This past week was an important one for the New York State Legislature and the citizens and taxpayers we represent. Gov. Pataki unveiled his $110.7 billion 2006-07 budget, and in the coming months I will be working to ensure that the budget's final version is one that truly serves all New Yorkers, especially in the areas of education and economic development. I am also committed to an on-time passage of the budget for the second year in a row.
On the legislative front, the Assembly and Senate reached an agreement, which I co-sponsored, on the strengthening of Megan's Law, which requires all sex offenders to register with the state. Because this important statute took effect in 1996 and was set to expire after 10 years, hundreds of predators were eligible to be dropped from the registry in 2006. To prevent this, the Legislature updated Megan's Law so that low-risk offenders must register for 20 years instead of 10. Moderate-risk offenders register for life, although they may petition for removal after 30 years. But individuals who pose the highest risk of recidivism will remain on the registry for life with no possibility of removal. Also, the Assembly and Senate continue to work toward an agreement on civil confinement for sex offenders who represent an on-going threat even after release from prison. Read about the changes to Megan's Law by using the links below.
Protecting our most vulnerable citizens, our children, from sexual predators is an issue that rises above partisan politics, and I'm proud of the action we've taken to achieve that goal. Last year, the Legislature acted in similar fashion by passing a bill I authored, clearing the way for criminal background checks of prospective nursing home and home health care employees.
Speaker Silver Announces Megan's Law Agreement
$500,000 for Hillside Children's Center
Closer to home, I'm pleased to announce $500,000 in state funding for a major renovation project at Hillside Children's Center's Monroe Avenue campus. This is an organization that has served upstate New York's families and children with compassion and distinction since 1837, and CEO Dennis Richardson and his staff continue that tradition into the 21st century. It is an honor to contribute to Hillside's great legacy.
About NYS Assemblyman Joseph D. Morelle
Since 1990, Assemblyman Joseph D. Morelle has represented the 132nd Assembly District, which includes portions of the city of Rochester and the Monroe County suburbs of Irondequoit and Brighton. During his tenure in the NYS Legislature, Joe has made economic development and expanding employment opportunities his top priority.