Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Bazzomanifesto Update 04/29/15: 4 Topics In Today's blog

THIS BLOGS TOPICS:

1) Westchester Legislators to Eliminate County Agency, save taxpayers $1.8 million immediately

2) Westchester County Offers Free Meningitis Vaccines

3) [MEDIA ADVISORY] *Thu, 4/30, 7p* Statewide heroin task force in Westchester

4) KATZ: FISCAL TRANSPARENCY MEASURE KILLED BY MAJORITY

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For Immediate Release: April 27, 2015

Contact: Matt Richter, BOL Communications Director

646-302-2220, mjr3@westchestergov.com

 

Board of Legislators to Eliminate County Agency, Establish New Energy Director Position

 

Vote expected tonight, Move would save taxpayers $1.8 million immediately

 

The Westchester County Board of Legislators (BOL) in partnership with County Executive Rob Astorino are poised to pass legislation at tonight’s BOL meeting which will save tax payers millions of dollars.  The two part initiative dissolves a 33 year old county energy agency which had outlived its function and creates an “executive level” position within county government that will ensure county operations follow best practices in regards to energy consumption and sustainability.

 

The move would repeal a local law passed in 1982 which established the County of Westchester Public Utility Service Agency (COWPUSA).  The dissolution of COWPUSA will immediately return more than $1.8 million dollars to the county.  COWPUSA’s mission was to acquire low-cost hydroelectric or other economical forms of electricity from New York State and state agencies for resale to utility customers in the Con-Ed service area within Westchester County.  The customer base for COWPUSA dwindled over the years to a level that the agency’s existence was no longer necessary. In 2012 COWPUSA’s few remaining customers were enrolled in the State’s “ReCharge New York Program”.

 

The second part of the initiative establishes the Office of Energy Conservation and the position of Energy Director.  The Energy Director’s mission will be to save taxpayers money by coordinating the County’s energy policy across all departments, facilities and operations with a focus on reduction of fossil fuels and water consumption through conservation, energy efficiency measures and alternative energy sources.  Additionally, the Energy Director will establish policies on green purchasing, solid waste recycling, green building, and greenhouse gas reduction. The Office of Energy Conservation will also pursue government funding through grants.  Outside of County operations, the Energy Director would provide assistance, leadership, and coordination to community agencies, local governments, and businesses in the area of environmental sustainability.

 

Board of Legislators Chairman Michael Kaplowitz first proposed the Office of Energy Conservation and the position of Energy Director back in 2005 and has continued to advocate for this position for the past decade. “I am thrilled that after ten years of pushing for this policy, it has finally come to fruition.  While no law is perfect, this dual legislation is an excellent solution to two problems and as close to perfect as I could have hoped for.”  Kaplowitz said, “As with every success in government, this required collaboration and compromise.  I thank County Executive Rob Astorino and my colleagues on the Board, especially Environment and Energy Committee Chair Catherine Parker for their hard work, determination and leadership in passing this very important legislation.  The immediate return of $1.8 million to Westchester County is a tremendous savings but it will be dwarfed by the savings that will be achieved through a comprehensive and proactive energy policy applied throughout county operations.”

 

The Office of Energy Conservation will be a part of the administration and the Energy Director will be appointed by the County Executive.  "This simple reform was a no brainer.  In one broad stroke we have eliminated an outdated bureaucracy and set Westchester on a committed path of environmental sustainability and cost savings for taxpayers, and I want to thank Chairman Kaplowitz for his partnership in helping to get this done," said Astorino.

 

County Executive Astorino is expected to appoint Tim Carey who was the Executive Director of COWPUSA to the Energy Director position.  Mr. Carey also served as the Chief Operating Officer of the New York Power Authority (NYPA) a statewide public power utility, which provides up to one-quarter of New York State’s electricity.  Mr. Carey also served five terms as a Westchester County Legislator from 1984-1993.

 

The two pieces of legislation will be on the agenda for the regular BOL meeting tonight, Monday, April 27th.

 

Live streaming video of the meeting on the BOL website can be viewed at, http://www.westchesterlegislators.com/

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Dear Friends and Neighbors, If your summer plans include sending a child to sleep-away camp or preparing your college-bound student for dorm living, the county health department has a vaccine that cou


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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: April 28th, 2015
CONTACT: T.J. McCormack, 914-962-2624
MEDIA ADVISORY
FOR THURSDAY
APRIL 30th

JOINT SENATE TASK FORCE
ON HEROIN AND OPIOID ADDICTION
COMES TO YORKTOWN
YORKTOWN HEIGHTS, NY -The first of a series of statewide forums being held by the bipartisan Joint Senate Task Force on Heroin and Opioid Addiction is scheduled to begin this Thursday at an event in Yorktown. The Task Force is also meeting in Rochester, Lewiston, Albany and additional communities to examine the issues created by increased heroin abuse that is causing hundreds of deaths in communities across the state.

The Task Force is co-chaired by Senator Terrence Murphy, Senator Robert Ortt, chairman of the Senate Committee on Mental Health; and Senator George A. Amedore, Jr., chairman of the Senate Committee on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse.

Senator Terrence Murphy: Fighting to Win the War on Heroin
Heroin Task Force:
Fighting to Win the War on Heroin

The forums will provide an opportunity for Senators to solicit input from stakeholders and experts and use the information collected to develop recommendations for legislative action. Lawmakers say that recent opiate statistics show a pressing and urgent need to find a solution to this statewide epidemic. 

The details for THURSDAY's event are as follows:

WHO: Joint Senate Task Force on Heroin and Opioid Addiction

WHAT: Legislative hearing on heroin and opioid abuse

WHEN: *This Thursday*, April 30th
7:00 p.m.

WHERE: Mildred E. Strang Middle School Cafeteria
2701 Crompond Rd, Yorktown Heights, NY 10598

CONTACT: 914-962-2624

-30-

***ALL MEDIA ARE INVITED AND ENCOURAGED TO ATTEND***
**EXCELLENT PHOTO AND INTERVIEW OPPORTUNITIES AVAILABLE**
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On Tuesday, April 28, 2015 4:54 PM, Assemblyman Steve Katz wrote:

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: April 28, 2015
Contact: Tara Keegan, 845-628-3781, Katz4NY@gmail.com
 
KATZ: FISCAL TRANSPARENCY MEASURE KILLED BY MAJORITY
 
            Assemblyman Steve Katz (R,C-Yorktown) is a sponsor of Assembly Bill 5127, which requires that a statement of fiscal impact be attached with each piece of legislation.  The measure appeared before the Assembly today and was voted down by members of the Majority.
 
            "Every bill we vote on should have a fiscal impact statement laying out just how the project will be paid for in layman's terms," Katz said. "The people of New York deserve to know just how the Majority plans to pay for all of these projects. This isn't Monopoly money. This is money Albany takes from hardworking men and women across the state. This measure would have made it easier to see just how Albany works, and how they try to pass the buck to local governments. This legislation could have helped slow the exodus of people from our state. This is just another common-sense measure killed by the Majority."
 

Bazzo 04/29/15

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