
                                                                    examines the mysteries of New York and the world           Yoga
and the iconic songs of the Jefferson Airplane,
                                                                    around 400 million years ago and reveals the fate
Starship and the David Grisman Quintet. $50/$40                                                                                  12pm - 1pm The Egg
                                                                    of volcanic ash layers in ancient seas and lakes.
                                                                                                                               Los Lobos (Concert) (750)
                                                                    12:00 p.m. Lecture, Long-term Responses of
                          April 17                                  Breeding Birds to Habitat Loss and Fragmentation,            7.30pm - 10.30pm The Egg
7:30 p.m. Comedy Show, Demetri Martin, The                          NYS Museum, Huxley Theater. As the first-ever
Egg. An evening with comedian Demetri Martin of                     resurveyed state bird atlas, the New York State
                                                                                                                               Thursday, April 16, 2009
Comedy Central’s “Important Things with Demetri                     Breeding Bird Atlas provides a unique opportunity
                                                                                                                               Italian Fest
Martin.” $35                                                        to study the long-term responses of breeding birds            10am - 2pm Bus Turn, South Concourse
7:30 p.m. Film, Sedmikrasky (Daisies), SUNY Albany,                 to changes in habitat availability. Dr. Benjamin           Jefferson Grisman Project
Page Hall, 135 Western Ave, Downtown Campus.                        Zuckerberg, a post-doctoral associate at the                  8pm - 11pm The Egg
Two young women embark upon a series of crazy                       Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology, presents
pranks in order to protest their boredom with Czech                 research on the responses of forest birds to               Friday, April 17, 2009
society. Chytilová pioneers a subversive, narrative-                patterns of forest cover throughout New York.              Yoga
free structure employed by later generations of                     5:15 p.m. Seminar. An Illustrated History of                 12pm - 1pm The Egg
experimental and indie filmmakers. FREE                             the Citizen’s Role in Homeland Security in 20th            Demetri Martin
7:30 p.m. Concert, Saint Rose Camerata “An                          Century America, Carondelet Symposium, Thelma                7.30pm - 11.00pm The Egg
Evening of Opera,” Picotte Recital Hall, Massry                      .
                                                                    P Lally School of Education, 1009 Madison                  Stephen Lynch
Center for the Arts, 1002 Madison Avenue. Free                      Avenue. Colloquium woth Dr. Martin Greenberg,                8pm - 11pm The Egg
10:30 p.m. Comedy Show, Demetri Martin, The                         Assistant Professor of Criminal Justice and
Egg. An evening with comedian Demetri Martin of                     Sociology at The College of Saint Rose. Free
Comedy Central’s “Important Things with Demetri                     7:30 p.m. Film. Enron: The Smartest Guys in the
Martin.” $35                                                        Room, SUNY Albany, Page Hall, 135 Western Ave,
                                                                    Downtown Campus. Based on the book by Fortune
                                                                                                                                                     Empire State Plaza • Albany, NY
                          April 18                                  reporters Bethany McLean and Peter Elkind, this
11:00 a.m. Children’s Program, Furry Tales and                      Oscar-nominated film presents the rapid rise and
Touchables, NYS Museum, Discovery Place. Stories                    fall of the fraudulent energy trading company that
come to life as youngsters touch real animal skins,                 became America’s seventh largest corporation. FREE
bones, plants, and other objects while listening to                 7:30 p.m. Film. Alex Gibney Film Festival. The New
a storybook reading. Recommended for children                       York State Writers Institute will screen three films by
Page 28   The Legislative Gazette   April 13, 2009

				
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