ISSUES

TAXES

James has voted for and passed two major tax cuts during his time in the Assembly, resulting in the lowest middle-class income tax rates in 70 years. He knows there's more work to be done, especially on property taxes, which is why he's pushing to make sure Wall Street and billionaires pay their fair share - so middle-class families can catch a break.

As an Assemblyman, James also co-sponsored legislation to repeal the onerous MTA payroll tax. In the State Senate, he'll continue fighting until this fundamentally unfair tax is done away with once and for all.

KIRYAS JOEL

When Kiryas Joel has tried to railroad other communities in Orange County, James has often times been the lone elected official in Albany to say "not so fast." He authored and passed legislation over KJ's objections to hold the annexation process far more accountable and has been an outspoken critic of unsustainable growth. In the Senate, James will continue to fight to make sure every community plays by the same set of rules.

CORRUPTION

James is the only candidate who will fight to clean up corruption in Albany and make sure that our leaders are putting Hudson Valley residents ahead of their own bottom lines. James helped pass legislation to strip taxpayer-funded pensions away from politicians who are convicted of a felony. Unlike his opponent, James also supports a ban on outside income for state legislators as well as efforts to remove big money from campaigns.

During his time in the Assembly, James also authored legislation to hold real estate transactions more accountable by requiring anonymous LLCs that purchase residential property to disclose who their real owners are - because everyone deserves to know who their neighbors are.

EDUCATION

James has championed a strong public education, delivering record funding for the schools he represents as an Assemblyman. In addition to leading the successful fight to deliver universal full-day kindergarten in New York State, he stood up to his own party when he voted against a teacher evaluation system that was punitive and would lead to more teaching to the test. 

As State Senator, he’ll work every day to ensure that Hudson Valley schools get their fair share of funding, stand strong against the misuse and overuse of standardized testing, and fight to improve the Governor's Excelsior Scholarship that only benefits 4% of SUNY and CUNY undergraduates.

INFRASTRUCTURE

James has focused on advancing our region's infrastructure while in the Assembly, improving a significant number of state roads and bridges across the district. He successfully secured funding to resurface Routes 6, 9W, 17 N/S, 32, 207, and 218 as well as the Palisades Parkway. James also ensured a number of major west-of-Hudson projects were included in the recent MTA capital plan and will continue to fight for our commuters.

FIGHTING SPECIAL INTERESTS

James has always stood up to predatory insurance companies, big banks, the pharmaceutical industry, and runaway corporate welfare. That's why he's sponsored legislation to re-instate the Wall Street "bank tax," authored bills to hold insurers responsible to a timely response following natural disasters, and has called to shift economic development dollars from big corporations to small businesses. 

 

In the State Senate, James will continue to hold these special interests accountable and always put people - not profit - first.

ENVIRONMENT

James successfully lobbied for the state to pull CPV's power plant permit, fought to make sure the cleanup of dirty PCBs in the Hudson River continues, and has delivered historic increases to important programs like the Environmental Protection Fund. 

He's also a strong supporter of preserving open space and has fought to protect our natural resources from over-development.

SENIORS

Over the past six years in the Assembly, James has stood up to those who have tried to cut the Enhanced STAR program and other benefits that seniors rely on. When he gets to the Senate, he'll continue to fight for tax relief, stop consumer scams that prey on seniors, and push to keep housing affordable for seniors on a fixed income. James also successfully worked to save Valley View Nursing Home when adversaries tried to sell the facility to the highest bidder.

DISABILITY RIGHTS

James has been a consistent champion for disability rights. In the Assembly, he served as Chairman of the Task Force on People with Disabilities and authored a constitutional amendment to include disability rights under the equal protection requirement. James also introduced and enacted a new law that ensures students with disabilities have the opportunity to participate in high school graduation ceremonies.

OPIOID CRISIS

James has been a strong advocate for combating the opioid crisis by improving access to treatment. He co-sponsored legislation that requires hospitals to create staff training programs on how to identify, assess, and refer people with substance abuse issues for treatment. James also helped pass legislation that prohibits insurance companies from imposing restrictions on coverage for people with substance abuse issues who seek inpatient treatment.

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