Assemblywoman Lupardo Welcomes Senate Majority Leader Malcolm Smith and Senator David Valesky to Binghamton

Visit includes meetings with local officials, business and community leaders

Assemblywoman Donna Lupardo (D-Endwell) welcomed State Senate Majority Leader Malcolm A. Smith (D-Queens) and Senate Vice President Pro-Tem David J. Valesky (D-Oneida) to the City of Binghamton today. Today’s visit marks the fourth Upstate city that Senator Smith has visited since being elected Majority Leader earlier this month.

The new leaders in the State Senate met with Assemblywoman Lupardo, Binghamton Mayor Matthew Ryan and Broome County Executive Barbara Fiala to discuss Upstate economic development and other local concerns. After their meeting, they met over 50 local business and community leaders from throughout Broome County at a reception arranged by Assemblywoman Lupardo.

“The top priority of the State Senate is to revive our state’s economy and enact policies that bring new jobs to the Southern Tier and all of Upstate,” said Senator Smith. “The City of Binghamton has some great leaders and the area’s colleges provide a significant base for economic growth and community revitalization. The Senate is committed to working with local officials to develop legislation and other initiatives that create new jobs and put our economy back on track.”

"In the three weeks since we have taken the Majority, my colleagues and I have been reaching out to Upstate mayors and other officials to discuss ways that the Senate can work hand in hand with them on a number of projects related to economic growth," said Senator Valesky. "This type of cooperation will be a hallmark of the new Senate and will mean good things for those of us who live here."

Among the topics of discussion at today’s meeting were:

  • The benefits of building a high speed rail system that connects Upstate communities with consumer markets statewide;
  • The importance of environmental protections and a maximum economic benefit to proposed natural gas drilling in the Marcellus Shale;
  • Closing budget shortfalls while protecting vital services and not pushing extra costs onto taxpayers;
  • Cleaning up brownfields throughout Broome County, and getting those properties back on the tax roll with businesses that bring new jobs;
  • Developing more affordable and efficient government through the consolidation of services; and,
  • Creating stronger ties between Binghamton University, Broome Community College and the community in a way that helps graduate remain local with a good paying job after completing their studies.

“I’m very happy that the new State Senate Majority Leader Malcolm Smith is coming to Binghamton,” said Assemblywoman Lupardo. “His visit shows the importance of the Southern Tier to the overall economic vitality of New York State.”

“I thank the Assemblywoman, Mayor, County Executive, and the people who live here for welcoming me to Binghamton and for leading a frank and insightful discussion,” Smith said.

“Though the challenges facing Binghamton may be similar to other upstate communities, it is so important to listen to the thoughts, ideas and concerns from the people who actually live here,” he concluded.