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GOP, Rogue Senate Dems Nix Pulse Memorial Funds

GOP, Rogue Senate Dems Nix Pulse Memorial Funds

BY ANDY HUMM | Governor Andrew Cuomo’s state budget allocated a million dollars for his proposed memorial to the victims of the 2016 Orlando Pulse nightclub massacre and other hate crimes to be sited in Hudson River Park west of Greenwich Village. A design competition has already been conducted for the memorial, though no winner […]

Despite Constraints, Optimism About New Medical Marijuana Program

BY NATHAN RILEY | There was something fiendishly clever about Governor Andrew Cuomo’s last-minute gutting of a medical marijuana bill devised by the Legislature; he transformed it into a bureaucratic nightmare. Nonetheless, medical marijuana supporters cling to a grim optimism. This is the governor’s bill — it has to work or he will be responsible was […]

Conversion Therapy Ban Good Enough for Alito-Scalia-Roberts Court, But Not Klein-Skelos Senate

Conversion Therapy Ban Good Enough for Alito-Scalia-Roberts Court, But Not Klein-Skelos Senate

BY PAUL SCHINDLER | Amidst the shocked reaction to the Supreme Court’s Hobby Lobby ruling –– which opens up the possibility of religious exemptions being used as corporate get-out-of-jail free cards regarding employee nondiscrimination protections  –– there was a less-noticed bit of good news on the last day of the high court’s session. On June […]

Legislature Leaves Albany With Conversion Therapy Ban, GENDA Not Done    

Legislature Leaves Albany With Conversion Therapy Ban, GENDA Not Done    

BY PAUL SCHINDLER | The New York State Legislature went into 24-hour overtime on June 20 to conclude its regular 2014 session, but the State Senate still did not find the time or will to approve two bills of vital interest to the LGBT community. After a campaign of nearly a dozen years, the Senate […]

Critics Fault Medical Marijuana Compromises Cuomo Demanded    

Critics Fault Medical Marijuana Compromises Cuomo Demanded    

BY NATHAN RILEY | In the closing hours of the legislative session, Governor Andrew Cuomo signed off on an approach to medical marijuana legislation that will allow its use under carefully controlled circumstances. The law that was adopted as a result — reflecting his bottom lines but not those of Staten Island Independent Democratic Conference […]

With Three Republicans Reportedly on Board, IDC’s Avella Still Hopeful on “Conversion Therapy” Ban

With Three Republicans Reportedly on Board, IDC’s Avella Still Hopeful on “Conversion Therapy” Ban

BY PAUL SCHINDLER | As the State Senate slogged through its last scheduled day in its 2014 session, a member of the Independent Democratic Conference (IDC) that shares majority power with the Republicans, voiced hope that a measure to bar mental health professionals from performing “sexual orientation change efforts” on minors could yet get a […]

Sponsors, Advocates Remain Hopeful on “Conversion Therapy” Ban

Sponsors, Advocates Remain Hopeful on “Conversion Therapy” Ban

BY PAUL SCHINDLER | With just two days remaining until the State Legislature in Albany adjourns its 2014 session, the lead Senate sponsor of a bill that would ban mental health professionals from engaging in “sexual orientation change efforts” with minors remains hopeful that the measure could win approval. “The bill is definitely moving in […]

The Democratic Wing of Albany’s Democratic Party

BY PAUL SCHINDLER | In the November 2012 election, Democrats won a majority of the seats in the New York State Senate, which is something of a remarkable feat. In the last generation, only for a brief period after the 2008 election have Democrats wielded Senate control. That’s because each chamber of the Legislature dictates […]

No State Senate Vote on Transgender Rights

No State Senate Vote on Transgender Rights

BY PAUL SCHINDLER | More than a decade into the effort to approve a transgender civil rights law in New York State, the 2013 legislative session looked like it could be the charm. Polling touted by the Empire State Pride Agenda, the LGBT community’s Albany lobby group, showed 78 percent of respondents support the measure, the […]

Citing GENDA “Momentum,” Pride Agenda Touts Ray Kelly Endorsement

Citing GENDA “Momentum,” Pride Agenda Touts Ray Kelly Endorsement

BY PAUL SCHINDLER | It’s been more than a decade since New York State enacted a gay rights law –– one that failed, however, to provide protections based on gender identity and expression as well. But, now, with the State Legislature in the final few days of its 2013 regular session, the Empire State Pride Agenda, […]

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