Below please find the weekly ACTION ALERTS from our legislative action team. Congress is on recess this week and next, so to some extent, our federal legislative focus shifts from phone calls about upcoming votes to trying to track down Katko, Schumer, Gillibrand, and their staff in person. But we’ll still do some phone-calling as well, and we’ll also be highlighting some key state and local issues of concern. As always, we try our best to keep this info current, but will post updates as needed to the CNY Solidarity website, along with the various social media channels linked at the bottom of this message.
We’re starting a voter registration task force. The goal is to plan, coordinate, and execute a sustained voter registration campaign throughout the district. If you are interested in joining the group, please email Dana Balter firstname.lastname@example.org.
Also, one announcement from our state legislative action team: Assembly Member Bill Magnarelli’s wife passed away last Thursday, so we’re recommending no calls to his office this week (unless to offer sympathy) since they’ll be inundated with condolence phone calls.
Monday (April 10): Two phone-calling actions (1 state, 1 federal), plus an in-person forum this evening
Just say no to unilateral presidential war-making
On April 6, President Trump launched Tomahawk missles into Syria without seeking congressional approval. Click here for further info. If you are concerned about this action, please call Rep. Katko’s Syracuse (315-423-5657) or Auburn (315-253-4068) offices, ask for his views on the matter, and indicate your support for a robust congressional check on unilateral presidential war-making. Indeed, you might demand that Congress cut its recess short and return to session to exercise such oversight. While you’re at it, ask also for a lifting of the ban on Syrian refugees. As always, identify yourself as a constituent, tell a personal story if you have one, and be polite to congressional staff.
Support Green Light NY legislation
Please call your state senator and demand support for the Green Light NY legislation, which would allow undocumented immigrants to obtain drivers’ licenses, marked specifically for driving only. Without licenses, immigrants often have difficulty getting to work, buying groceries, taking their children to school, or going to the doctor. Moreover, when immigrants don’t have access to licenses, a routine traffic stop can lead to deportation and the separation of families. Extending licenses to immigrants will make our roads safer and lead to a stronger New York economy due to fewer uninsured drivers. More details here. Also, please support the Dream Act, proposed NYS legislation providing state financial aid for college students who are undocumented immigrants brought to the US as children. If the license fees resulting from Green Light legislation were used to fund the Dream Act, undocumented immigrants would fund college financial aid for undocumented immigrants. It may make both pieces of legislation gain more support. Another legislative action to protect undocumented immigrants is the Liberty Act which essentially makes NYS a Sanctuary State. Most of us are represented in the state Senate by David Valesky (315-478-8745) or John DeFrancisco (315-428-7632), but if you’re not sure whose district you’re in, click here and enter your address to find out.
Support safe and equitable transportation for Syracuse City school students
Tonight at 5:30pm, a planning forum on the school busing issue will be held at Henninger High School, 600 Robinson St. in Syracuse. Currently, many students have to walk more than 1.5 miles to school, including in winter weather. We encourage folks to attend to learn more about the need for increased funding for school transportation.
Tuesday (April 11): Two phone-calling actions (1 state, 1 federal), plus another in-person forum this evening
Still saying no to unilateral presidential war-making
On the Syria bombing front, we need to pressure Democrats as well as Republicans. If you called Rep. Katko yesterday to demand firm congressional oversight of President Trump’s unilateral warmaking, please do the same today for Sen. Schumer (315-423-5471) and Sen. Gillibrand (315-448-0470).
Support NY voting rights
Please call your state senators and ask that they support voting rights reform. If you want a script, try this: “I’m calling to express my full support for statewide voting reforms that would increase voter turnout and make our elections more accessible to more people. And it makes sense for the savings obtained by holding local/state/federal primaries all on one day be used to fund early voting, no-excuse absentee ballots, more accessible/readable ballots and automatic voter registrations at DMV with drivers’ license applications and renewals.”
We’ve listed phone numbers here for the State Senators who represent most of us, but if you’re not sure whose district you’re in, click here and enter your address to find out:
– State Senator David Valesky: 315-478-8745
– State Senator John DeFrancisco: 315-428-7632
Support south-side neighbors in Syracuse
At 7pm, Syracuse United Neighbors (SUN) will be meeting at the Southwest Community Center, 401 South Ave in Syracuse. The meeting will be attended by staff from Katko, Schumer, and Gillibrand’s offices and will include discussion of recent changes to mandatory flood-insurance zones, an issue of significant concern to a number of south-side residents in Syracuse. At our community outreach meeting at the Dunbar Center on March 26, and again at the April 9 meeting at St. Lucy’s, folks from SUN encouraged CNY Solidarity members to attend in support.
Wednesday (April 12): Three local educational opportunities—in Palmyra, in Syracuse, and on the phone
Support health care for all
From 6-7:45 pm, the Wayne County Citizens Response Network is hosting a Forum on the Future of Health Care at the Palmyra Library, 402 E. Main St. 14522.
Local government consolidation in Onondaga County
From 7-8:30pm, SU’s Maxwell School is hosting a debate on the issue of consolidation (i.e., whether the Syracuse city government should be merged with Onondaga County). Many Syracuse residents are concerned that the proposed consolidation will effectively disenfranchise folks in the city. The debate will feature Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner and Onondaga County Comptroller Robert Antonacci arguing against consolidation, and Jim Walsh, former member of Congress, and William Byrne, chairman of the board of Byrne Dairy, arguing in favor. The event is free and open to the public, and there will be opportunities for attendees to participate.
Conference call with Alliance for Quality Education (AQE) on state budget
At 7pm, AQE is holding a statewide conference call to provide a budget update and planning discussion. Governor Cuomo has been working hard to get funding for privately run charters instead of fully funding our public schools. That isn’t right! Join the call to hear from AQE organizers about next steps for putting pressure on the Governor and state legislators to demand just and equitable funding for public schools. Click here to register.
Thursday (April 13): Top priority today, for everyone in the 24th congressional district, is to make your way to Oswego for tonight’s town hall. We want to fill the room!
Oswego Town Hall
6:30-8:30pm, McCrobie Building, 41 Lake St., Oswego 13126.
Organized by We the People: Oswego Indivisible. Rep. Katko has declined to attend. People are welcome to come from throughout the 24th Congressional District. Issues of focus are Healthcare, Immigration, LGBT Equality, and the Environment.
CARPOOLING FROM SYRACUSE AVAILABLE
We could still use a few more people willing to drive – maybe someone from the south/southwest side, one from north/northeast side and maybe someone from the northern suburbs. If you are interested in driving please contact Wendy Yost at: email@example.com or 315-474-0688.
To arrange a ride, please contact the driver leaving from your area:
Leaving from Eastside of Syracuse, Room for 3
Leaving from downtown Syracuse and points West, Room for 3
Why not save gas and get to know someone new?
Friday (April 14):
Another great educational opportunity in Syracuse!
From 3-7pm, Radical Bureaucrats will be hosting Sustaining Action: A Teach-In at Syracuse University’s Maxwell School, Eggers Hall, room 200. Free and open to the public.
Saturday (April 15):
10-11am, Syracuse Federal Building, 100 S. Clinton St. Syracuse, NY 13202
In solidarity with marches being planned across the country, New Feminists for Justice has organized this event at the Federal Building with the support of CNY Solidarity and others. We demand that President Trump release his taxes now! We demand tax fairness for all! March will begin at 10 am at James M. Hanley federal building in downtown Syracuse.
Sunday (April 16)
Today being Easter Sunday, there will be no CNY Solidarity meeting this week. Whether or not you’re celebrating Easter, take the day for yourselves and your families.
Save the date for these upcoming events:
April 22: March for Science—Syracuse
April 29: People’s Climate March
May 1: Strike – Huelga Primero Mayo
Today and every day, be sure to follow us online and on social media!
Check out our website: www.cnysolidarity.org