Material Matters - Fall 2012 - (Page 11)

LEGISLATIVE NEWS By Fred Hiffa and Megan Osika Ostroff, Hiffa and Associates THE 2011-2012 REGULAR legislative session concluded on June 21st. In this year’s enacted budget Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo and the Legislature recognized the need to provide increased support for our transportation infrastructure by creating the NY Works Program, which brought the Department of Transportation’s (DOT) 2012-13 Capital Program to $2.7 billion. In addition, an agreement was made that the next Capital Program will be multiyear (the NY Works Taskforce will be releasing their recommendations for the 2013-2015 plan on September 1st) and that the DOT’s public reporting requirements will be reinstated. Governor Cuomo, Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli and Attorney General Eric Schneiderman are not up for election in November as they are currently completing the second year of their four-year terms. U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D) is being challenged by Wendy Long (R). As of their July filings, Senator Gillibrand has more than $10 million cash on hand, while Wendy Long has just over $100,000. Long is considered a smart, credible candidate but without a fundraising advantage the race will be an uphill battle. While Governor Cuomo isn’t on the ballot this fall, he continues to raise record levels of campaign funds. In the first six months of 2012, his campaign committee reported raising $5.8 million and $19.3 million cash on hand. The Governor’s popularity has continued and his polling numbers remain very strong. A July 17th Siena College Poll showed 69% viewed him favorably and 22% unfavorably. Every two years the entire State Legislature (213 seats as of Election Day 2012) is up for election. This fall your Congressional members, State Senators and Assembly members are running in “new” districts. Every 10 years the districts have to change to reflect population shifts based on the latest census numbers. This year, New York will lose two congressional seats dropping from 29 to 27, the State Senate will add one seat going from 62 to 63 seats and the Assembly will remain the same at 150 seats. If you want to view the new districts you can see them at In the Assembly, Democrats have a two-to-one majority (101/49). By most accounts the question in the Assembly isn’t if the Democrats will remain in control after the elections but rather how many seats may be gained/lost. The majority party in each house had total control over how the new lines/districts were redrawn, so the Assembly Democrats are running in districts of their own making. The Senate is a very different story as the Republicans hold a slim two-seat majority (33-29). In 2008, when President Obama overwhelmingly won New York, he also helped the Senate Democrats take control of the Upper House for the first time in 50 years. In 2010, with strong support from NYMaterials members, the Republicans regained control of the chamber by one seat. They have since added an additional member to their conference in a 2012 special election. As of their July campaign committee filings, the Senate Republicans had $5.4 million cash on hand and no debt. On the other hand, Senate Democrats had $750,000 cash on hand and are $1.4 million in debt. While the Republicans are strongly favored to retain control, the contested races are expected to be tight. Two advantages for the Senate Republican Majority are that Governor Cuomo has not publicly supported the Senate Democratic Conference retaking control nor has he financially supported them. Additionally, four Democrat Senators have broken from their Conference creating the Independent Caucus, which very often votes with the Republicans. We are currently tracking more than 400 bills for the Association. In 2012 we continued our educational outreach efforts to members of the legislature on behalf of the construction materials industry and are pleased to report that none of the bills that are of major concern have passed. Please contact us at (518) 436-6202 if you have any questions or would like the current status of any legislation. ● Material Matters • Fall 2012 11

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Material Matters - Fall 2012

Breaking the Bottlenecks
Glacial Materials Goes Emerald Green
The System Works
Giving HMA Driveway Advice
Promotion Doesn’t Cost – It Pays
Exposed Aggregate Pervious Concrete
Stuyvesant Falls Hydroelectric Plant: Steel Fiber Reinforcement in Action By Dan Casale

Material Matters - Fall 2012