News from John McDonald, February 17, 2018


Budget hearings continued this week at the Legislature. Hearings focused on Local Governments and Health/Medicaid.

Mayors, Supervisors and County Executives traveled to Albany to discuss the challenges they face and how 2018-2019 Executive Budget Proposal impacts Local Government. Check out this clip with Mayor of the City of Albany, Kathy Sheehan as we discuss shared service as it relates to the tax cap.

At the Health Budget hearing I had the opportunity to speak with Dr. Howard Zucker, the Commissioner of the New York State Department of Health to clarify the proposed taxation on opioids and focus on greater treatment and recovery for addiction. Watch a small clip from that hearing here.


This month we remember and pay tribute to those who persevered through racial oppression, intolerance and injustice to pave the way for civil rights in our country; we also recognize those who have taken up the helm in today's challenging times.

While we celebrate the contributions black Americans have made in shaping our country for the better each and every day, National African American History Month serves as an opportunity to formally recognize their achievements. It also serves as a call to action to build on the legacies of those who came before by fighting for recognition and justice.

Please continue reading on my blog here.

Recently, the Department of Motor Vehicles has released new mental health public awareness license plates. These custom plates with the 'Support Mental Health Awareness' ribbon are a great way to spread the word about public awareness and ending the stigma of mental illness.

If you are interested in getting one of these custom license plates visit:

Join me on February 23rd at Siena College for a Celebration of Survivorship during the 18th Annual Pink Zone Game. Student athletes and coaches from the women's basketball team will escort local breast cancer survivors onto the court, recognizing them for their courageous battles against the disease.

For more information please visit or check out the poster below: