Michael Cusick

Staten Island
A Better Place To Live

Dear Neighbor,

The recent legislative session was a successful one. The Assembly made steady progress, helping to pass an on-time budget and ushering in new laws that invest in New York’s education system, stimulate economic development and improve New Yorkers’ quality of life.

Over the past year, we made significant headway in regaining New York’s status as a great place to live, work and raise families. I will continue to tackle more important issues to make Staten Island an even better place for our families to live.

I encourage Staten Island residents to contact me about what is on your minds so that I can do the job I was elected to do – make sure your voices are heard in Albany. Don’t hesitate to call my office at 370-1384 or e-mail me at with any questions, ideas or concerns you may have. I look forward to hearing from you.

Michael J. Cusick
Member of Assembly

Assemblyman Michael Cusick
delivers for working families


Fighting for Staten Island students

Assemblyman Cusick understands that by investing in education we are investing in our children’s future – allowing them to succeed in an ever-changing global economy. That’s why he fought to secure much-needed funding for New York’s education system.

With the largest education investment in New York State history, New York City schools will receive $714 million more than last year – a 10 percent increase.

Reducing class sizes in NYC schools

In addition to providing crucial funding, Assemblyman Cusick also worked to reduce class sizes in our overcrowded New York City schools.

The 2007 budget requires New York City to prepare a Contract for Excellence that must include a plan to reduce average class sizes within five years in the specified grade ranges and class size reductions for low-performing and overcrowded schools.

Comparing the average class size in New York City to classes in the rest of the state reveals an overwhelming disparity – a disparity that must end.

Expanding early education

The budget provides $60.3 million more for New York City schools to advance the Assembly’s plan to provide statewide universal pre-K and ensure that every 4-year-old in the state has the opportunity to get a head start on school.

The budget also provides $22.5 million in transitional aid that will go to public schools that lose students to charter schools. This aid will help funnel needed resources into our public schools to help ensure a quality education for all our children.

Helping local private and parochial schools

This year the Assembly was successful in providing local and parochial schools with $39 million more than the governor’s proposed budget – helping to defray educational expenditures. The budget also provides additional computer hardware aid to schools – increasing the rate from $19.25 to $24.20 per student and, for the first time, providing it to non-public schools.

Standing up for Staten Island families

This year, Assemblyman Cusick:

  • Helped pass a law repealing the city’s 4 percent sales tax on clothing and footwear over $110 – making shopping for clothes and shoes more affordable for Staten Island families (Ch. 82 of 2007)

  • Fought for STAR rebates for eligible Staten Island homeowners

    • The maximum rebate for eligible homeowners will be $127, the minimum $64

    • For New York City seniors who qualify for Enhanced STAR, the average savings will be an additional $95

  • Helped increase the NYC Star Personal Income Tax Credit by $60 to $290 for married taxpayers who file joint returns and by $30 to $145 for single taxpayers and heads-of-households

  • Fought for legislation that creates an independent judicial district in Richmond County to give Staten Island its rightful representation within the city (A.2688). (This legislation passed both the Assembly and Senate and awaits action by the governor.)

Cusick law recognizes and honors Merchant Marines

Recently, the governor signed into law Assemblyman Cusick’s legislation providing a one-time $250 war bonus to members of the Merchant Marines who served in World War II or to their unmarried surviving spouses (Ch. 325 of 2007).

This law was created because the time frame for Merchant Marines to apply for their one-time bonus expired in 1965 and many veterans did not apply in time – which made them ineligible to collect the bonuses that they are rightfully entitled to.

For more information about bonuses for Merchant Marines who served in WWII, contact the New York State Division of Veteran Affairs at 1-888-VETSNYS or contact Cusick’s district office at 370-1384.

“Merchant Marines deserve their long-overdue bonuses and recognition for the honorable service they gave to our country during World War II.”

– Assemblyman Michael Cusick

Governor signs Cusick law to end handicapped parking permit abuse

Assemblyman Cusick, Chair of the Handicapped Parking Task Force on Staten Island, worked with the NYPD, the Department of Transportation, the Staten Island Chamber of Commerce, community leaders and disabled individuals to craft legislation ensuring that handicapped parking permits were being used by the person to whom the permit had been issued.

The new law (Ch. 298 of 2007) will give disabled individuals the consideration and respect they deserve by allowing law enforcement officials to determine whether or not the handicapped parking permits are being used appropriately, which will help discourage those who would knowingly violate the law.

Assemblyman Michael J. Cusick Assemblyman
Michael J. Cusick
1911 Richmond Avenue
Staten Island, NY 10314
(718) 370-1384