What would make a Senator, who previously fully supported the restoration and re-use of the Armory, suddenly take part in a backhanded, rush through, get it done before the public finds out, type of legislation? Pro Armory one minute, tear it down the next. Even Forest City has admitted the Armory can be utilized as Echo Bay is developed. Senator Klein, it is my opinion that you have become spineless in your ability to be a leader, no longer deserving of the peoples trust. The voting booth will show that loss of trust. Cowardly and backhandedly, you chose to turn on you constituents who have previously supported you. Are you taking campaign money from Forest City or the Ratners like Mayor Bramson did What price was it worth to sell out the trust of the people? Stop it Senator and act like an adult, Senator and citizen. You haven't had one single discussion about the merits of saving the Armory, so how could you possibly make an informed decision, unless of course, you are being co-opted by money or undue influence. Goodbye Senator, your carreer is over. You want proof of the 2 faces? Here you go. http://www.newrochelletalk.com/node/2145Read more
As co-chairperson of the Save Our Armory Committee I and our secretary Lorraine Pierce sat in Senator Klein’s office to garner his support to save the New Rochelle Armory. Without hesitation or a second thought, Senator Klein pledged his wholehearted support and a few days later memorialized his support in a letter dated October 25, 2006. Senator Klein states; “I am writing this letter in support of your group’s effort to save the New Rochelle Armory. The Armory is a site of significant historical importance to the City of New Rochelle and should be preserved”. Now, less than four years later, Senator Klein has stabbed his New Rochelle constituents in the back by co-sponsoring a bill with Senator Suzi Oppenheimer (S08307) which would allow Mayor Bramson “to sell, alienate and convey waterfront real property”. The Armory is not mentioned by name but if you read the entire bill the coordinates include the Armory. This legislation comes on the same day (6/22) of the special election where Sheila Marcotte, a republican, decisively defeated Greg Varian, a democrat, for Vito Pinto’s vacant county legislator seat.Read more
With the state government deadlocked in a budget battle as the legislative calendar draws to a close, Mayor Noam Bramson is working with the four state representatives of New Rochelle in Albany to sneak through last minute legislation authorizing the City of New Rochelle to tear down the Naval Armory in New Rochelle.
State Senator Jeff Klein and State Senator Suzi Oppenheimer have co-sponsored bill S8307 in the New York Senate. State Assembly Representative Amy Paulin and State Assembly Representative George Latimer sponsored bill A11554. The bills are identical and are summarized on the New York State Assembly web site as follows:
Authorizes the city of New Rochelle to sell, alienate and convey waterfront real property. [NOTE: The full bill is published below]
The Mayor plans to call a special meeting of the City Council this week to pass a resolution acting on the two bills, if passed, to immediately authorize the imminent destruction of the Armory, sources say.Read more
WHITE PLAINS – Citing an ongoing federal investigation into the convoluted and secretive organizational structure and campaign practices of the Working Families Party (WFP), state Senate candidate Bob Cohen (R, I, C – 37th District) today called on incumbent Senator Oppenheimer to reject the Party’s endorsement. Cohen also said that the WFP’s big spending, anti-taxpayer agenda would do further damage to the weakened economy and a state government on the brink of financial collapse.
“If Senator Oppenheimer has any interest in reforming Albany and working toward lasting solutions to solve the state’s fiscal crisis, the first thing she needs to do is reject the endorsement of the Working Families Party,” said Cohen, who noted that the Senator has consistently run with the WFP endorsement in the past. “The Party is clearly standing in the way of reform and its radical, costly agenda would only add to the financial burdens already facing overtaxed New Yorkers.”Read more
Oppenheimer Co-sponsored Bill Now Awaits Governor’s Approval
The New York State Legislature passed legislation protecting families and children affected by autism spectrum disorders from exorbitant healthcare costs. Senator Suzi Oppenheimer (D-Mamaroneck) was a key co-sponsor of the legislation (S7000B), which passed the Senate on June 9th, with unanimous, bipartisan support. Earlier this week, the Assembly passed the bill, which will now be sent to the Governor for his approval.
The bill would amend existing insurance and public health laws to require health insurance providers to cover the screening, diagnosis, and treatment of autism spectrum disorders. It mandates that policies provide coverage for autistic individuals throughout their lifetimes with no financial cap. The bill also provides clarity to consumers and insurers as to the extent of medical coverage. The State Commissioner of Health, in consultation with the Superintendent of Insurance and the Commissioners of Mental Health, Mental Retardation and Developmental Disabilities, would be responsible for identifying covered treatment and therapy options.Read more
SENATOR OPPENHEIMER JOINS WITH WESTCHESTER LIBRARY SYSTEM AND LOCAL LIBRARY DIRECTORS TO CALL FOR RESTORATION OF LIBRARY FUNDING IN NYS FY 2010-11 BUDGET
Senator Suzi Oppenheimer (D-Mamaroneck) today joined with representatives of the Westchester Library System (WLS) and local library directors to call for the restoration of library funding in the NYS FY 2010-11 budget.
The Governor’s proposed Executive Budget would cut state library funding to $84.5 million, a reduction of approximately $2.5 million over 2009-10 budget levels. If enacted, this would result in an $18 million reduction in state funding over the past three years and mark the fifth time that library funding has been cut over the same period. At Senator Oppenheimer’s insistence, the Senate budget resolution, adopted in March 2010, rejects the Governor’s proposal and would restore library funding to existing levels. But negotiations over the final budget are ongoing and injurious cuts to public libraries remain possible.Read more
WHITE PLAINS - State Senate candidate Bob Cohen (R, I, C - 37th District) today condemned legislation passed by the Senate last week that threatens the supply of home heating oil and could increase costs by as much as $.90 per gallon in the event of a severe winter. Cohen called the measure another blow to Westchester families already suffering from out-of-control property taxes.
"With all of the attention focused on the Legislature's inability to negotiate a budget, it is easy to forget about the other lapses in common sense coming from Albany," said Cohen. "This one is inexcusable. People are having a hard enough time making ends meet. The last thing the Senate should be doing is finding ways to increase the cost of living."
The legislation (S.1145-C) would limit the sulfur content of heating oil to 15 parts per million by July 1, 2012. Engineering evaluations show that it will take a minimum of four years for refineries to have the proper infrastructure and processes in place to comply with the new mandate. A recent study found that the resulting shortage could lead to increases in costs of $.20 - $.30 per gallon in a mild winter, and as much as $.60 - $.90 per gallon in a severe winter. The added costs to New York home heating oil users ranges from $1 billion to $3 billion per winter and averages $600 per family.Read more
Talk of the Sound has obtained a copy of an IDA Audit Report of the New Rochelle IDA (NRIDA) which is expected to be released by the Office of the New York State Comptroller (OSC) next month. The document is meant to be public, has been circulated within City Hall but is not on the agenda for the IDA meeting scheduled tomorrow. A brief review of the summary shows why the IDA would prefer to kick the report down the road into the summer months when they hope less people will notice -- it is a devastating report which confirms what many critics have long contended about an IDA with no defined process for approving projects, no effort to monitor ongoing projects and a generally sloppy, make-it-up-as-you-go approach while doling out tens of millions of dollars in bonds, tax incentives and other goodies to politically-connected developers with no particular concern over whether the projects deliver upon promised results.Read more