Year in review: A column by Assemblyman Hawley
Last year was certainly one for the books, though the reasons 2021 was so notable aren’t necessarily worth celebrating. Our governor resigned in disgrace, more of the businesses we love in our communities shuttered, taxes increased, prices increased and we passed a budget that cost us more than ever. All while doing less than ever to actually help working families. Throughout, we have also continued to contend with a pandemic that has worn on our economy and the fortitude of New Yorkers across the state, as some in government yet again consider mandates and lockdowns that would assuredly take a tremendous toll on our collective recovery.
I say this not to elicit feelings of doom or gloom but out of a hope, that by recognizing the mistakes made in state government this year, we can work together to rectify them and put our state on a path toward growth. The circumstances we face have often been described as “unprecedented,” so given the challenges before us, I feel that we have an opportunity to work collaboratively to deliver solutions many in the Legislature haven’t given a fair shake in the past.To put it simply, I believe that the best way of fostering prosperity here in New York state is to unleash the power of its people by staying out of the way of their success. By creating a business climate that will attract the brightest minds our nation has to offer, and that will retain the talents we have. More than anything, we need to give people a reason to believe New York’s brightest days are still ahead.
Perhaps, most important, we must also ensure that people feel safe living and starting families here. To do so we must give our law enforcement and judiciary the tools they need to protect our neighborhoods. The end of the decay of our villages, towns and cities will begin with the rescinding of our state’s dangerous bail reform laws. These changes have tied the hands of our judges and empowered criminal elements to act with impunity, knowing that they will be released back onto the streets, even if they’re apprehended. In 2022, we must collectively recognize that bail reform was a mistake and restore law and order throughout New York.
Here in New York we’ve tried raising taxes, we’ve tried heavy-handed mandates and we’ve tried various police “reforms,” all to the detriment of our state’s public safety and prosperity. If there was ever a time for a change to give New Yorkers a chance to chase their dreams and lift up their communities in the process, that time is now. This year, let’s give New Yorkers a chance to control their own destinies, put an end to one-size-fits-all mandates and empower individuals and local governments to do what’s best for their families and the municipalities they know and love.
New Yorkers are the toughest and most industrious people in this entire country and they deserve a legal and economic climate that will allow them to unleash what they’re capable of onto the national and global marketplace. This year let’s make New York work for those who seek to better their lives and communities through hard work.
Assemblyman Hawley represents the 139th District, which consists of Genesee, Orleans and parts of Monroe County. For more information, please visit Assemblyman Hawley’s Official Website.