Magnarelli: Governor’s Vetoes Hurt Central New York

Assemblyman Bill Magnarelli (D-Syracuse) announced that the governor has vetoed select parts of the Legislature’s 2006-07 bipartisan state budget. His vetoes affects local jobs, compromises our children’s health and our neighborhoods directly.

“The Assembly and Senate worked together in open conference committees to agree upon a fair and on-time budget for all New Yorker,” Magnarelli said. “Now the governor is line by line vetoing sections that affect all New Yorkers, and several that have a direct impact on Central New York children and families. The governor’s vetoes don’t just cut the budget, they cut jobs, health care and effect our lives.”

Effecting Local Jobs

The governor vetoed extending the $100-million-a-year Power for Jobs program through Dec. 31, 2007. The Power for Jobs program provides low-cost power to manufacturers and non-profits. This program has helped create and retain thousands of jobs in Central New York.

“This is exactly the kind of aid businesses need to weather the current surge in energy prices,” said Magnarelli. “Further showing his neglect of small businesses, the governor cut $500,000 for the Entrepreneurial Assistance Program. The sole purpose of this program was to encourage the small businesses that provide 8 out of 10 new jobs, and it helps minority and women owned business enterprises with training and business skills.”

Compromising our Children’s Health

The governor vetoed over $3.3 million in funding for school based health centers. Students from Dr. King Elementary and Shea Middle School traveled to Albany to tell Assemblyman Magnarelli how these health centers have made a difference in their lives. From dental care to counseling services these centers make a real difference in children’s’ lives.

The Legislature agreed to funding that would help establish regional children’s environmental health centers across the state. Sadly, the governor closed the door on our children’s health care by vetoing the $200,000 in vital funding for these health centers from the budget.

“This move by the governor is another example of his failure to meet the needs of New York’s children and ensure their well-being,’ said Magnarelli. “These health centers are vital to the lives of the young people of Central New York. We must do all we can to make sure they stay available to those who need there services.”

Effecting our Neighborhoods

Also vetoed was over $7 million in funding that would be used for rural and neighborhood preservation. Home Headquarters, Housing Visions, Syracuse United Neighbors, Northeast Hawley Development Association have all used this money to help repair homes, renovate homes and sell to low-income people for low prices, help people stay in their homes, and help first-time home buyers get loans.

Another veto was directed at funding for transitional housing. ARISE and other local advocacy groups for the disable support this pilot program to help children transition to independent living.

Anti-gang and anti-violence efforts were also impacted by vetoes. This funding, via ‘Byrne grants’ have been successfully used at Henninger and Cocoran High Schools. Funding for Liberty Partnerships Program was also vetoed. This program helps at-risk youth graduate from high school and pursue post-secondary education. LeMoyne College, Onondaga Community College and Syracuse University all run programs in the city schools through Liberty.

“The governor is so concerned about his political future on the national stage, he is over looking what needs to be done in our own front yard,” said Magnarelli. “We can not let his political ambitions affect our jobs, our neighborhoods and most importantly our children. I am ready to override the governor’s vetoes. In the next few weeks I’m going to meet with my colleagues in the Assembly and Senate to take a united stand for a budget that New Yorkers deserve.”