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SOUTH DAYTON – Residents in Cattaraugus County got the chance to speak one-on-one with their representatives in Albany during a Town Hall meeting on Tuesday night.
With Assemblyman Joe Giglio by his side, New York State Senator George Borrello addressed several concerns, including a newly proposed health department regulation that establishes isolation and quarantine procedures for those who are suspected of having a communicable disease, and where the lawsuit regarding this regulation stands now.
“It’s a clear violation of the separation of powers. If you want it to be a law, then bring it forward, put it on an agenda, put it up for a vote, and let the members of the senate and the assembly vote on it,” says Borrello.
Though Borrello says the lawsuit is in progress, he is sure the Governor’s attempt to replicate Assembly Bill 416 will be deemed unconstitutional.
The Senator also discussed the Climate Leadership Protection Act, which some residents believe could become an issue with how they heat their homes.
“Not being allowed to have any new natural gas hookups or propane hookups January 1, 2024, less than two years from now. This would be disastrous, especially up here. I think that the irresponsible part of this is that, I don’t care about how you’re concerned about low energy or what you think, but the bottom line is natural gas should be used as a bridge fuel at the very least,” explains Borrello.
He furthered that the state used to be energy independent, but now mainly relies on power generated from a coal plant in Pennsylvania. However, the Senator also explained that the Governor took away the regulation to start moving away from natural gas and propane in the 2022 budget.
The impeachment process in New York State was also put into question, as Borrello condemned the assembly for not continuing Andrew Cuomo’s impeachment trial once he resigned, as it leaves him with the opportunity to run for public office again.
“When the people are fed up and see something going wrong, I think recall is a way they can get their voice heard,” says Giglio. “Now recall only means that they’ll be voted out again, so they have a chance to stay.”
Borrello also discussed the legalization of recreational marijuana, saying that the way the state handled the issue was careless, and only to further its social justice cause, instead of increased tax revenue as it first suggested.
“This isn’t really about revenue folks, they said this was gonna be some amazing panacea of economic activity for New York State. We’re gonna generate 350 million dollars in tax revenue in the first year from the sale of recreational marijuana. Guess what they put in the budget, this budget, as their projected first year revenue?” asks Borrello. “56 million.”
Additionally, Borrello believes the use of tax-payer money to fund programs for illegal immigrants is part of the reason New York has the highest rate of out migration. Another reason, explains Borrello, is that the state is the most expensive for entrepreneurs.
“You have a lot of state regulations that make it more expensive, and if you want something built in New York State, it’s gonna cost you more here than virtually anywhere else in America,” says Borrello.
He also voiced his concern about unfunded mandates on local governments, saying that over 80 percent of the county budget is spent on federal mandates.
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