First of all, I want to thank the community for electing me to serve another term as the representative of the 83rd Assembly District. As the Holiday Season approaches, I wanted to send an update to the community on what has occured recently in the State and Community.
Since the last newsletter, the Governor was unwilling to allow local funding in this year’s budget and vetoed previous appropriations. These cuts have hurt our community in countless ways. Critical programs that provide services our community relies upon, like meals for the elderly, after school programs for children and job/business training are all going to be terminated.
As 2010 draws to an end, I wanted to inform you of the progress we have made to meet the needs of the people of New York State and some of the obstacles we face to meeting the needs of our community. I want to encourage the community to voice its support to the incoming governor for funding of local projects. As always, if there is any way that I can be of assistance to you, please do not hesitate to contact me. My office is here to serve you.
With Love and Hope,
Carl E. Heastie
Member of Assembly
Baychester/Edenwald Senior Center - Financial assistance provides for meals for the elder community.
Bridgefield Civic League, Inc. - Financial assistance provides materials and supplies for summer day camp activities.
St. Luke’s Food Program - Financial assistance provides transportation and supplies to offer food to the local community.
Bronx Youth Uptown Developers Coalition - Financial assistance provides materials to hold an annual basketball program. The UDC provides an SAT prep course and pre-college orientation and guidance.
East 233rd Street Senior Center - Financial assistance provides for materials for Senior Program and activities.
47th Precinct Community Council - Funds will be used to purchase supplies for a project that will create safer streets and neighborhoods, by utilizing volunteers to patrol the community and assist the local authorities with logistics.
NAACP (Williamsbridge Branch) - Financial assistance provides for Math and Science materials for tutorial program.
Tilden Towers Senior Center - Financial assistance to provide a project director for recreation activities and health/educational seminars.
YW Conservatory of the Art - Funds will be used to purchase materials/supplies and supplemental instruction for the community dance program. This program offers an opportunity for young adults to receive instruction in the arts of dance and performance.
Mind Builders Creative Arts Center - Funds will be used to purchase materials and supplies for the Community Folk Culture Program. This program offers an opportunity for young adults to have hands-on experience with shared cultural arts and activities while documenting and archiving this heritage.
Unity Neighborhood Center, Inc. - Funds will be used to purchase materials and supplies to expand services in P.S. 87 and P.S. 21. This program provides instruction in dance, drawing, and painting.
Theatre International, Inc. - Funds will be used to provide an after school theatre arts program. The funds from this grant will be used for the purchase of materials to run this program from Richard R. Green Middle School.
New York Public Library - Funds will be used to purchase books for the Eastchester, Edenwald, and Wakefield Branch Libraries.
Gun Hill Youth Football and Cheerleading Program - Funds will be used to purchase materials and supplies to conduct football and cheerleading youth program.
The Bronx YMCA will not continue “The Virtual Y Program” at P.S. 68 as the result of its omission in the State budget at the insistence of Governor David Paterson. The governor refuses to fund the Virtual Y Program in spite of the work by Assemblyman Carl E. Heastie to secure funding for this program in previous budgets and his continued advocacy for the program to be included in this years budget. This program was designed to assist New York City public school children by practicing literacy skills to reinforce what is taught during the school day. The Virtual Y Program offered an enriched after school program consisting of a variety of academic, recreational and values based activities, all infused with experiences that enhanced literacy. Unfortunately all of these services will not be available as the result of this veto.
As the result of Governor David Paterson’s budget cuts The Doe Fund’s “Ready Willing & Able Program” will no longer be active on White Plains and Gun Hill roads. The busy commercial corridor of White Plains Road between Gun Hill Road and East 236th Street was litter free and clean through the hard work of the people of the Doe Fund’s “Ready, Willing and Able” initiative. this highly successful cleaning service will no longer be available with the loss of funding due to the Governor’s insistence on removing line item funding from the state budget.
The state assembly passed the Wage Theft Prevention Act which was authored by Assemblyman Carl Heastie. This legislation establishes the Wage Theft Prevention Act to protect workers from wage and hour abuses. The bill would increase penalties for wage underpayments and for the failure of an employer to notify his or her employees of their wage rates and other rights. In addition, this bill would provide anti-retaliatory protections to workers and increased enforcement tools for the Department of Labor. (A.11726; Passed Assembly)
This legislation recognizes the damaging impacts of the Executive’s deep reductions to school aid in the budget and restores $600 million in education funding. This bill would help provide property tax relief and ensure that schools can avoid layoffs and cuts to vital programs. (A.9703-C / S.6603-B; Veto Line; 15)
“I would like to recognize the work of Pathmark grocery stores and Rain Boston Secor as they help local families enjoy the spirit of the Holiday season,” said Assemblyman Heastie. “This is just another example of how New Yorkers share the holidays with each other,” stated Assemblyman Heastie.
Assemblyman Heastie, with the help of the Food Industry Alliance, solicited the donation and provided the coordination of these events.
Expand Definition of Sexual Contact Expands the definition of sexual contact to cover other conduct of an illegal, sexual nature. (A.9938-A / S.7702-A; Chapter 193)
Expands Sentencing for Hate Crime Defendants Establishes greater sentencing alternatives for defendants convicted of hate crimes. (A.9220-A / S.7575; Chapter 158)
Clarify Sentences Under Drug Law Reform Act Clarifies the availability of a sentence of parole supervision under the Drug Law Reform Act enacted in 2009. (A.11051 / S.2405; Chapter 121)
Protect Privacy of Innocent Individuals Prohibits the electronic recording of personal identifying information of a person who law enforcement officials have stopped, questioned or frisked when no further legal action has been taken against the individual. (A.11177-A / S.7945-A; Chapter 176)
Allows Prosecution of Hate Crimes Under Civil Law Establishes a civil penalty and liability for civil damages for bias-related “hate crimes.” (A.529 / S.5923; Chapter 227)
MINORITY AND WOMEN BUSINESS ENTERPRISES (MWBE)
State Agency MWBE Buying Guidelines Expanded Increases discretionary buying thresholds for state agencies for Minority Women Business Enterprises and small business contracts from $100,000 to $200,000. (A.11525 / S.8312; Chapter 173)
MWBE Procurement Goals Established Reforms Executive Law Article 15-A’s provisions regarding minority women owned business enterprises in state purchasing. The bill would create meaningful statistical goals for such purchasing. It also would establish greater accountability for state agencies who fail to meet such goals. (A.11527 / S.8314; Chapter 175)
Expanding Opportunities for Minority and Women Business Enterprises (MWBE) Requires officials who appoint members of public authorities to consider diversity when making appointments. The bill also requires that the guidelines adopted by a public authority to govern its procurements include a waiver of any competitive bid requirement from small businesses or MWBEs for purchases of recycled or remanufactured goods that are not more than $200,000. (A.11526 / S.8313; Chapter 174)
Minority and Women Owned Business Enterprises (MWBE) Creates the New York State Emerging Manager and MWBE Financial Services Strategy to increase the inclusion of MWBEs in certain investment and financial matters of New York State. This legislation authorizes and encourages New York’s Common Retirement Fund, State Insurance Fund, Deferred Compensation and Teachers’ Retirement System to adopt the strategy. (A.9976-C / S.6888-C; Chapter 171)
Keep Rents Affordable Halts the trend of runaway rents in the City of New York by repealing vacancy decontrol laws that permit landlords to remove apartments from regulation by charging rents at or above $2,000 per month. (A.2005; Passed Assembly / S.2237-A; Housing, Construction and Community Development)
Tenant Membership on NYCHA Governing Board Adds one tenant member to the governing board of the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA). The legislation also would establish procedures for board member appointments and removals. (A.4687 / S.1104; Chapter 486) (A.11557 / S.8350; Chapter 531)
Bans Housing Discrimination Against Domestic Violence Victims Prohibits a landlord from evicting a domestic violence victim from a rent-regulated apartment because the victim did not live in the unit as his or her primary residence. (A.2365-A / S.3317-A; Chapter 422)
Domestic Workers Bill of Rights Provides basic and necessary rights to domestic workers who have historically been excluded from the protections of the Labor Law. Under the bill, such workers would receive one day of rest each week and be paid overtime. The legislation also would provide disability coverage and protections from discrimination and sexual harassment. In addition, the measure would require domestic workers to receive three personal days per year once they have worked with the same employer for one year. (A.1470-B / S.2311-E; Chapter 481)
Prevailing Wage for Service Workers Requires the payment of prevailing wages to service workers employed by public utility companies and third parties that provide service work for public agencies. The bill also would increase penalties to employers for violations of the law’s wage and record keeping requirements involving employees performing service work and subject to the prevailing wage. (A.10257-D / S.8397-A; Passed both houses)
Child Care Providers Right to Organize Establishes in the law the existing Executive Order which allows child care providers who perform work related to state contracts to select representatives for collective bargaining purposes. (A.10764 / S.7451; Chapter 540)
Protect Nurses from Violence Increases the penalties for assaulting nursing professionals while in the performance of their duties. (A.3103-A / S.401-A; Chapter 318)
Early Retirement Incentive Establishes a temporary retirement incentive program for certain state employees and other public employees to assist in streamlining the workforce while also achieving cost savings. This applies to eligible members of the New York State and Local Employees Retirement System; New York City Employees Retirement System; New York State Teachers Retirement System; New York City Teachers Retirement System; and New York City Board of Education Retirement System. (A.11144 / S.7909; Chapter 105)
CHILDREN AND FAMILIES
Child Day Care Closure Notification Requires the City of New York to provide six months notice to providers and parents before closing a child day care, except where the city seeks to close a center for reasons of public safety, criminal behavior by the provider, breach of contract, or suspension or revocation of the center’s license for non-economic reasons. (A.3065-E / S.3601-D; Chapter 462)
Family Day Care Modifies the staff to child ratio permitted in group family day care homes. The bill also authorizes the Office of Children and Family Services to impose a penalty on providers who commit serious offenses, whether or not the provider subsequently rectifies the violation. The measure also allows a license to remain valid for four years, rather than two years for childcare providers who are in compliance with state regulations. (A.8827-A / S.3895-B; Chapter 117)