3520 Nostrand Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11229
Helene E. Weinstein
Making a Difference in Brooklyn and Albany

August 2006

A Special Report to the Residents of the 41st District

Dear Neighbor,

The 2006 legislative session signals a positive direction for New York. As a Senior Member of the Legislature and Chair of the Judiciary Committee I served on several of the budget and legislative conference committees that helped to craft this year’s State budget and legislative accomplishments. This report highlights laws enacted to enhance safety, combat Identity theft and provide tax relief.

To protect the safety of New Yorkers, we eliminated the criminal statute of limitations on rape, expanded New York’s criminal DNA database, strengthened Megan’s Law and passed several consumer protection laws to fight identity theft.

To address the tax burden New York families face, we eliminated the state sales tax on clothing under $110, created a $330 child tax credit, ended the marriage penalty tax, capped sales tax on gasoline and home heating fuels, increased the STAR personal income tax credit and instituted a STAR property tax rebate.

To help curb the influence of special interests, the Assembly passed sweeping campaign finance reform and a ban on most gifts from lobbyists to government officials. It is our hope that the Senate will take action on these reform measures to help restore the public’s trust in their government.



Nieuw Amersfort Civic Association
During a recent visit to the Nieuw Amersfort Civic Association, Assemblywoman Helene Weinstein informed members about the numerous money saving income tax credits and property tax rebates the State Legislature enacted this year.
The Legislature eliminated the state sales tax on clothing and shoes under $110, created a maximum $330 per child tax credit, ended the marriage penalty tax and capped the sales tax on gas and residential energy. Homeowners will receive property tax rebate checks this fall and everyone will get a bigger STAR personal income tax credit.


The STAR personal income tax credit (City of New York School Tax Credit) was increased to $115 for single filers and $230 for joint filers - bringing total STAR savings for New York City residents to $1.1 billion annually.


NYC property owners who participate in STAR, (the property tax savings program) will receive rebate checks equal to 30% of their 2005-2006 STAR Benefit. The Legislature also enacted a Cost-of-Living-Adjustment (COLA) for Enhanced STAR recipients, which will save seniors an additional $72 million statewide.

NYC STAR Personal Income Tax Credit Increase
Tax Filing Status Current Tax Credit Your New Tax Credit
Single $62.50 $115
Married filing jointly $125 $230
Enhanced STAR Benefit After COLA
Senior Citizen Enhanced Star COLA Increase Current Exemption $340*
New Exemption $387*
STAR Property Tax Rebates
*Average Benefit Amount

Helene Weinstein Working to Protect New Yorkers


Congregation Bet Shaul U’Miriam - Sunday Funday Carnival

Assemblywoman Helene Weinstein joins Jack Esses, organizer, and Moshe Nachum, President of Congregation Bet Shaul U’Miriam, at the Congregation’s seventh annual Sunday Funday Carnival. Hundreds of families from the Madison neighborhood participated in the day’s festivities.


The Assembly enacted new laws to crack down on the growing crime of identity theft. These laws will better protect New York residents from being targets of identity theft and provide assistance for those who are victimized. Assemblywoman Weinstein worked hard for these critical new measures – to help prevent these crimes before they happen. New legislation will:

  • Provide consumers with the ability to “freeze” their credit reports to guard against identity theft (Ch.63 of 2006)

  • Require all businesses or business persons to take detailed steps when disposing of personal information (Ch. 65 of 2006)

  • Allow the attorney general to bring civil action against “phishers.” A phisher is someone who sends an email falsely claiming to be an established legitimate enterprise in an attempt to obtain private information to be used for identity theft (Ch. 64 of 2006).

Call Assemblywoman Weinstein’s Community Office for brochures on protecting your identity.

Caribbean American Heritage Month
At Brooklyn Borough Hall, Assemblywoman Weinstein, Dr. Roy Hastick, President and CEO of Caribbean American Chamber of Commerce and Industry (CACCI) and Michael Russell, Community Planning Board #17 Chair discussed economic development issues before the Caribbean American Heritage Month Press Conference.


To fight increasing prescription drug costs, Assemblywoman Weinstein sponsored Bill A6336 which would lower the costs of prescriptions for many seniors and improve access to necessary medication through the creation of a State Drug Assistance Board. The Board would organize bulk purchases and negotiate rebates with drug suppliers. It is hoped that the State Senate will also pass this bill.


Elimination of Statute of Limitations on Rape

Helene Weinstein successfully fought to eliminate the criminal statute of limitations on rape and extend the civil statute of limitations to 5 years, ensuring that rapists will not evade punishment. “Greater justice will be provided to rape survivors with this new law,” said Assemblywoman Weinstein.

Expanding New York’s Criminal DNA Database

The state’s criminal DNA databases will be tripled to include all convicted felons and people convicted of 18 key misdemeanors. “This law will help track down criminals that otherwise could have escaped justice,” said Assemblywoman Weinstein.

Strengthened Megan’s Law

Assemblywoman Helene Weinstein, as a member of the Joint Legislative Conference Committee, helped write the new Megan’s Law. Her efforts prevented thousands of high risk sex offenders registered under NY’s Megan’s Law from being removed from the registry as their registration periods expired beginning January 21, 2006, and will require more offenders to register.

“New Yorkers must have the vital information they need to help keep their families safe against sexual predators,” said Assemblywoman Helene Weinstein. There are currently 1,699 convicted sex offenders in Brooklyn listed on the Registry. To search for Level 2 or Level 3 Sex Offenders on the State’s Sex Offender Registry, visit the DCJS website at www.criminaljustice.state.ny.us or call the Registry Information Line (1-800-262-3257)

Tougher Drunk Driving Penalties

Sweeping reforms to the state’s drunk driving laws target drunk drivers involved in fatal crashes, repeat driving offenders and drivers with high blood-alcohol content levels with much harsher criminal penalties.

  • Establishes a new misdemeanor offense of driving while impaired under the combined influence of alcohol and any drug.

  • Requires court-ordered alcohol and substance abuse screenings, assessments and treatment for certain offenders.


Major McCarthy - Veteran’s Memorial
Assemblywoman Helene Weinstein and Councilman Lewis Fidler join Fraser residents Mr. & Mrs. Jack Zelmanowitz during the Annual Veterans’ Memorial at the Major Eugene T. McCarthy Triangle (Avenue N & East 31st Street), which honors victims of September 11th and Major McCarthy, a local resident who was tragically killed while fighting for our Country in the Gulf War.


Weinstein Live On The Davizon Radio Show
Recently, Assemblywoman Weinstein spoke to the Russian community live on the Davizon Radio show discussing her efforts to have voter materials in additional languages, such as Russian and French Creole, to accommodate voters in her district.


Assemblywoman Helene Weinstein was a leading member of the Assembly/Senate conference committee that drafted new laws to combat Medicaid fraud. The Legislature created a Medicaid Inspector General and established new crimes to prevent and punish Medicaid fraud. Unfortunately, the Senate refused to include Weinstein’s “False Claims Act” that would encourage whistleblowers to come forward with instances of Medicaid fraud and strengthen the Attorney General’s ability to recover fraudulently obtained Medicaid payments.


Good Shepherd Church Friendship Club
Assemblywoman Weinstein spoke to members about the EPIC program and outreach programs held at the Community Office.


Assemblywoman Weinstein is leading the fight to prevent reduction of health benefits for public service retirees. With the passage of her bill A9452 into law, the reduction of health benefits for school district retirees is now prohibited. Additionally, Weinstein sponsored Assembly Bill 9722 which would expand the protection of health benefits to all public sector retirees. Unfortunately, this bill was vetoed by the Governor.

Weinstein Congratulates 2006 Graduates
Each year, Assemblywoman Weinstein presents a Community Service award and savings bond to a graduating student from each school in her district. A former Public School 114 graduate herself, Assemblywoman Weinstein presents awards to deserving graduates from P.S. 114 (on left) and Madison High School.

Assemblywoman Weinstein Helps Save You Money


In the wake of gas prices that have soared past $3 per gallon, the Legislature enacted the “Gas Capping” law to cap state sales tax on gasoline and reduce residential energy costs. This new law:

  • Only collects tax on the first $2.00 of gas, capping the tax at 8 cents per gallon.

  • Fines gas stations up to $5,000 per incident, per day, if they neglect to pass savings on to consumers.

  • Provides consumers with a tax credit for the purchase of home heating fuel oil that contains biodiesel fuel.

  • Allows NYC to reduce or eliminate its sales tax on residential energy.

  • Provides a refundable personal income tax credit up to $500 for the cost of replacing a home heating system with an Energy Star unit.

Helene Weinstein & Eveline Kiley
Flatlands Civic Board member and New York State Board of Regents finalist Eveline Kiley visits Assemblywoman Weinstein on the Assembly Floor during session.
Assemblywoman Weinstein joined Steve Barrison, President, Bay Improvement Group, BIG members and volunteers at BayFest 2006. Assemblywoman Weinstein is a sponsor of this Emmons Avenue celebration.



Upcoming dates:
August 17th, 2006
September 21st, 2006
October 19th, 2006
November 16th, 2006
10:30 am to 12:00 noon

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Proper Age (65 years & older) and photo identification is required.


3520 Nostrand Avenue • Brooklyn, NY 11229 • (718) 648-4700
Monday-Thursday: 9:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Friday: 9:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Please Call Or Stop In If You Have a Problem or a Question!
We speak English, Creole, Russian and Yiddish.