OLEAN – The completion of Route 219 as four lanes from Springville to the Pennsylvania border is among several issues that will be on the State Legislature’s front burner during 2014, according to State Sen. Catharine Young, R-Olean, who addressed members of the Cattaraugus County TEA Party on Monday in the Ash Community Center.
Young noted she will discuss funding for completion of Route 219 with Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo in the coming days. The project is viewed as a boost for bringing commerce to the region and key to a highway system that would run from the Canadian border to Florida.
Young called Route 219’s completion “only right” and pointed to major downstate infrastructure projects, including the Tappan Zee Bridge. She added that the completion of Route 219 as a four-lane highway would “be an investment in our area” and that she and her GOP colleagues in the Legislature would be pushing hard for the funding.
Young also pointed to other issues.
“We have some problems here, in New York,” Young said. “New York State is too expensive to do business. And our greatest export from our state? That would be our young people.” She said part of a proposal to be announced soon will be broad-based tax relief that simplifies the state tax code and cuts taxes for retirees.
Young also said she is opposed to Cuomo’s proposal for taxpayer-financed campaign funding.
“This is not the direction to go,” she said. “The governor’s plan gives your hard-earned tax money to candidates that you may not agree with, to run for office.”
Young reiterated her opposition to the controversial SAFE-Act gun-control law.
“As I drive my district, I am very happy to see all of the yard signs to repeal the NY SAFE Act,” she said. “We need to do more of that. Those signs are keeping the issue on people’s minds. The conversation is still going in Albany.”
But she noted that even if the Senate votes to repeal legislation it would not likely be approved in the Assembly, and Cuomo isn’t likely to approve it, either.
Young also said she will be working to restore full funding to the School Resource Officer program, which has been cut since the program was created during the Pataki administration.
“I will be pushing very hard to restore SRO budget funding in this budget year,” she said.