This Week in Albany

Week ending June 28, 2013

Headlines include:

  • End of Session Update
  • U.S. Senate Passes Immigration Legislation
  • Supreme Court Rules on Marriage Equality

Continue reading…


This Week in Albany

Week ending June 28, 2013

End of Session Update

In an early morning ending to a long legislative session, state lawmakers passed several bills that impact CSEA members but some significant issues were left outstanding. As expected, the Governor’s “Tax-Free NY,” local government restructuring board, and casino legislation all passed both houses.

No agreement was reached on the Governor’s Women’s Equality Agenda. The Assembly passed all 10 parts in an omnibus bill while the Senate voted on and passed 9 individual bills without taking a vote on a bill dealing with abortion. Since the two houses did not vote on the same bills, the issues are still outstanding.

Lawmakers did not reach an agreement on campaign finance reform or ethics reform. Governor Cuomo has said that he will instead form a commission to investigate campaign filings at the State Board of Elections. The commission has not yet been announced, but is expected in the near future.

In addition, the Senate failed to pass safe patient handling and legislation granting the State Comptroller the authority to audit Local Development Corporations.

U.S. Senate Passes Immigration Legislation

The U.S. Senate passed legislation that will overhaul the nation’s immigration laws. The bill would double the number of U.S. Border Patrol agents along the U.S.-Mexico border and require the construction of 700 miles of fence. In addition, it would create a pathway to citizenship for millions of illegal immigrants. The bill passed by a vote of 68-32, with all Democrats voting in support and 14 Republicans voting in favor of the bill as well.

The legislation now moves to the House of Representatives where its fate is uncertain. House leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) has said that the Senate bill will not come up for a vote in its current form in his chamber.

Supreme Court Rules on Marriage Equality

On Wednesday, the Supreme Court ruled that the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) is unconstitutional. The ruling means that same-sex couples who are legally married will now be entitled to federal benefits. In a separate decision, the Court dismissed an appeal of a lower court ruling that found California’s ban on same-sex marriage, known as Proposition 8, to be unconstitutional. The ruling means that same-sex couples can once again marry in that state.

Two Important Events This Weekend

 

We are urging our members to support these

two very important events this weekend.

Thank you for your cooperation.

stop worker deaths

PLEASE NOTE: CSEA members who are planning to march in Pride 2013 should meet our contingent this Sunday, June 30th at 39th street, bet. 5th and 6th Avenues. We're in Section 4, Group 10. PLEASE ARRIVE NO LATER THAN 11:30 AM. For more information please call Niall Kirby at 212-982-3180. Thank you!

PLEASE NOTE: CSEA members who are planning to march in Pride 2013 should meet our contingent this Sunday, June 30th at 39th street, bet. 5th and 6th Avenues. We’re in Section 4, Group 10. PLEASE ARRIVE NO LATER THAN 11:30 AM. For more information please call Niall Kirby at 212-982-3180. Thank you!

 

 


 

Join the International Day of Action to urge Walmart and Gap to sign safety pact

Media_NoSponsorsCSEA is joining a coalition of labor groups Saturday, June 29, for an International Day of Action to urge Walmart, Gap and other corporations to sign the legally binding Accord on Fire and Building Safety in Bangladesh in the wake of the April 24 Rana Plaza building collapse in Dkaha that killed 1,127 in Bangladesh, the November 2012 Tazreen factory fire and numerous other incidents at garment factories in Bangladesh.
The rally and march will be held Saturday, June 29, at 1 p.m. at Petrosino Square, near Spring and Lafayette streets in Manhattan.

Get more information and RSVP
Download a flyer

Congratulations Region 2 Scholarship Winners!

Three committed and hard-working students were the recipients of the Irving Flamenbaum Scholarship. Learn more about these dynamic students here.

Scholarship winners

Region 2 Scholarship Winners

 

Three graduates from our union family won the prestigious Irving Flamenbaum scholarship this year.  Klay Fitzgerald, Sharon Pang and Alexyea Holmes. Their parents are members of Local 010 and Local 429.  A luncheon and program were held in their honor at the Metropolitan Region office where Region 2 Secretary Delphine Moultrie announced the scholarships. Sheila Conroy, president of Local 429 and Janet Bullock an activist from Local 010 also made brief speeches. Congratulations to the all graduates!

 

Alexyea Holmes will be attending St. John's University to study accounting. Her mother Cheryl Holmes is a Direct care worker at Staten Island DDSO. Here she is with her father Eugene Holmes.

Alexyea Holmes will be attending St. John’s University to study accounting. Her mother Cheryl Holmes is a Direct care worker at Staten Island DDSO. Here she is with her father Eugene Holmes.

 

Sharon Pang will be attending Hunter College as a Macauly Honors students. Her mother, Ling Lai Pang works at the NY State veterans Home and her father, Kai Pang, works at the NYS Compensation Board.

Sharon Pang will be attending Hunter College as a Macauly Honors students. Her mother, Ling Lai Pang works at the NY State veterans Home and her father, Kai Pang, works at the NYS Compensation Board.

 

Klay Fitzgerald will be attending Penn State University and major in Pre-Med. His mother, Angela Christmas works at the Supreme Court Appellate Division Departmental Disciplinary Committee.

Klay Fitzgerald will be attending Penn State University and major in Pre-Med. His mother, Angela Christmas works at the Supreme Court Appellate Division Departmental Disciplinary Committee.

 


 

This Week in Albany

Week ending June 21, 2013

2013 Legislative Session Draws to a Close

Throughout this week, the Governor and legislative leaders have been working to resolve outstanding issues including casino gambling, Tax-Free NY (now called Start-Up NY) and a women’s equality agenda. The legislature is expected to work through Friday night to pass many of these bills. As of this writing, the Assembly has passed many of the major pieces of legislation while the Senate still has a lot left to do.

Agreements have been reached on several issues on Governor Cuomo’s agenda.

Despite re-labeling “NY Tax-Free” as “Start-Up NY,” the Governor’s plan to allow businesses to locate on and around college campuses and pay no taxes remains bad policy. This legislation creates a special class of employees that will pay no state income tax for five years, and only some taxes on income over $200,000 for an additional five years after that. CSEA has been and continues to be opposed to the inequity of this plan. On a positive note, CSEA was able to secure job protection language to protect our members from the very real threat of privatization attempts on SUNY campuses.

Additionally, the Governor’s plan to create a financial restructuring board for distressed municipalities is expected to be passed by both houses. While this legislation can be viewed as an attempted power grab by the Executive to control local government finances, the decision to request a review or assistance from the 10-member board is voluntary and lies with the municipality.

Both houses have reached an agreement on a bill that would allow for four upstate casinos. Before the legislation can become law, voters will have to approve legalizing casino gaming through a public referendum that will be on the ballot this November.

As of this writing, no consensus was reached on a women’s equality agenda.

CSEA Successful in Getting Priority Legislation Passed

While the legislature continues to pass bills, CSEA has already been successful in getting high priority legislation passed this session.

The Veterans’ Employment Act has passed both houses and will now be sent to the Governor. This legislation will help to reduce the high unemployment rate among veterans returning from active duty by requiring the state to use qualified veterans for temporary jobs prior to going to a third party.

Legislation has passed both houses that would restore the $90 million cut to the Office for People with Developmental Disabilities called for in this year’s state budget.

Both houses have passed legislation that requires local social service districts to provide OCFS with at least 60 days’ notice prior to lowering financial eligibility levels for child care assistance.

CSEA supported a bill that requires the state to provide the SUNY health science centers with the same amount of operating support as the prior year, including fringe benefits, unless a fiscal emergency is declared by the Governor. The bill has passed both houses.

This Week in Albany

Week ending June 21, 2013

Headlines include:

  • 2013 Legislative Session Draws to a Close
  • CSEA Successful in Getting Priority Legislation Passed

Continue reading…


Leaders, Activists Attend Region 2 Education & Women’s Committee’s Workshop

 

Our Annual Metropolitan Region Education and Women’s Committee’s Workshop is designed to bring our activists and leaders together for information sharing, skill-sharpening and educational workshops.

This year’s Workshop was recently held at the Villa Roma in Callicoon, NY, and featured workshops presented by a variety of our union’s professional staff and experts in their fields.

We were very proud to have CSEA Executive Vice President Mary Sullivan and Secretary Denise Berkley join us for the weekend.

Over 200 activists from around our Region attended the three-day workshop!

Lester reg 2 conf

 


 

Region 2 Retirees Sworn-in

 

Congratulations to the newly elected officers of the CSEA Region Retiree Local 910. Officers were sworn-in at recent retiree meeting by CSEA Statewide Secretary Denise Berkley. Find out who they are here.

Reg 2 retiree meeting