NEW CITY, N.Y. -- State Assemblyman Kenneth Zebrowski delivers the following message:
As the 2016 legislative session is now under way and the Legislature begins with our budget negotiations, I wanted to send out a note with some updates.
Earlier this month, Governor (Andrew) Cuomo delivered his State of the State and Budget address.
He put forth a comprehensive proposal that makes historic investments in the environment, commitments to improving our wastewater infrastructure, and establishes strong ethics proposals including closing campaign finance loopholes.
Protecting STAR & Eliminating GEA : two of my biggest priorities in this budget will be making sure that the Legislature commits to eliminating the Gap Elimination Adjustment during this session and preserving STAR benefits.
Gov. Cuomo has proposed to freeze STAR benefits moving forward, something that would cost taxpayers hundreds of millions of dollars over the next several years.
This is something I was successful in fighting against in last year’s budget, and I have already begun to organize a coalition of legislators with the Assembly Chair of the Real Property Tax Committee, Sandy Galef.
Bringing Full Day Kindergarten to the entire state: There are just nine districts in the state that only provide half day programs and our proposal would incentivize the transition to a full day program, making New York the 13th state in the nation to have Universal Full Day K.
The legislation would expand the current Full Day K incentive program from a one year grant to a five year program to provide school districts with increased funding and the flexibility to convert to a full day program.
Legislation for the students of East Ramapo: Getting legislation passed for the students of East Ramapo remains one of my top legislative priorities this session.
Following the Monitoring Team’s presentation to the Board of Regents in December, I have been meeting with parents, administrators, and the State Education Department to make sure I receive all their input.
Among the 19 recommendations, the monitors reiterated the need for oversight with a monitor that has veto power to be on the ground and in the district on a daily basis.
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