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Archive for January, 2010

The Week in Policy and Politics: January 25-29, 2010

January 29, 2010 Leave a comment

Call to Action

LAC put out a call asking for sign-ons for a letter to the Governor urging him to include a number of reentry-related bills in his Executive Budget.

Resources and Reports

The Schedule of Joint Legislative Public Hearings on the Governor’s 2010-2011 Executive Budget, as well as the Senate Session Calendar for 2010, were posted in order to help advocates plan legislative days.

We provided a summary of the State Department of Health and AIDS Institute Executive Budget Briefing, as well as a copy of the powerpoint they provided.

What We’re Reading

Housing Works’ summary of Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s budget and its HIV-related cuts.

NYNP debating whether the Governor Paterson’s Executive Budget was a, “bloodbath or a surgical strike?”

LAC’s Director of New York State Policy Tracie Gardner talking about the NY DOH’s HIV/AIDS Stakeholder Briefing.

Timesunion.com’s Rick Karlin reporting on the start of hearings about Governor Paterson’s budget plan.

Mayor Bloomberg making specific reference to the City’s capacity in the corrections arena.

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Housing Works Releases Summary of HIV/AIDS-Related Cuts in Bloomberg Budget

January 29, 2010 Leave a comment

In their most recent AIDS Issues Update feature, Housing Works reviews New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s budget and summarizes its HIV/AIDS-related cuts, as well as other cuts that will impact clients, agencies and programs in the Field.

Read the article here:
http://www.housingworks.org/blogs/detail/mayor-proposes-22-million-in-cuts-to-aids-services/

Call to Action: LAC Seeking Sign-Ons for Letter to Gov. Paterson

January 28, 2010 Leave a comment

LAC is asking for sign-ons for the following letter to the Governor urging him to include a number of reentry-related bills in his Executive Budget.

To sign on, please send an email with your organization’s name and contact person to cferguson [at] lac [dot] org.

The amendment period is very short, so immediate responses are appreciated!


RESPOND TO: LEGAL ACTION CENTER
225 VARICK ST, 4TH FLOOR, NEW YORK, NY 10014
PH: (212) 243-1313 FAX: (212) 675-0286


January 28, 2010

Governor David A. Paterson
State Capitol
Albany, NY 12224

Dear Governor Paterson:

The undersigned organizations that work to eliminate barriers to successful reentry for people with criminal histories applaud you for your leadership in enacting comprehensive drug law reform. We urge you to continue your strong support for giving people with criminal histories a second chance to become productive members of society by including in the Executive Budget, as part of the 30 day amendment period, the re-entry proposals contained in your list of mandate reform initiatives. These proposals, which will help people who paid their debt to society earn a living and become productive, tax-paying, and law-abiding citizens, will reap savings to the State not just in dollars, but in human lives, families and communities as well.

The list of specific bills that we believe accomplish the goals set forth in the 61st mandate reform initiative are listed below. We hope that these and other bills that eliminate barriers to reentry will be included as part of the Executive Budget:

1. S4686/A3770 – Amends Alcohol Beverage Control Law § 102(2) to allow individuals with criminal records to be employed in restaurants, hotels and similar establishments that hold liquor licenses. This outdated law is inconsistent with Article 23-A of the Correction law’s requirement of individualized consideration rather than a flat employment ban.

2. S4366/A3664 – Amends laws to ensure that both certificates of relief from disabilities and certificates of good conduct lift statutory bars. While many statutes provide that both types of certificates lift automatic bars to occupational licenses or other opportunities, some laws only reference one certificate and omit the other. This bill will correct those drafting oversights.

3. S5223/A8222 – Amends the Executive and the Judiciary Law to correct errors appearing in criminal history record reports. Many criminal history record reports lack disposition information because it is never reported to DCJS by the police, prosecutors, or courts. Employers and others who see these entries usually assume they are convictions, which they often are not. This bill prohibits DCJS and OCA from disclosing such indisposed case information.

These provisions, by responsibly increasing employment and other opportunities for people with criminal histories, will save money, help reduce crime, and build communities. For these reasons, we urge you to include them in the Executive Budget.

Sincerely, (List in formation)

Cc: Peter Kiernan

State Department of Health AIDS Institute Provides Briefing on the 2010-2011 Executive Budget

January 27, 2010 Leave a comment

LAC, along with other advocates and providers from across the state, participated in a budget briefing provided by the NYS DOH and staff from the AIDS Institute.

In addition to providing an overview on some of the Medicaid and AIDS drug related budget impacts, Deputy Commissioner Gus Birkhead, AIDS Institute Director Humberto Cruz and Deputy Executive Commissioner Jim Klein walked conference call participants through the program consolidation proposal and the principles that guide the consolidation to address the need to reduce the AIDS Institute budget by $3.8 million. (AIDS Public Health Briefing 01-27-10 ). While the exact program areas slated for cuts have not been determined, the SDOH and AI were emphatic that their bottom line goal was to “preserve core services” and that at least a third of cuts would likely come from programs that were not direct services. They contend that the net result of their proposed reductions would amount to less than a 5% across the board cut, much less than in other state agencies.

More details on the AIDS Institute budget and reduction proposals will be forthcoming on P&P in the next few weeks

“Heads Up!” – Hearings Underway as Hardball Begins Over Paterson Budget Plan

January 26, 2010 Leave a comment

Timesunion.com’s Rick Karlin reports on the start of hearings about Governor Paterson’s budget plan.

http://www.timesunion.com/AspStories/story.asp?storyID=893267&category=REGION

NYNP Provides Overview of Governor’s Cuts to NYC Human Services

January 26, 2010 Leave a comment

Death by a Thousand Cuts

Was it a bloodbath or a surgical strike? The impact of Governor David Paterson’s Executive Budget for FY2010-11, which proposes to close a $7.4 billion deficit with $5.5 billion in spending cuts and $1.4 billion in taxes and other revenues, varies markedly across the nonprofit human service sector.  Most providers and advocates were expecting something close to Armageddon – or even California.  At the end of the day, some programs had escaped relatively unscathed while others were eliminated entirely.  The most common assessment was “death by a thousand cuts” as another round of significant budget reductions followed multiple prior year cuts, slicing ever deeper into the heart of services.

Read the full article on the New York Not for Profit Press website.

“Heads Up!” Bloomberg: ‘Unfair’ State Budget Would Force 18,500 Layoffs

January 25, 2010 Leave a comment

The Mayor makes specific reference to the City’s capacity in the corrections arena.

http://www.nydailynews.com/blogs/dailypolitics/2010/01/bloomberg-unfair-state-budget.html