Chair, Tourism, Parks, Arts and Sports Development Committee
Assemblywoman Margaret Markey was first elected to the New York State Assembly in November of 1998 as the representative of the 30th Assembly District. The 30th Assembly District is comprised of the Queens neighborhoods of Maspeth, Woodside and parts of Long Island City, Middle Village, Astoria and Sunnyside. Assemblywoman Markey has worked to improve and strengthen the quality of life in Queens for nearly twenty-five years. As a community activist, she served as a member of Community Boards Two and Five and is the founder of Maspeth Town Hall, Inc., a community center that serves over 1000 families. Mrs. Markey began her public service career as the Assistant Director of Economic Development for former Queens Borough President Claire Shulman, and then became Director of Marketing & Tourism for the borough. In that capacity Mrs. Markey was responsible for creating many of the marketing materials that are still currently used to promote the tourism industry in Queens. In Albany, Assemblywoman Markey has focused on legislation to protect consumers and improve the quality of life for Queens residents and all New Yorkers. Now, as Chair of the Assembly Standing Committee on Tourism, Parks, Arts and Sports Development she is a leading advocate for the state’s marvelous range of physical and natural wonders, from our parks, recreational and historic sites to cultural and entertainment attractions. The tourism industry is a vital economic engine for the state, the fifth largest sector of New York’s economy which generated nearly $50 billion in direct spending in 2010. Assemblywoman Markey’s highest priority for the committee is to do everything possible to help it grow in the coming years, while balancing the expenditure of the state’s tourist-promotion spending between upstate and downstate regions. Funding increases for education, healthcare and senior services have been some of Assemblywoman Markey’s top priorities in Albany and she has been fully committed to improving New York’s economy, healthcare, education and affordable housing through her work in the Assembly. Early in her tenure, Assemblywoman Markey led the Legislature in fighting for tougher standards in the farm and food industry to protect against BSE also known as ‘mad cow disease’ and it’s human forms. The Assembly Speaker appointed her Chair of the Sub-Committee on Child Product Safety in the following term. In this position she was able to continue her work in fighting for stronger consumer protections to safeguard New York’s children. In 2005, Assemblywoman Markey won enactment of a law that bans the sale of box cutters to minors statewide. The same year Assemblywoman Markey also first introduced important legislation concerning child sexual abuse. That bill, the Child Victims’ Act of New York, would extend the statute of limitations for child sexual abuse crimes by five years to provide additional time for victims to get justice for the wrongs done against them. It would also completely suspend the civil statutes of limitations for one year to provide justice for victims who have been time-barred, and expose pedophiles who continue to prey on youngsters. The legislation has been overwhelmingly adopted by the Assembly four times but has not yet moved forward in the State Senate. In addition to her role as Chair of the Tourism, Parks, Arts and Sports Development Committee, Assemblywoman Markey is also a sitting member of the Government Operations, Labor, Racing & Wagering, Consumer Affairs & Protection Committees. Mrs. Markey is a member of the Legislative Women’s Caucus and is past President of the New York State American Irish Legislators Society. She is a graduate of the Berkeley Business School and a member of the Maspeth Kiwanis. Assemblywoman Markey has received awards in recognition of her work from the New York Irish Center; New York City Department of Parks; American Irish Legislators Society; New York State Court Clerks Association; United Federation of Teachers; Police & Fire Line of Duty Widows of New York City; Samaritan Village; Maspeth SelfHelp; Woodside on the Move, SNAP, and others. Assemblywoman Markey is married to State Supreme Court Justice Charles Markey. Mr. & Mrs. Markey live in Maspeth and are the proud parents of Charles, John and Margaret.