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steve hawley

May 24, 2019 - 12:57pm
posted by Billie Owens in steve hawley, veterans, news, Memorial Day.

A statement from Assemblyman Steve Hawley:

"Today, I join millions of Americans who honor the sacrifice paid by fallen soldiers and their families. Generation after generation, beginning with the American Revolution, soldiers have stood ready to defend their country, freedoms and civil liberties with their lives.

"As a result of that sacrifice, our nation has been free, prosperous and the envy of the world throughout its history.

“Americans owe a special debt of gratitude to our fallen soldiers and gold star families. I am especially grateful that my colleagues in the state Assembly finally joined an effort I have long championed to grant the dependants of fallen soldiers free college tuition.

"I am also proud to continue the tradition of Patriot trips to Washington, D.C., the annual trip I take with veterans and their families to visit the Capitol of our country, which they fought so hard to protect. 

“As the son of a World War II veteran and a veteran of the military myself, standing up for veterans is a duty I will never overlook. That is why I cherish my position on the Veterans’ Affairs Committee in the Assembly.

"In the coming weeks, I look forward to continuing my fight for legislation to exempt honorably discharged veterans from Thruway tolls, veterans over 85 years old from paying state income tax, and extending state benefits to promote veteran-owned businesses.

“Nevertheless, on this Memorial Day I want to extend a special salute to our fallen soldiers and all of our nation’s Gold Star families. As a nation, we must never forget their extraordinary service and patriotism.”

May 20, 2019 - 5:34pm
Video Sponsor

Submitted photo, press release and video:

In support of National EMS Week, Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R,C,I-Batavia) joined Assembly Minority colleagues at a press conference held by Assemblyman Chris Tague (R,C,I,Ref-Schoharie) today in Albany to unveil legislation that would exempt volunteer firefighters and EMS workers from state income taxes (A.7655).

Hawley, a veteran and longtime member of the Assembly’s Veterans’ Affairs Committee, has introduced similar legislation to provide tax relief for active duty service members (A.1956).

“The upcoming Memorial Day weekend is just one example where volunteer firefighters and EMS will be working around the clock, spending precious time away from their families, to protect our community in the face of dangerous situations,” Hawley said.

“Sadly, more and more volunteer fire companies are being forced to close their doors, leaving their neighbors without the precious services they provide and we need to do something about it. These dedicated and brave individuals deserve our help and I implore Assembly leadership and our colleagues in the Majority to join us in getting this passed before session adjourns next month."

To be eligible for the state income tax exemption, a volunteer must:

  • Be in good standing;
  • Have a minimum year of service with the fire department;
  • Be certified by the Chief Emergency Service Coordinator of their county;
  • Attend at least 55 percent of department activities.
May 20, 2019 - 2:06pm
posted by Billie Owens in agriculture, steve hawley, news, farmworkers, business.

Press release from Assemblyman Steve Hawley's office:

Following increasing pressure from Downstate lawmakers to overturn an 80-year law and allow farm workers to unionize, Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R,C,I-Batavia) is again calling for statewide public hearings to be conducted by the Assembly before any vote is proposed to make such a sweeping change to one of New York’s largest industries. 

The former owner/operator of Hawley Farms in Batavia was one of the first legislators to sign onto the Assembly Minority’s letter requesting public hearings on unionization.

“Growing up as a generational farmer in Western New York and eventually owning and operating our family farm, I am confident that unionization would harm our industry and force more family-owned operations to close,” Hawley said.

“Farming is unique in its demands, its work schedule, its earnings structure and its labor needs, and to impose blanket requirements to make it congruent with other industries simply may not work in the agricultural model.”

Hawley, a longtime member of the Assembly’s Agriculture Committee, has been in conversations with Chairwoman Donna Lupardo (D-Binghamton) to hold public hearings for several weeks.

“I suspect that the New York City lawmakers pushing this legislation have very little experience on a farm and we need statewide hearings to ensure that current farmers, their employees and members of the agriculture community are heard before any decisions are made,” Hawley said.

May 2, 2019 - 6:10pm
posted by Billie Owens in steve hawley, undocumented immigrants, news.

Press release:

As details emerge about the effort peddled by New York City politicians to allow undocumented immigrants to obtain driver’s licenses, Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R,C,I-Batavia) blasted the proposal.

This measure comes on the heels of the Majority passing tuition assistance for illegal immigrants while initially opposing Hawley’s bill to do the same for Gold Star families.

“Instead of incentivizing legal immigration, Albany is once again creating a magnet for outright lawlessness,” Hawley said. “First they offered undocumented immigrants the right to free college tuition, now they offer the privilege of driving.

"This latest proposal jeopardizes the safety of our communities throughout the state. NYC lawmakers continue to place the interests of illegal immigrants ahead of law-abiding, middle-class New Yorkers. 

“We are a nation of laws, and these proposals only lead to more giveaways and services for illegal immigrants in our state. In addition, handing out these privileges blurs the lines between law-abiding citizens and those here illegally.

"Rest assured, I will continue to remain steadfast in my commitment to public safety and the rule of law especially in light of the avalanche of proposals endangering New York families in favor of realizing a political agenda."

May 1, 2019 - 6:20pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, steve hawley, West Point Day.

Press release: 

Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R,C,I-Batavia) met with West Point leaders and cadets in recognition of West Point Day at the state Assembly today (May 1).

A proud member of the Veterans’ Affairs Committee, Hawley also has roots of his own in the military, his father was a veteran of World War II and Hawley himself served for seven years in the Ohio Army National Guard as well as the Army Reserves. 

“It is always a great honor to host our West Point leaders and cadets who carry forward this incredible American military tradition,” Hawley said. “West Point embodies what makes America exceptional and its soldiers extraordinary. I commend all of those in the West Point family who continue to protect and serve with the honor and character that makes all of America proud.”

Hawley recently led a successful bipartisan nationwide effort to ensure that the family members and spouses of deceased and disabled military members are provided college benefits free of charge. His vocal advocacy even garnered President Trump’s support for the policy after downstate lawmakers attempted to bury the bill in the legislative committee process.

April 30, 2019 - 12:58pm

Press release from Senator Mike Ranzenhofer:

State Senator Mike Ranzenhofer and Assemblyman Steve Hawley have called on the Governor to restore funding for local Ag Academy, through a program of targeted education funding, referred to as “Bullet Aid.”

“I was very disappointed to see cuts to various agriculture programs," Ranzenhofer said. "The Genesee County Ag Academy provides a unique opportunity to students who are looking for a hands-on experience in agriculture education.

"I am hopeful that the Governor realizes how crucial these programs are and allocates the necessary funding. We are respectfully requesting $100,000 for the Genesee County Agriculture Academy, through the Genesee Valley Educational Partnership."

“New York’s agricultural industry is one of the strongest in the nation, having been realized through a robust and consistent investment in young aspiring farmers and producers in our state budget," said Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R,C,I-Batavia). "To cut funding that empowers future generations of young people interested in farming would devastate the industry and hinder our labor pool. Genesee County is undoubtedly a production hub in our state and the Genesee County Agricultural Academy is the centerpiece of teaching and innovation.

"The $100,000 we are seeking for this institution is readily available through discretionary bullet aid and I implore Gov. Cuomo to make the right decision for New York agriculture.”

This agribusiness program began through funding that Senator Ranzenhofer secured in 2013. Since then, the program has received funding in the budget through local agriculture assistance. For the first time in recent history, the Governor has $5 million to be given out at his discretion, for local education programs.

The 2019-20 budget was passed on April 1st.

April 24, 2019 - 4:35pm
posted by Billie Owens in youth marksmanship, news, steve hawley.

Press release:

Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R,C,I-Batavia) is urging constituents, local officials, Second Amendment advocates, Rod & Gun Club members and anyone involved with youth marksmanship programs to call or write their local representative and Gov. Cuomo requesting a veto of legislation that could virtually wipe out all shooting competitions for youth and training for young people under 16 years of age.

The so called “Safe Storage” bill, which Hawley voted againstplaces unnecessary and ambiguous restrictions on the storage and incapacitation of firearms for those who do not own them and could put an end to youth marksmanship in New York.

“As we’ve seen time and time again with these measures that infringe on our right to bear arms, they are poorly written and passed hastily, causing many undue consequences that hurt law-abiding gun owners, hunters and those who simply enjoy marksmanship activities,” Hawley said.

“This bill has not yet been sent to the governor to be signed into law, which means we must make our voices heard. I urge everyone who supports youth marksmanship and the Second Amendment to call or write the governor immediately!”

Contact Gov. Cuomo by phone: (518) 474-8390

By mail:     The Honorable Andrew M. Cuomo
                   Governor of New York State
                   NYS State Capitol Building
                   Albany, NY 12224

April 24, 2019 - 1:11pm
posted by Billie Owens in steve hawley, news.

Press release:

Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R,C,I-Batavia) has strongly condemned the Assembly Majority’s proposal (A.4319) to automatically consider parole of prisoners once they turn 55 years old, regardless of their crimes or imposed sentence.

“Making time in prison easier has become the platform of New York’s big-city progressive politicians,” Hawley said. “First it was free computer tablets and pay raises for inmates, then it was pardons and voting rights for violent felons as they go on parole and now shorter sentences no matter how horrific the crime – abhorrent.

"If adopted, this bill could result in violent criminals being released from prison before their prison sentence is fully served. Judith Clark and Herman Bell living among us, one who murdered police officers and another who helped murder police officers, would become the new normal in New York.”

Hawley has opposed many of the soft on crime measures enacted in Albany this legislative session. Chief among these is the closure of three state prisons, terminating hundreds of jobs and jeopardizing the safety of constituents.

“This is an outrageous proposal that jeopardizes the public at large and insults crime victims across the state. I will do everything in my power to not allow New York to become a hotbed for progressive social experiments and I am committed to continuing my fight against these dangerous proposals,” Hawley concluded.

April 17, 2019 - 2:02pm

A statement sent today from Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R,C,I-Batavia) following the expansion of the MERIT Scholarship to veterans who lose their lives or become disabled in the line of duty.

“Gold Star Families and disabled veterans have been neglected for far too long and today we are finally righting an injustice and fulfilling our obligation to them," Hawley said. "We will never be able to fully repay our veterans and servicemembers for their role in protecting our nation but I am proud to have led the statewide bipartisan effort to see that the MERIT Scholarship is expanded.

"It is paramount to cover all of our nation’s heroes and their families under this program, and I thank Governor Cuomo for doing the right thing.”

April 16, 2019 - 4:27pm

Press release:

Following statewide and national support for his legislation that would expand MERIT scholarships to protect spouses and dependents of military members who lose their lives in the line of duty and provide them free college tuition and room and board, Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R,C,I-Batavia) is continuing his push for the legislation to become law this year and has launched a national petition to garner support.

“Gold Star families have heard the herald of bipartisan support from state lawmakers in both parties, along with Gov. Cuomo and even President Trump, following the defeat of my bill in committee last week,” Hawley said. “I will continue leading the effort to see that our military receive the benefits they deserve as they carry the tremendous sacrifice of losing a loved one in the line of duty.

"I am confident we can get this legislation passed this year and hopeful that this is the beginning of an era where veterans’ issues transcend political divides and we all can play a part in honoring our brave service members and veterans.”

To sign the petition calling for Hawley’s Gold Star Families Bill to become law please use the link here.

State Democrats defeated Hawley’s proposal (A.2991) in the Assembly’s Higher Education Committee due to the perceived cost it would impose outside of usual March budget negotiations. Assembly Democrats passed a $27 million package giving free college aid to the children of illegal immigrants in late January of this year.

April 9, 2019 - 1:37pm
posted by Billie Owens in steve hawley, veterans, news.

Press release:

New York City politicians on the Assembly’s Higher Education Committee have voted to block legislation, introduced by Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R,C,I-Batavia), offering discounted college tuition, room and board for the dependents of New York military service members who have died in the line of duty. 

The measure, supported by both Democrats and Republicans, would apply to students attending SUNY or CUNY institutions.

“Downstate politicians have no shame in throwing tax dollars at illegal aliens for their college expenses, but when it comes to family members of our nation’s heroes they turn their backs and vote no,” Hawley said. “The priorities of the Assembly Majority become more confusing and hypocritical by the day and to turn their backs on our veterans is disgraceful.

“It’s truly a disservice to this state and, most importantly, our brave veterans that power brokers in Albany kill truly bipartisan legislation with noble causes,” Hawley continued. “Inmates get iPads, parolees get pardons and criminal illegals get lawyers, but the Assembly Majority cries broke when it comes to our valiant veterans – mindboggling.”

April 3, 2019 - 3:43pm
posted by Billie Owens in steve hawley, news.

Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R,C,I-Batavia) sharply criticized Gov. Cuomo’s authorization to close three state prisons, including two within 90 days of the recently passed state budget. These closures will create a cloud of uncertainty for prison employees and threaten public safety across the state.

“I am vehemently opposed to this radical proposal aimed not at protecting the citizens of our state but instead at subsidizing the governor’s runaway tax-and-spend policies in Albany,” Hawley said.

“Perhaps the governor plans to overcrowd state prisons or pardon more inmates to decrease the load other prisons will assume as a result of these closures, but this effort is an unnecessary risk to public safety.

“In addition, this proposal also jeopardizes the employment and safety of thousands of prison personnel, including correctional officers, who put their lives on the line every day for the communities in our state.

"Overcrowded prisons complicate correctional officers’ jobs and could lead to an increase in violent attacks against these public servants. I will continue my fight against prison closures and ensure the safety of our correctional officers and the public at large is our preeminent concern.”

April 1, 2019 - 2:00pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, steve hawley, state budget.

A view of the Assembly Chamber at 1 a.m. this morning as the Legislature still has five budget bills to pass.

Submitted photo and statement by Assemblyman Steve Hawley.

“As usual, the state budget was passed in the middle of the night, rushed through the Legislature with little time for public input or discussion and ridden with contentious policy proposals that should be debated separate from a spending plan.

“I am concerned that the Gov. can now close up to three state prisons within 90 days and state leaders are content with ending bail for some felonies, putting the public at risk and sending the message that those who have broken the law should be given more and more leeway.

“While we did secure funding for key bridge repair and infrastructure projects I am concerned at the growing disparity between Upstate and Downstate infrastructure spending with the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) consuming billions of tax dollars per year with little oversight or accountability.

“I have been a champion of easing the burden on local governments for years and tonight our conference offered a budget amendment to fully restore Aid and Incentives to Municipalities (AIM) funding – this was shamelessly defeated by the Assembly Majority. Gov. Cuomo has drastically changed the AIM formula, forcing counties to fend for themselves instead of offering state help to bolster local services.

“I am pleased to see our direct-care professionals receive funding for retention and salary increases but more needs to be done to protect those who protect our most vulnerable New Yorkers. Our conference has advocated for a living wage for these dedicated men and women for years and will continue championing their cause until a true living wage is achieved.

“As session continues I will keep banging the drum for tax relief, an end to mandated Albany spending passed down to homeowners, reforming our charitable gaming laws and fighting the pro-criminal, anti-Second Amendment policies pushed by Gov. Cuomo.”

March 29, 2019 - 2:17pm
posted by Billie Owens in steve hawley, news, vietnam veterans day.

AboveAssemblyman Steve Hawley [pictured center front] poses with a group of Vietnam veterans in Washington, D.C., during a previous Patriot Trip.

Submitted photos and press release:

Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R,C,I-Batavia) today recognized Vietnam Veterans Day (March 29) by passing an official Assembly Resolution in Albany honoring the event.

Hawley, a veteran, son of a veteran and member of the Assembly Veterans’ Affairs Committee, offered his gratitude and best wishes to New York’s veterans of the Vietnam War and urged constituents to thank a family member or friend who served in Vietnam.

“Vietnam was one of the longest and most violent conflicts in American history with many brave young men, not long out of high school, answering the call of duty for their nation,” Hawley said.

“The campaign to defeat communism and the forces of evil claimed countless brave souls but today is dedicated to honoring their sacrifices and thanking those still with us for their commitment to their nation and its people.”

Below, Hawley poses with a veteran who served as a nurse during the Vietnam War in front of the Vietnam Nurses’ Memorial in Washington, D.C.

March 28, 2019 - 3:08pm
posted by Billie Owens in steve hawley, news.

Press release: 

As Assembly leadership began its yearly tradition of unveiling budget bills Tuesday with the introduction of the Debt Service Bill, Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R,C,I-Batavia) voted against the legislation that would have perpetuated Albany’s reckless spending habits, leading to a state debt of nearly $54 billion.

“Let’s talk about the facts, New York has $53.6 billion in debt and ranks as the second most indebted state behind only California,” Hawley said. “That’s $3,153 that every single person would be responsible for paying if and when the state comes calling.

"This bill calls for our budget to allocate $10.2 billion just to service our debt for one year – money that should be invested in roads, bridges, schools and tax relief efforts, not paying state creditors.

“This is the consequence of extreme tax and spend policies in Albany. No family, business or organization across our state would ever put the kind of spending on a credit card the way that New York State does.

"I will continue to hold the line on responsible spending and total transparency throughout the remainder of our budget process this week. It is time that we ditch the old way of doing things in Albany, and embrace a new vision of fiscal responsibility and pro-growth policies that will allow our state to prosper for decades to come.”

March 15, 2019 - 1:27pm
posted by Billie Owens in steve hawley, news, American Legion, NYS Boys State.

Press release:

As a result of Gov. Cuomo and the State Senate failing to include the New York State American Legion Boys State program in their individual budget proposals, Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R,C,I-Batavia) has taken action.

Hawley, along with more than 40 other lawmakers, have signed onto a letter calling for the program’s full restoration that will be sent to legislative leaders and the governor ahead of the April 1 budget deadline.

The Boys State program melds aspiring high school seniors with American Legion counselors and active duty Marines during a weeklong training seminar at SUNY Morrisville.

The students engage in physical fitness, teamwork building and leadership training exercises while also learning the intricacies of state government.

“This is a unique program that brings together active service members, veterans and high school students eager to become future leaders and active in civic affairs,” Hawley said, “including $150,000 in a budget that is expected to total over $175 billion is a small investment we can make to help the future leaders of New York grow and excel.

"Students from every region of the state attend this program and I urge the governor and legislative leaders to restore this funding and keep the Boys State program vibrant and active.”

March 13, 2019 - 7:16pm
posted by Billie Owens in steve hawley, news.

A Statement from Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R,C,I-Batavia) on the Assembly Majority’s one-house budget wish-list:

 “While I do support restoring the governor’s cuts to municipalities and funding of the Extreme Winter Recovery infrastructure program, I will not stand for a $5.7 billion tax increase as was proposed by New York City politicians today.

“There was no mention of unfunded mandate relief or breaks for small businesses, and even through all those taxes, Assembly leadership still chose to gut counseling services for veterans – an awful decision.

“Included was also an additional tax on rental cars which disproportionately affects Upstate as many in New York City use public transit to travel.

"It’s ironic that Downstate politicians want to further tax rental cars – that may be the last and final tax many families pay as they are leaving our state for the last time.”

March 6, 2019 - 4:25pm
posted by Billie Owens in steve hawley, news, infrastructure.

Submitted photo and press release:

 Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R,C,I-Batavia) today joined legislators, highway superintendents and members of road repair crews from across the state to call for a $150 million increase to the Consolidated Local Street and Highway Improvement Program (CHIPS).

They also want restoration of $65 million in Extreme Winter Recovery funds that Gov. Andrew Cuomo plans to axe from this year’s budget.

“Western New York’s winters are brutal and it’s no surprise that potholes and road deterioration spread like wildfire every spring, so to cut these funds would rob us of the ability to provide safe, smooth and reliable transportation moving forward into the summer travel months,” Hawley said.

“CHIPS funding hasn’t increased in many years but state leaders have no issue dumping billions more into the dysfunctional MTA and expensive Downstate projects. This money is vital to Upstate and we are asking for a small increase relative to the entire budget which is projected near $170 billion this year. I am hopeful state leaders heed our message today.”

February 28, 2019 - 2:45pm
posted by Billie Owens in steve hawley, news.

Press release:

Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R,C,I-Batavia), along with his Assembly Minority colleagues, is introducing the “Budget Blueprint for a Better NY,” a tax relief and funding package that will provide aid to students, homeowners, infrastructure needs, direct care workers, local governments and middle-class families.

The enacted state budget is due April 1.

“I believe in a New York that focuses on middle-class taxpayers, students struggling to afford college, repairing our unsafe roads and bridges and giving direct care workers a living wage – not fringe political issues coming out of New York City,” Hawley said.

“We have a serious exodus problem in this state of people and businesses and we should be putting every resource into making our state a place people want live and work, rather than grow up and move from.

"This is a comprehensive list of bipartisan priorities, and I am hopeful legislative leaders and Governor Cuomo will join us in making these part of the enacted budget.”

Assembly GOP ‘Budget Blueprint for a Better NY’

  •          Make the 2 Percent Property Tax Cap Permanent
  •          Provide a Living Wage For Direct Care Workers
  •          Keep the Middle Class Tax Cuts on Track
  •          Increase Funding for CHIPS
  •          Increase Library Aid
  •          Provide Unfunded Mandate Relief
  •          Give Help to Small Businesses
  •          Improve the Tuition Assistance Program (TAP) & offer Student Loan Relief
  •          Call for a Hearing on Prison Closure Proposals
  •          Keep AIM Funding Levels & Processes Intact

Assemblyman Hawley represents the 139th District, which consists of Genesee and Orleans counties and parts of Monroe County. For more information, please visit Assemblyman Hawley’s Official Website.

February 21, 2019 - 2:59pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, steve hawley, prison.

Press release:

Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R,C,I-Batavia) is calling for all (54) state prisons to remain open and operating today amid a subtle announcement by the governor late Friday to close three unspecified New York prisons.

The plan was buried in a release of Gov. Cuomo’s 30-Day Amendments as changes to his Executive Budget proposal.

“Closing any state prisons would have dire consequences for public safety and the brave correctional officers who work with our incarcerated population,” Hawley said. “By consolidating the prison population, we run the risk of double bunking inmates and exacerbating the high number of violent attacks against corrections officers we have seen in recent years.

"This is not about a declining prison population, this is about the governor scrambling to save money to cover up his $2.3 billion budget shortfall – a terrible solution for an even worse self-inflicted problem.”

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