Assemblywoman Annette M. Robinson Assemblywoman
Annette M.
Robinson

Reports to
the People

Summer 2006


SESSION HIGHLIGHTS

Campaign for Fiscal Equity

The Assembly believes that the new capital construction money for the City school system complies with the CFE decision. However, the Senate refused to change operating aid formulas to comply with the decision, despite our efforts in the Assembly. The fight to win full funding for CFE now shifts to increasing operating aid in future years.

School Budget Highlights

  • $1.8 billion more for NYC school construction

  • $501 million increase in NYC education funding

  • $25 million more for NYC pre-K

  • $88.9 million for class size reduction

photo Representatives from United Federation of Teachers voice their budget concerns.

Enhancing Education

Libraries provide research and resource materials to enhance what children learn in the classroom. To keep New York State libraries up to date, the Legislative budget provides:

  • $5.7 million to ensure library aid keeps up with local population growth and other rising costs

  • $14 million for capital projects to help local libraries modernize their facilities and invest in new educational technology

The Legislature also restored cuts to several programs, providing increases over the governor’s budget for New York City of:

  • $70 million for special education

  • $10.7 million for Teacher Centers

  • $1.6 million for the Teacher Mentor Intern Program

Child Tax Credit

The Legislature has passed its Empire Child Tax Credit program, which will provide a maximum benefit of $330 for each child between ages 4 and 17 for every family in the state. The result will be $600 million in tax relief for New York families.

Unlike the governor’s proposed child tax credit, which would have been limited to only a small number of school districts, every family in the state no matter what district they reside in will qualify for the credit under the Legislature’s plan. Families with children in public, private, or charter schools will all equally qualify for the child tax credits. The Legislature hopes that the Empire State Child Tax Credit will help New York families face the financial challenges associated with raising children.

Tax Relief

New Yorkers will reap $750 million in property tax relief in this year’s budget, including a cost of living adjustment to Enhanced STAR, which will save seniors an additional $72 million a year. The Legislature raised the New York City STAR personal income tax credit, currently at $62.50 for single taxpayers and $125 for households, to $115 for single filers and $230 for households.

Other tax relief components in the bipartisan budget:

  • A tax exemption for New York State National Guard members called to service by the federal government, saving them $1 million.

  • An income tax credit for volunteer firefighters and ambulance workers.

  • The elimination of the so called marriage penalty, saving married couples $41 million annually.

Prosecuting criminals who possess firearms - Possession a Class C felony

This legislation will elevate the possession of a single illegal loaded firearm to a Class C Felony by removing the requirement of intent to use the firearm (A.12042).

Under current law, an individual must possess five or more illegal handguns or have the intent to use a single loaded firearm to face a Class C felony charge. Currently, a person charged with possession of a loaded firearm, with special findings, may be sentenced to local jail time or straight probation. The measure approved by the Legislature requires a mandatory, no-parole prison term of 3.5 years.

By elevating the penalty for possession of an illegal firearm and ensuring those found guilty face prison time instead of probation, this legislation takes an important step toward ridding New York’s streets of illegal guns.

This bill sends a clear message that the people of New York will not tolerate violence perpetuated by illegal weapons.

Predatory Sexual Assault

To crack down on the most dangerous sexual predators (A.8939-A). The Assembly passed the measure in January as part of its Child Safety and Sexual Predator Punishment and Confinement Strategy.

The bill will create the crime of predatory sexual assault, elevating penalties for Class B violent felony sex crimes, such as rape, to a maximum of life in prison if the perpetrator:

  • Causes serious physical injury to the victim while committing the crime;

  • Uses or threatens the immediate use of a dangerous instrument while committing the crime;

  • Commits any of the four Class B violent sex felonies against more than one person; or

  • Has had a previous major sex crime conviction or conviction of incest or the use of a child in a sexual performance.

Additionally, adults convicted of serious sex crimes in which the victim is under the age of 13 could spend the rest of their lives in prison, regardless of any other aggravating circumstance.

Sex offender registry - Level 2 offenders to be available online

The bill adds Level 2, moderate-risk sex offenders to the state’s online sex offender registry and authorizes local police authorities to provide information concerning Level 1 offenders to vulnerable populations (A.8370-A).

In addition, this measure allows groups representing our most vulnerable populations access to information on even low-risk, Level 1 sex offenders so that more children can be protected under the law.

Health Care

New York State will invest an additional $800 million this year in health care programs (A.12045/S.8471).

photo John Rappaport & Glendon Bleedy lobby on behalf of the expansion for Bedford Stuyvesant YMCA

Under the budget agreement between the Assembly, Senate and governor, the state will:

  • Increase hospital emergency room reimbursement rates from $95 to $12 beginning January 1, 2007; $140 beginning in 2008; and $150 in 2009;

  • Increase nursing home reimbursement;

  • Provide $172 million in additional HCRA spending for restorations and new initiatives; and

  • Extend the state’s wraparound coverage of Medicaid/Medicare dual-eligible individuals for an additional year, through December 31, 2007.




ASSEMBLYWOMAN ROBINSON’S LEGISLATION PASSED

Passed A5122
Allows the name of a deceased petitioner for adoption, who died prior to the legal completion of the adoption, to be included on the new birth certificate as the parent.

Passed

A6376
Authorizes the City of New York to reconvey real property to Mr. R. Cradle.

Passed

A10581
Extends until June 1, 2011 the deadline for local legislative action providing tax incentives for the rehabilitation or improvement of multiple dwellings.

Passed

A11635
Authorizes a public education campaign on a zero tolerance policy for child abuse and maltreatment.



PUBLIC HOUSING
TOWN HALL MEETING

On Thursday, July 20th, I hosted a Town Hall Meeting with the New York City Housing Authority. This meeting was for all tenants residing in NYC Public Housing.

During the meeting we addressed the proposed rent increase, special fees and safety & security.

For those unable to attend, you may contact your Tenant Association President for information.




Robinson Summer Reading Challenge

With the end of the school year comes another opportunity for parents to help children discover the joy of reading. Study after study has shown that children who read develop communication and thinking skills earlier then those who don’t. Reading helps children with speech, vocabulary, comprehension of complex ideas, and pronunciation. Children who continue to read during the summer are more likely to perform better in school in the fall.

photo Students, parents and advocates from the Coalition for after-school programs lobbying on the importance of after-school programs

To encourage children of the 56th district to read this summer, Assemblywoman Robinson wants to extend an open invitation to parents and children to participate in the 2006 Robinson Reading Challenge. Children who meet the minimum of reading at least 15 minutes a day for 40 days during July and August will be rewarded for their initiative with a New York State Excellence in Reading Certificate. Assemblywoman Robinson hopes that this reading challenge will make an impact on children to pursue lifelong learning. For further details about the 2006 Robinson Challenge, please call 399-7630 or stop by the office at 1360 Fulton Street – Ste. 417.

Happy Reading & Good luck!




CORRECTION EXPLORERS VISIT STATE CAPITOL

DOC’s Explorer Posts are part of the Boy Scouts of America Law Enforcement Exploring program.

photo Youth from the Correction Explorers program visit Albany and speak on the importance of the program and how it can assist other interested youth

Exploring is the Boy Scouts’ youth development program for young men and women, 14 through 20 years of age, who subscribe to the Explorer Code. Its purpose is to provide experiences to help young people mature and to prepare them to become responsible and caring adults. Every Explorer post “specializes’’ in a specific career, hobby, sport, or outdoor program area. More than 100 different specialties have been organized, ranging from accounting to zoology. Some specialty programs have grown to include a national committee, activities, and staff support.

Interested in joining the program? Please contact Correction Officer Daphne Glover during regular business hours through her Central Office phone number: (212) 266-1139.




SAVING LIVES FOR A LIVING
Join the FDNY

Just imagine the impact you could make in your life and the lives others. Become an FDNY Firefighter, EMT or Paramedic.

Anticipated filing period for the next exam is July 2006-September 2006. For further information call 718-999-FDNY between the hours of 9:00am-4:00pm

Apply to become an FDNY EMT or Paramedic by calling 718-999-2169 or 718-999-2179 between the hours of 9:00am-4:00pm.




NEW SUMMER HOURS IN EFFECT

Please be aware that starting July 5 through
September 18, 2006 Summer Office hours are:

DISTRICT OFFICE
Mon – Fri: 10:00am-3:00pm
1360 Fulton Street – Room 417
Brooklyn, New York 11216
718-399-7630
fax: 718-399-7690

LEGISLATIVE OFFICE
Mon – Fri: 10:00am-3:00pm
Room 729 Legislative Office Building
Albany, New York 12248
518-455-5474
fax: 518-455-5857


Contact Assemblywoman Robinson
DISTRICT OFFICE: 1360 Fulton Street, Room 417, Brooklyn, New York 11216
(718) 399-7630 • fax: (718) 399-7690
E-Mail: robinsa@assembly.state.ny.us

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