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New York State Government

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Local coverage of what's going on in New York state government, where Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the state Legislature — dominated by Democrats following the 2018 midterms — are pursuing a legislative agenda in open defiance of federal policy under President Donald Trump. (Includes links to state legislators and legislation, as well as relevant agencies, organizations, people, primary sources and public events.)

Local coverage of what's going on in New York state government, where Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the state Legislature — dominated by Democrats following the 2018 midterms — are pursuing a legislative agenda in open defiance of federal policy under President Donald Trump. (Includes links to state legislators and legislation, as well as relevant agencies, organizations, people, primary sources and public events.)
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NewsPlexus Media November 19, 2019

Groups warn impending plan for public campaign financing in NY may miss the mark
With the deadline for a statewide public campaign financing plan less than two weeks away, proponents of reform are worried that the New York Public Financing Commission is squandering a historic opportunity.
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NewsPlexus Media November 19, 2019

State GOP lawmakers propose bills to derail criminal justice reforms
Republican lawmakers have introduced legislation intended to obstruct broad criminal justice reforms — approved as part of the last budget bill — that are set to take effect in January.
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NewsPlexus Media November 19, 2019

New York awards $30 million to address homelessness across the state
The state has conditionally awarded $30 million to agencies across New York to provide support services and operating funding for at least 1,200 units of supportive housing for homeless persons with special needs, conditions or other challenges.
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NewsPlexus Media November 18, 2019

AG launches portal for complaints about National Grid NYC/LI moratorium
New York Attorney General Letitia James has announced the launch of a new portal for New Yorkers to submit complaints about the effects of National Grid’s natural gas moratorium in New York City and Long Island.
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NewsPlexus Media November 18, 2019

NYCLU releases new report on solitary confinement in NYS, advocates for HALT Act
The New York Civil Liberties Union has released a new report showing how commonly solitary confinement is used to punish people in New York state prisons, and is advocating for passage of the HALT Act in the upcoming legislative session.
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NewsPlexus Media November 15, 2019

Green Light Law gets green light
New York state won a victory in federal court last week when U.S. District Judge Elizabeth Wolford dismissed a lawsuit to prevent its Green Light Law — which allows undocumented immigrants to receive driver's licenses — from moving forward.
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NewsPlexus Media November 15, 2019

State prepares for expected snowstorm next week, cautions New Yorkers to do same
New Yorkers are being urged to prepare for difficult driving conditions and heavy snow due to a cold front that is forecast to impact some areas of the state beginning Monday morning.
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NewsPlexus Media November 15, 2019

Adoptees will soon have the right to access their New York birth certificates
Gov. Andrew Cuomo has signed legislation allowing adoptees to receive a certified copy of their birth certificate when they turn 18 years old.
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NewsPlexus Media November 14, 2019

Plan to require long-term planning of sprawling state trailways hits Gov's desk
A bill has been sent to the governor’s desk that would require New York to create a plan regarding state non-motorized trailways.
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NewsPlexus Media November 12, 2019

State senator proposes cybersecurity civilian reserve force, Hofstra opens CIRC
A state senator has proposed legislation that would create a civilian cybersecurity reserve force within the New York National Guard.
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NewsPlexus Media November 12, 2019

Gov signs Restoration of Honor Act, giving LGBTQ vets access to state benefits
Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed legislation today enacting The Restoration of Honor Act, which will give LGBTQ veterans who were denied an honorable discharge because of their sexual orientation or gender identity the right to apply to have their New York State veterans' benefits restored.
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NewsPlexus Media November 10, 2019

Gaughran introduces law to help fund child victims' lawsuits
State Senator James Gaughran has introduced legislation that would establish a Child Victim Foundation Fund to assist victims of childhood sexual assault with civil legal services and fees.
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NewsPlexus Media November 9, 2019

State senator proposes three-digit state suicide hotline
A state senator has proposed legislation that would establish a three-digit state suicide hotline.
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NewsPlexus Media November 7, 2019

Proposed law would explicitly allow diners to use personal to-go containers
A new bill introduced last month by Sen. Jen Metzger, D-Rosendale, and Assemblymember Pat Fahy, D-Albany, would explicitly allow New York diners to pack leftover food in their own personal to-go containers.
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NewsPlexus Media November 7, 2019

New state  law requires cause of opioid overdose on death certificates
The state enacted legislation this week requiring that death certificates in cases of opioid overdose specify which opioid was involved in the death, if known.
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NewsPlexus Media November 6, 2019

Gov signs new tenant protection into law
Gov. Andrew Cuomo has signed legislation prohibiting landlords from collecting rent or maintaining a nonpayment eviction proceeding during the period for which there is no valid certificate of occupancy. The law also prohibits tenants and owners from living in a residence that does not have a valid certificate of occupancy, and expands existing laws to cover cities with a population of less than 325,000 people.
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NewsPlexus Media November 5, 2019

Good government groups call on state leaders to limit lawmakers’ outside income
Five good government groups sent a letter to state leaders last month urging them to limit outside income for state legislators, “consistent with the recommendations of the 2018 New York State Compensation Committee,” during the next legislative session.
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NewsPlexus Media November 5, 2019

Bill seeks to close sexual harassment loophole affecting certain state employees
A bill introduced this month by state Senator Andrew Gounardes seeks to close a federal loophole lawmakers say has allowed the state to eschew responsibility in sexual harassment cases brought against elected officials and state judges.
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NewsPlexus Media November 5, 2019

State senator introduces law that would allow incarcerated felons to vote
A state senator has introduced legislation that would allow incarcerated felons to vote.
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NewsPlexus Media November 4, 2019

New law establishes clear standards for legal action against water polluters
The governor has signed legislation establishing a clear standard for commencement of an action by a public water supplier once pollution is detected in a public water supply.
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NewsPlexus Media November 4, 2019

Age to legally purchase tobacco products in NY becomes 21 next week
New York's law raising the minimum sales age for tobacco and electronic cigarette products goes into effect on Wednesday, Nov. 13.
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NewsPlexus Media November 4, 2019

Senate hearing tomorrow on e-cigs and vaping
The Senate has announced a hearing to be held tomorrow, Nov. 4, to examine the safety and potential harms of electronic cigarettes and vaping, especially among school-aged youth.
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NewsPlexus Media November 3, 2019

2 new election laws update poll closings, allow consolidation of more districts
Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed two more pieces of election legislation last week — one to establish a uniform poll closing process on election nights and another authorizing the consolidation of certain election districts with fewer than 10 eligible voters.
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NewsPlexus Media November 3, 2019

New Delta Terminal C gates unveiled at LaGuardia, funding approved for AirTrain
This last week saw the opening of the first new concourse and gates at Delta Air Lines' new Terminal C, part of an $8 billion transformation of LaGuardia Airport. And funding has been approved for the AirTrain LGA, which will connect the airport with a new station at Willets Point linked to enhanced Long Island Railroad service to and from New York City
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NewsPlexus Media October 31, 2019

Coalition and comptroller oppose considering fusion voting with public financing
Concerned that a series of preliminary decisions by the state Public Financing Commission will result in a “weak and unworkable” public financing system focused more on protecting incumbents than reducing corruption in New York, the Fair Elections campaign released a letter this week highlighting those concerns and identifying components seen as crucial to the implementation of an effective system that could serve as a model for the rest of the nation. The campaign and the state comptroller both came out against tying up the question of fusion voting with the proposed public finance system.
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NewsPlexus Media October 29, 2019

DEC seeks public input on proposed changes to Endangered/Threatened species list
New York State DEC Commissioner has announced changes that are being considered to amend state regulations and designations for protecting endangered and threatened species across the state.
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NewsPlexus Media October 29, 2019

State enacts legislation to increase transparency in elections
Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed legislation this week aimed at increasing the transparency of New York elections by mandating the electronic filing of campaign finance information, clarifying the process for appointing poll watchers and ensuring that polling locations are adequately staffed.
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NewsPlexus Media October 28, 2019

Digital privacy lacking in NY, according to national comparison, state lawmakers
An evaluation of state digital privacy laws finds that New Yorkers personal information and online habits are not as safe as they could be.
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NewsPlexus Media October 28, 2019

NY continues to trail nation when it comes to tax climate
New York continues to rank among the worst in the nation when it comes to tax climate, according to rankings recently released by the Tax Foundation.
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NewsPlexus Media October 27, 2019

Gov proclaims "Day of Action to Combat Anti-Semitism" one year after PA shooting
Gov. Andrew Cuomo has proclaimed today, October 27, 2019 — the one-year anniversary of the mass shooting at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh, Pa. — as a "Day of Action to Combat Anti-Semitism."
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NewsPlexus Media October 25, 2019

NY accepting vaping devices on Nat'l Prescription Drug Take Back Day, Oct. 26
On National Prescription Drug Take Back Day this year, New Yorkers will be able to dispose of vaping devices and cartridges as well.
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NewsPlexus Media October 25, 2019

NY's Election Protection Hotline will be available during early voting period
The Attorney General’s Office will make its Election Protection Hotline available to voters during New York’s first early voting period, from October 26 until November 3.
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NewsPlexus Media October 24, 2019

Gov signs bills to make voting easier and voters more informed
Gov. Andrew Cuomo has signed a package of bills meant to make election ballots easier to read and to allow voters to be better informed about the content of those ballots.
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NewsPlexus Media October 24, 2019

NY announces significant advances for state offshore wind initiative
The state has finalized contracts for the largest procurement of offshore wind energy in the nation, is seeking port operators and market participants who are interested in upgrading and investing in New York ports to support the growing offshore wind industry, and will hold workshop to identify technical and training needs for new workforce.
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NewsPlexus Media October 22, 2019

NY enacts legislation to provide more funding to disadvantaged libraries
Gov. Cuomo has signed legislation providing state funding for up to 90 percent of the total project approved costs for construction of public libraries in economically distressed communities.
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NewsPlexus Media October 21, 2019

Dubious accounting practices call state’s financial planning into question
A deferred state disbursement that shifted a $1.7 billion Medicare payment has resulted in an inaccurate financial forecast reflected in the state’s financial plan — which experts say will experience a shortfall of $9 billion more than projected between 2020 and 2023, bringing the expected budget gap to $21.8 billion.
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NewsPlexus Media October 20, 2019

Gov hosts regional cannabis/vaping summit with four NE states to develop policy
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo co-hosted the Regional Cannabis Regulation and Vaping Summit in New York City on Thursday, with Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont, New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy and Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf. Joined by legislative leaders and officials from New York, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania and Connecticut, the governors discussed a joint regional approach to cannabis and vaping legislation and policies.
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NewsPlexus Media October 18, 2019

Poll: Majority of NY voters support impeachment, paying college athletes, & more
According to a recent Siena College poll: New Yorkers support impeaching and removing President Trump; trust Nancy Pelosi and CNN News; oppose dividing New York into two states; would pay college athletes; feel Cuomo is doing a better job; have lost faith in leading Republicans; and, by a tiny margin, are now in favor of granting driver licenses to undocumented immigrants.
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NewsPlexus Media October 18, 2019

Driver's license applicants in NY can take courses online as soon as next summer
Next summer, driver's license applicants in New York will have the option of taking the required training and instruction course online.
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NewsPlexus Media October 18, 2019

State enacts law enabling prosecution of pardoned presidential associates
Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed legislation Wednesday closing a “double jeopardy” loophole and weakening presidential pardon powers.
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NewsPlexus Media October 17, 2019

State Senate to hold statewide hearings on higher education costs, accessibility
The state Senate Committee on Higher Education will hold a series of public hearings across the state to discuss the cost of public higher education, financial aid programs, state support, TAP/GAP, student borrowing and other challenges to affordability and accessibility.
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NewsPlexus Media October 17, 2019

AG James and others intervene on behalf of EPA emissions authority
New York Attorney General Letitia James, along with a coalition of 30 states and local governments, filed a motion to intervene in an industry lawsuit in order to defend the Environmental Protection Agency’s authority to establish meaningful emission limits on greenhouse gases produced by power plants and other industrial sources.
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NewsPlexus Media October 15, 2019

OSC: Residents of long-term care facilities lack access to advocates
A significant percentage of residents in long-term care facilities in New York lack regular access to ombudsman services due to a decline in the number of volunteers and a severe shortage of paid staff, according to an audit released by State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli.
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NewsPlexus Media October 14, 2019

Gov. Andrew Cuomo has signed new laws will prevent certain funds from being used in calculations of how much public assistance an individual or family will receive.
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NewsPlexus Media October 13, 2019

Proposed legislation would protect honey bees in New York state
Sen. Alessandra Biaggi, of the New York State Senate Agriculture Committee, has introduced a bill to preserve and protect honey bee swarms and colonies from human threats, and support crop pollination across New York state.
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NewsPlexus Media October 13, 2019

Proposed law would increase access to immunization data
State legislators have proposed a new law that would increase public access to immunization data.
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NewsPlexus Media October 12, 2019

New legislation expanding protections against discrimination and sexual harassment went into effect today, eliminating the restriction that harassment be "severe or pervasive" in order for it to be legally actionable and prohibiting confidentiality requirements in employment discrimination cases.
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NewsPlexus Media October 12, 2019

New NY law requires makers of menstrual products to disclose ingredients
On International Day Of The Girl, Gov. Andrew Cuomo has signed legislation requiring menstrual product packages or boxes sold in New York state to contain a plain and conspicuous printed list of all the ingredients in the products.
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NewsPlexus Media October 11, 2019

Environmental scorecard: 2019 was “greatest legislative session” in a generation
EPL/Environmental Advocates have released their annual scorecard of state legislators’ voting records on environmental issues.
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NewsPlexus Media October 10, 2019

Early voting to begin Oct. 26, tomorrow last day to register
New Yorkers will be able to cast their votes in the upcoming election as early as ten days in advance, as long as they've registered to vote by tomorrow.
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