Dear Neighbor,
I am honored to represent you as a Member of the State Assembly. I am working hard to carry on the tradition of your former Assemblyman, Ivan Lafayette, who did such an outstanding job serving his constituents and making government work for the people.
Despite the economic crisis we are facing, I have worked hard to try to include in the new State budget funds for various services needed by our community. It is also important that we find the resources to continue to support the community-based organizations that are providing so much for residents and businesses in this area.
My staff and I are available to help you with problems and concerns relating to State government and community issues. Members of the staff speak several languages other than English: Spanish, Korean, Urdu and Hindi. Please do not hesitate to contact my office, Monday through Friday, 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM, if you need assistance. Information is available on a number of different programs, including pamphlets on computer safety, youth services, and senior citizen benefits, such as SCRIE (Senior Citizen Rent Increase Exemption). Also, for your convenience, a free legal clinic is available every other Tuesday from 6:00 – 8:00 PM, at the district office.
The 34th Assembly District contains strong, vibrant communities. Working together, we can face the challenges that lie ahead, and continue to improve the quality of life for everyone in our district.

Michael G. DenDekker
State Assemblyman
In Albany recently, Assemblyman DenDekker met with representatives from Queens Community House in Jackson Heights. The Assemblyman is shown here with Anna Dioguardi, Director of Community Organizing & Development, and some ESL students. Queens Community House offers ESL classes and other programs that assist struggling immigrants.

Assemblyman DenDekker is shown here presenting an Assembly Citation to Dr. Parveen Chopra, who received the Haywood Burns Memorial award at the 133rd Annual Meeting of the NYS Bar Association. Dr. Chopra is the founder of the Jackson Heights and Flushing Merchants Associations, and served as president of the Federation of Indian Associations.
Following are the capable staff members at Assemblyman DenDekker’s district office, ready to help with problems and concerns:
Maureen Allen
Chief of Staff

Joan Ragone
Albany Office Manager

Syed Ali Ameer
Community Liaison

Helen Ohw
Constituent Liaison

Manny Perez
Communications Coordinator

Ellen Raffaele
Community Liaison

Laura Rodriguez
Constituent Liaison

Seth Sahr, Esq.

Tara Snow, Esq.

Kevin Kleinbub
Albany Legislative Intern
Assembly Committee Memberships:
Assemblyman DenDekker is currently assigned to the following six Assembly Committees:

Committee on Aging

Committee on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse

Committee on Consumer Affairs and Protection

Committee on Governmental Employees

Committee on Transportation

Committee on Veterans’ Affairs
Assemblyman DenDekker is co-sponsoring a number of pieces of legislation that will alleviate problems for community residents and protect them from harm. Following are a few of the Assembly bills for which he is a co-sponsor:
  • Legislation to Protect Elderly from Abuse,
  • Bill A5680, would require caretakers of the elderly to report suspected abuse to an appropriate State agency. The Office of Children & Family Services has been charged with the responsibility for investigating alleged elder abuse, and providing any necessary protective services. This legislation would also establish a statewide central registry for elder abuse cases.
  • Two Bills Increasing Unemployment Insurance Benefits:
  • Bill A4920 increases the amount of unemployment benefits, and also provides unemployment insurance for employees who must leave work due to domestic violence. Bill A4921 increases the maximum benefit rate for unemployment insurance.

  • Computer Spyware Protection Act:
  • This legislation, Bill A6419, prohibits the deceptive installation and use of computer software that collects personally identifiable information. The Attorney General would be authorized to bring a civil action against anyone in violation – damages could range from $1,000 to one million dollars.
  • Harsher Penalties for Crimes Against Delivery Persons:
  • Many delivery persons have been the targets of violent crimes. Often, food orders are used to lure these delivery people to locations where they are then assaulted. This bill, number A6289, would establish harsher penalties for attacking food delivery persons.
Assemblyman DenDekker recently attended the annual Legislative Brunch at Elmhurst Hospital. The purpose of this event was not only to discuss threatened budget reductions, but also to inform everyone about programs and services offered at the hospital.

Pictured here, from left to right, are: Councilwoman Helen Sears; Elmhurst Hospital Center Executive Director Chris Constantino; Dr. Jasmin Moshirpur, Mt. Sinai Regional Medical Director, Queens Health Network; Elaine Berg, President & CEO, New York Organ Donor Network; Eartha Washington, Chair, Elmhurst Hospital Community Advisory Board; Queens Borough President Helen Marshall; Assemblyman DenDekker; and Dr. Ann Sullivan, Executive Vice President, Queens Health Network.
Assemblyman DenDekker Sponsors
Credit Card Reform Bills
Assemblyman DenDekker has authored two new credit card reform bills to stop banks from systematically charging late fees and increased interest rates to customers making credit card payments. Banks schedule credit card payment due dates on Saturdays, Sundays and holidays, then process the payments on the next business day, so they can charge a late fee. Banks will also raise the interest rate on any special balance transfer rates the customer may have had.
Assemblyman DenDekker is the prime sponsor of Bill
A6960, which would prohibit banks from setting credit card payment due dates on Saturdays, Sundays, or Federal or State holidays. He is also the prime sponsor of A6961, a bill prohibiting banks from charging late fees or increased interest rates until at least 48 hours after the scheduled due date.
Through passage of this legislation, Assemblyman DenDekker hopes to protect consumers from these predatory lending practices on the part of banks.
Legislation Sponsored by DenDekker Would
Exempt Voluntary Ambulance Services from Paying Tolls
Assemblyman DenDekker is the prime sponsor of legislation, bill A6278, that would exempt registered volunteer ambulance corps and rescue squads from paying the tolls on any highway, bridge or tunnel on the New York State Thruway. Many areas of the State without municipal ambulance services depend on volunteer ambulances, which often have to transport an injured or sick person over a considerable distance. These volunteer ambulance corps must do fundraising to buy rescue equipment and medical supplies and to buy and maintain vehicles. If they are exempt from paying tolls, the money saved can be used for improving their equipment and providing better services to the public.
Assemblyman DenDekker marched in the big, festive Lunar New Year Parade in Flushing. Shown here (from left to right) are Lee You Sub and Youngpal Sunwoo, both of the Korean-American Association of Queens, Assemblyman DenDekker, Helen Ohw of the Assemblyman’s staff, and Dorothy Phelan, Community Leader.

At a community meeting at Southridge, the question came up of who approved the recent ConEd rate increase. It’s the New York State Public Service Commission, and contact information is included below, should you wish to contact them. This Commission governs the New York State Department of Public Service, which is supposed to ensure that residents and businesses have safe and reliable access to electric, gas, steam, water, cable and telecommunication services, at reasonable rates.

The NYS Public Service Commission has been bipartisan by law since 1970, and consists of up to five members, each appointed by the Governor (who also designates the chairperson) and confirmed by the State Senate for a six-year term. Currently, the members of the Public Service Commission are as follows:
Garry A. Brown - about to be confirmed by State Senate for term running through February 1, 2015 - also Chair of the NYS Board on Electric Generation Siting & the Environment
Patricia L. Acampora - about to be confirmed by State Senate for term running through February 1, 2015
Maureen F. Harris, Esq. – term runs through February 1, 2012
Robert E. Curry, Jr. – term runs through February 1, 2012
James L. Larocca – term runs through February 1, 2012 - previously served as Chair of the Long Island Power Authority (LIPA)

Following is the contact information:
NYS Public Service Commission
3 Empire State Plaza Albany, NY 12223 (518) 473-4544