Tags Posts tagged with "New York State Senator Anthony Palumbo"

New York State Senator Anthony Palumbo

Photo by Raymond Janis

Governor’s educational proposal dead on arrival

Here on Long Island, we love our schools, teachers and students. Our education system is the reason many come to the Island to raise their families because it contributes to strong, healthy communities and a balanced quality of life.

We should all be concerned that Gov. Kathy Hochul’s [D] proposed executive budget threatens our schools by ending the so-called “hold harmless” provision, which is a backdoor approach to cut millions of dollars in school aid. If the governor’s proposal is adopted, 56 school districts on Long Island will experience an instant decline in state funding. In Suffolk County, school districts will be out nearly $33 million in aid under the governor’s proposal.

These cuts would have a dramatic impact on our schools, students and communities. Additionally, cuts of this magnitude could result in larger class sizes, reduced staff, the elimination of athletic programs, extracurricular activities and clubs for students. These draconian cuts would also place additional burdens on Long Island homeowners, who already pay some of the highest property taxes in the nation. The governor’s educational proposal is a lose-lose for Long Island and countless communities throughout the state.

Making this situation even worse, much of this critical education aid is being siphoned off to pay for the state’s astronomical and growing commitment to the migrant crisis, to which over the past two years the governor has allocated $4.3 billion. Clearly, the governor and the leadership in the Legislature are incapable of managing this crisis in an attempt to balance the budget on the backs of hardworking families and students. This cannot be tolerated. Funding must be dedicated to school services for the benefit of families who play by the rules, pay the property taxes and have the right to a quality education.

As lawmakers, parents and concerned citizens, we must make our voices heard in opposition to the governor’s elimination of the “hold harmless” provision, fight to restore education funding to our schools and put our children’s needs and education first.

Anthony Palumbo [R]

New York State Senator, 1st District

Skin cancer prevention for winter season

The winter season brings cold winds and snowy weather, but it also can bring damage to your skin. Ultraviolet radiation from the sun damages your skin year-round, not just during the summer months.

Skin cancer is the most common form of cancer in the U.S., yet most cases can be prevented. UV radiation from the sun and indoor tanning lamps are the primary cause of skin cancer, and reducing your exposure can significantly reduce your cancer risk. Even on cold, winter days, UV radiation from the sun can cause damage to your skin, especially at high altitudes and on reflective surfaces such as snow or ice. Snow reflects up to 80 percent of the sun’s UV radiation, increasing the damage caused to your skin.

Sun protection is necessary every day, regardless of the weather or time of year. Sun safe practices such as applying sunscreen with SPF 15 or higher, wearing a wide-brimmed hat, UV protective sunglasses and long-sleeved clothing, and seeking shade whenever possible, can help prevent skin cancer.

The Cancer Prevention in Action at Stony Brook Cancer Center works to build awareness about the dangers of UV radiation and promote the benefits of sun safety through education, awareness and policy support to reduce skin cancer rates on Long Island.

To learn more about Cancer Prevention in Action, visit takeactionagainstcancer.com or contact us at 631-444-4263 and [email protected].

CPiA is supported with funds from Health Research Inc. and New York State..

Cancer Prevention in Action

Stony Brook Cancer Center

Pro-life, pro-choice issue from a gender fairness perspective

Not surprisingly, in contemplating the pro-life/pro-choice debate, women as a group are pro-choice and men pro-life. This is demonstrated in multiple polls and although not absolute gender adherence, there is a statistical difference. No doubt this is because women bear the physical reality of pregnancy and childbirth and almost always of raising and paying for the child that two people created. A man’s role of planting the seed does not match their female partner — whether consensual or not. No wonder there is a clear distinction between how women feel on the issue versus men.

What if there was a way to make men share in this responsibility. Not to duplicate pregnancy, that’s biologically impossible. But to share in raising that child and paying for it. Would that change how men feel and vote? Fact of the matter there is a way: DNA identification. What if everyone had to submit a swab for DNA identification. Then every father who shared in creating a child could be held responsible to raise and pay for him/her. My point is not whether this is right. It is simply: Would this change the way men vote on the issue?

David Roy Hensen

Miller Place

Peace is possible

As Quakers, we believe that peace in the world is possible, as Mary Lord, Quaker, of the American Friends Service Committee, reminds us: “We are called to live into the peaceable kingdom, and in that living discover the joy of a better way of life — in harmony with the Earth and one another. Peacemaking is not only possible but practical every day” (Friends Journal, June 1, 2007). Peacemaking requires that we acknowledge the background of all participants, actively listen to what has been learned, then consider the elements of agreement.

Our peaceful sentiments have been called naive and even unpatriotic. However, which is the greater naivety: To believe that the difficult but productive path of using diplomacy and strengthening international law is the path of safety, or to believe that wars and their weapons of mass destruction resolve conflicts and make us safe and secure?

The path of “winning the war,” as though it were a game, is, as history shows, the more naive perspective. War brings a horrific cost in human life, in property, in cultural treasures, in the fouling of the Earth and killing of its creatures. The aftermath invalidates the notion that wars bring about resolution, as evidenced by continuing warfare in the Middle East, Ukraine, Myanmar, Somalia and elsewhere.

Because Quakers believe there is good in everyone — people always have the capacity to be their best selves — we believe it is worth the effort of taking the steps of peacemaking to avoid the horrific costs of war and to provide the hope of establishing a just reality that sows the seeds of peace for future generations.

Carolyn Emerson

Clerk of Conscience Bay Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends, St. James

Rocky Point VFW rally for veteran funding on Feb. 1. Photo courtesy Office of Senator Anthony Palumbo

By Nasrin Zahed

State Sens. Anthony Palumbo (R-New Suffolk) and Mario Mattera (R-St. James), alongside state Assemblymembers Jodi Giglio (R-Riverhead) and Ed Flood (R-Port Jefferson), joined forces Thursday, Feb. 1, with local veteran groups to demand the prompt distribution of over $1 million in taxpayer donations destined for veteran organizations. 

The urgency of this allocation is underscored by the critical need to support veterans, particularly those requiring continuous care, through funds earmarked for state veterans homes.

The press conference, held at the Rocky Point Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 6249, served as a platform to amplify the voices advocating for the dissemination of these funds. In addition to the elected officials in attendance were Bob Smith, chairman of the Long Island State Veterans Home Advisory Board, and Joe Cognitore, commander of VFW Post 6249 and a member of the LISVH Advisory Board, along with other local veterans and groups.

At the heart of the matter lies the delay in distributing approximately $410,000 allocated for state veterans homes, essential for providing round-the-clock care to veterans in need. Palumbo, recognizing the urgency of the situation, had previously taken action by issuing a formal letter to Amanda Hiller, acting tax commissioner and general counsel of the New York State Department of Taxation and Finance, urging for the expedited allocation of these donations.

During the press conference, Palumbo emphasized the moral obligation to allocate these funds, stating, “Our veterans have sacrificed so much for our country, and it is our duty to ensure they receive the care and support they need without delay.” His sentiments were echoed by Giglio and Flood, who reaffirmed their commitment to advocating for the timely distribution of these crucial resources.

Smith continued the conversation, emphasizing the tangible impact of these funds on the lives of veterans, noting that every moment of delay translates to missed opportunities to provide essential care and services.

Cognitore expressed his gratitude, saying, “It was unbelievable, they went above and beyond their duty and our cause in representing us.”


From left, Rebecca Kassay, Sen. Anthony Palumbo, Assemblywoman Jodi Giglio, Sen. Mario Mattera, Assemblyman Ed Flood and high school students rally against proposed education cuts. Photo by Samantha Rutt

Elected officials from across Long Island joined forces in a rally Feb. 1 held on the front lawn of Ward Melville High School. A diverse crowd of educators, students, parents, concerned citizens and community figures gathered for the event, lining Old Town Road with signage reading “$ave Our School$,” as officials vehemently spoke in opposition to the proposed cuts to education funding outlined in the latest state budget proposal. 

The proposed cuts, part of a broader state budget plan aiming to address fiscal challenges, have sparked widespread concern among education advocates and community members. Long Island officials, representing various districts and political affiliations, united in their stance against these reductions, emphasizing the detrimental impact they would have on the region’s schools and students.

New York State Sens. Anthony Palumbo (R-New Suffolk) and Mario Mattera (R-St. James), along with state Assemblymembers Ed Flood (R-Port Jefferson), Jodi Giglio (R-Riverhead) and Port Jefferson Deputy Mayor Rebecca Kassay (D) all stood before the podium expressing their respective concerns.

“Governor Hochul’s proposed budget is a choice to underfund our schools, and it’s shameful,” Palumbo said. “We’re here to bring attention to that. This is critical. This is absolutely important.”

Palumbo, who represents New York Senate District 1, spanning from Stony Brook to Montauk, opened the rally addressing the financial consequences of the proposal on his district. 

“The governor’s proposed budget cuts state aid by $168 million, affecting 337 school districts statewide,” Palumbo said. “My district, Senate District 1, around 330,000 people, stands to lose $20,025,000 if the governor’s budget is adopted. And where we’re standing here in Three Village, they stand to lose $8.9 million in funding.” 

Three Village Central School District is among the many school districts to be affected by the budget proposal, experiencing the highest values lost in aid. Among the other districts to be affected are Port Jefferson School District standing the potential to be hit by the largest percentage of funding loss on Long Island at over 28%. Mount Sinai, Cold Spring Harbor, Smithtown and Kings Park school districts also stand to be negatively affected by the proposal.

Concerns for education quality and job loss

The rally highlighted the importance of adequate funding for schools in ensuring the quality of education and opportunities for all students. Flood spoke to his concerns for the quality of education students would receive suggesting programs, extracurricular activities and staff would have to be cut as a consequence of the proposed cuts to education funding.

“It’s disgraceful that we’re talking about having to cut budgets, in terms of cutting buildings, cutting programs, cutting staff and faculty,” Flood said. “We as people, teachers and school employees have our own families and right now to play politics with the lives of our students and our workforce is just shameful.” 

Cuts to education funding can have a multifaceted impact that can undermine the quality of education by diminishing resources, increasing class sizes, reducing extracurricular opportunities and straining the workforce, ultimately impeding students’ academic success and holistic development.

Echoing Flood’s sentiments, Mattera highlighted the direct consequences of reduced funding on classroom resources and student support services. “All the workers that are inside, our custodians, everybody, our security officers have a chance of losing their jobs. Does anybody want to lose their jobs? No,” Mattera emphasized. “You know what, our governor is making sure that this is going to happen.”

The rally also featured testimonials from parents who shared personal stories illustrating the impact of education funding on their lives. Kristen Gironda, a member of the Three Village PTA Council board, spoke about the challenges students may face and the critical role of adequate funding in addressing those obstacles. “We rely heavily on Foundation Aid for the success of our current and future students,” Gironda said. “Cutting this money from the current budget would be detrimental to the future of our students, their education and the opportunity that we can continue to provide them with.”

Students were also present at the rally, donning signs and standing alongside the officials as cars driving past honked their horns in reaction to the public event.

After all other officials spoke, Kassay concluded, “We must work together as a full district to make sure that as changes need to be made and that they’re made with the voices of the people standing here, the voices of the school behind us, and all the schools in the area to make sure that the changes are incremental, not straining taxpayers and not sacrificing jobs.” 

As the rally came to a close, elected officials pledged to continue advocating for increased education funding and urged community members to join them in their efforts urging everyone to “Get vocal with Governor Hochul!”

New York State Senator Anthony Palumbo

By Anthony H. Palumbo

Late last month, as New Yorkers were making plans to celebrate the New Year, Governor Hochul once again vetoed the Grieving Families Act. Her action was a surprise to many of us in the State Legislature, especially considering the broad, nearly unanimous bipartisan support for the bill’s passage in consecutive sessions.

More surprisingly was that her veto pen fell on a vastly changed version of the legislation, which was updated to assuage the Governor’s concerns over the Act’s overhyped impact on the State’s hospitals and insurance industry.

The Grieving Families Act is important as it would bring New York State’s wrongful death statute into the modern era, on par with the rest of the nation and in line with our values. It would provide families who have lost a child or loved one the ability to seek damages for their pain and suffering in cases where wrongful death is established.

By expanding the State’s wrongful death statute beyond the callous ‘monetary value’ of the deceased and allowing for pain and suffering to be calculated in wrongful death cases, the legislation weighs the full and devastating impact that the loss of a child, spouse, stay at-home parent, or disabled grandparent has on a family.  It would also hold the wrongdoer responsible for the death accountable.

The benefits of the legislation to New York’s families are crystal clear. The steps that the New York State Legislature will take next to ensure the Grieving Family Act becomes law, is less evident.

There have been discussions to override Governor Hochul’s veto of the Grieving Families Act, but these talks have been met by a mixed response from Democratic Leaders in the State Legislature. Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie referred to a veto override as a nuclear option and Senator Brad Hoylman-Siegel, Chairman of the Judiciary Committee and the bill’s sponsor stated he doesn’t believe an override can occur in a different calendar year from when the bill was vetoed.  To the person, however, these same legislators have engaged in splashy press conferences and rhetorical speeches regarding the need to make the Grieving Families Act law so we can protect victims of negligence.

My solution would be for both houses of the State Legislature to again pass the 2023 version of the bill, and before the State Budget is approved. This would provide Legislators greater leverage, and show our resolve to have the Act become law in 2024.  With supermajorities in both houses, why won’t the Democrats that constantly claim to protect victims and be the Party That Cares More Than Everybody Else simply flex their legislative muscle to make this happen.  If the Governor vetoes the bill again, they must use the ‘nuclear option’ and override her veto.

Antithetically, during last year’s historic nomination of Justice Hector Lasalle for Chief Judge of the Court of Appeals, the Senate Democrats were more than willing to override the Governor to stack the court with progressives who would toe the political line when it came to the congressional redistricting case that was soon to be heard. Despite the historic nature of the nomination, as the first Latino nominee for Chief Judge, the impeccable qualifications of Justice Lasalle and the fact that the legislature has never denied a Governor’s nomination for Chief Judge, the Lasalle nomination was defeated because he didn’t fit with their agenda. 

Now, with something as important as the Grieving Families Act, the Democrats seem unwilling to move the ball forward.  If they were willing to challenge the Governor for political power, it would be my hope that they could do it for legislation that would serve a greater purpose for all New York’s families.  2024 must be the year the Grieving Families Act becomes law. Whether this happens by the Governor acquiescing to sign the bill or through an override, the important first step is for lawmakers to take action now and repass the Grieving Families Act so we can do what’s right as New Yorkers, for New Yorkers.

Anthony H. Palumbo

New York State Senator, 1st District 

By Samantha Rutt

Three Village Civic Association held its monthly meeting at the Setauket Firehouse Monday night, Dec. 4. The meeting was well attended by members of the community and featured guest speakers, New York State Sen. Anthony Palumbo (R-New Suffolk ) and Assemblyman Ed Flood (R-Port Jefferson).

Civic president Charles Tramontana reminded the community of next Tuesday’s fire commissioner vote. The vote will be held at Setauket Fire Department Station 3 on Nicholls Road from 2-9 p.m. Anyone who is registered to vote is eligible to participate.

Palumbo and Flood updated the body on various developments in Albany, including the state budget, recent bail reform laws, community projects and wastewater infrastructure. They also took questions from the audience.

One of the foremost issues discussed was that of last week’s Brookhaven Town Board meeting, a redevelopment plan for Jefferson Plaza in Port Jefferson Station calling for adding homes to the shopping center, built about 1959. The project is set to include 280 apartments and a retail area, including a food court, gym and other shops.

Attendees addressed concerns about the potential development, urging for a more logical and in-line suburban development plan. Carolyn Sagliocca, vice president of the Port Jefferson Station/Terryville Civic Association, attended the meeting to voice concern over the potential development. She asked for the Three Village community’s input on the matter.

“What a nightmare is happening around us,” she said. “I wanted to let everyone know that public comments are open for 30 days following the hearing.”

Monday’s civic meeting also mentioned the omission of wastewater infrastructure on recent ballots and the growing concern for a better infrastructure plan. Suffolk County Legislator-elect Steve Englebright (D-Setauket) spoke briefly on the issue.

“Sewers are a tool, they’re not the answer,” Englebright said. “If you look at what the three large sewers on the South Shore of Nassau County have created, they’ve drained the water table,” adding, “It’s a matter of, like with many things, a matter of balance.”

The meeting also included a collection of healthy canned food items for the Stony Brook Food Farmacy food pantry.

The meeting highlighted the importance of open dialogue and community engagement in addressing critical issues facing the Three Village area. The association holds monthly meetings that are open to the public. 

For more information about the Three Village Civic Association, visit its website 3vcivic.org.

New York State Senator Anthony Palumbo

By Anthony Palumbo

A recent Siena College poll shows that 82% of New Yorkers view the wave of migrants flooding our nation and state as a serious problem. Compounding the issue has been Washington and Albany’s lack of action and a clear plan to address the humanitarian crisis their policies helped create. 

This failure of leadership can be seen daily in the news — migrants sleeping on the streets, shuttled to hotels throughout the state and haphazard plans complete with no-bid contracts to house these individuals and families in tent cities or on college campuses. 

While New York City and Albany lock horns, cast blame and piece together last-minute plans to address a problem that has been a long time coming, we need to ensure that Long Island is shielded, not from migrants, but from the failed leadership and policies that created this man-made disaster. 

That shield is local control.

During this year’s legislative session, I joined my colleagues calling for policies to block the use of New York’s ill-suited college campuses for migrant housing and proposed plans to bus them to our small communities without local input and approval.

We also requested that the governor’s office share with us the plan and the amount of New York tax dollars being used to house, transport and care for these individuals. 

Additionally, we requested the state comptroller provides a fully transparent accounting of all tax dollars being spent and make that information available via a searchable, public database. This information is critical as the state faces severe financial challenges and we work to stop additional burdens being placed on local governments, schools and, most importantly, taxpayers. 

Recent history, from the pandemic to the governor’s failed housing proposals, has shown that the top-down, Albany-centric approach fails because it doesn’t consider the diverse and unique communities that are the foundation of the Empire State. 

In light of Gov. Hochul’s [D] previously ill-conceived plan of housing migrants at Stony Brook University’s main and Southampton campuses, and other sites across Long Island, our local communities and officials must all be included in the discussion before any decisions are made. 

County and town officials are our partners and need to be treated as such. Strong local control, community input and funding from state and federal partners must be the first step toward crafting a plan to address the migrant crisis.   

New Yorkers are a welcoming people, and their change in mood is not one of the heart but in their lack of faith in the leadership of our state and nation. Midnight bus runs to motels and pop-up tent cities in suburban neighborhoods with inadequate services are not the answer.

The only solution comes with funding and proper planning. Plans where input from residents and approval from the town and local officials are required. Building consensus is not always easy, but it is the only way the New York State government will be able to solve this immediate humanitarian crisis and address the long-term impacts of uncontrolled migration until someone in Washington finds the courage to fix the crisis at our southern border.

Anthony Palumbo (R-New Suffolk) is a New York State senator representing the 1st District.

Mobile Mammography Van

On Thursday, August 10, the Stony Brook Cancer Center Mobile Mammography Van will make a special visit to the Town of Brookhaven’s Rose Caracappa Senior Center, 739 Route 25A, Mt. Sinai, to provide breast cancer screenings from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

This service, co-sponsored by New York State Senator Anthony Palumbo and the Town of Brookhaven, is provided at no cost to the patient. However, appointments are required. Anyone interested can call 631-638-4135 for more information or to schedule an appointment.


  • Female (40 years and older)
  • No mammograms in the past year
  • Not pregnant or breastfeeding
  • No implants or breast issues such as a lump or nipple discharge
  • Never diagnosed with breast cancer
  • Office visit with a gynecologist, primary care physician or internist who is willing to accept the results of the screening.

Note: Individuals who do not have health insurance will be processed through the Cancer Services Program of New York, if eligible.

Day of the mammogram: Do not wear deodorant, perfume, powders, lotions or creams on the breast area. Bring photo ID and insurance card, if insured.

This project is supported with funds from Health Research Inc. and the New York Department of Health.