Dear Friends:

I hope you and your family are staying safe during the winter months.

This week, the Westchester State Senate Delegation announced two opportunities for constituents and advocates to testify virtually about the 2021-2022 Executive Budget proposal. Pre-registration is required to testify. Click here to register. Additional information about the Budget Forums is included below.

On Tuesday, January 26th, my Senate colleagues and I built on the election reforms we adopted earlier this month by passing a series of bills to protect New Yorkers' health and the democratic process during the pandemic. Included in this package was my bill, S.1632, to allow voters to apply for absentee ballots in village elections based on concern for personal health, as was allowed in the recent primaries and general election. Read more about the full package of election reforms adopted this week in the section below.

After a great deal of activism from local families, my colleagues, and me, on Friday, January 22nd, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced that counties would have the authority to decide whether "higher risk" sports such as football, wrestling, and basketball would be allowed to resume. On Wednesday, January 27th, Westchester County and other counties throughout the Hudson Valley jointly decided to authorize "higher risk" sports to proceed effective February 1, 2021 at the discretion of individual school districts. I thank Governor Andrew Cuomo and County Executive George Latimer for taking into account the physical, social, and emotional needs of students who participate in these activities, and their families. Click here for the NYS Department of Health guidance for "higher risk" sports.

On Wednesday, January 27th, Governor Cuomo lifted all orange-zone and yellow-zone micro-cluster designations and restrictions that were in place in some areas of the district and Westchester County, including Port Chester and Yonkers. Some yellow-zone restrictions remain in effect in New York City and other parts of the state. Maps of the remaining micro-cluster zones throughout the state are available here. Click here for a list of restrictions for within micro-cluster designated areas.

On Thursday, January 28th, my colleagues and I hosted the Joint Legislative Public Hearing on the 2021-2022 Executive Budget Proposal regarding Elementary & Secondary Education. Click here to watch the full hearing.

This Saturday, January 30th, from 11:00 AM to 2:00 PM, my Youth Advisory Council will be outside of the YWCA White Plains & Central Westchester for a Coat & Toiletries Drive in commemoration of the MLK Day of Service. Please join us if you are able to donate. More information about this effort is included below and a flyer is available here.

As always, if there is anything my office can assist you with, please don't hesitate to email me at or call (914) 934-5250.

Warm regards,
Shelley B. Mayer
State Senator
37th District
New Legislation to Protect Election Integrity During Ongoing Pandemic
This week, my Senate colleagues and I adopted a package of bills to protect New Yorkers' health and election integrity during the coronavirus pandemic. Included in this package is my bill, S.1632, to allow for applications for absentee ballots in village elections based on concern for personal health. It is critical that voters in village elections are able to exercise their right to vote safely and without fear for their personal health. This bill also creates consistency between absentee ballot availability in local village elections and the rules for other elections, and it encourages participation in these critically important local races.

The bills advanced by the Senate Majority this week include:
  • Protecting New Yorkers’ Health by Expanding Access to Absentee Ballots (S.1632, Mayer): Allows voters to request an absentee ballot for upcoming village elections if they are concerned about contracting or spreading a disease that may cause illness to the voter or to other members of the public.
  • Reducing Petition Signature Requirements to Help Protect Public Health (S.2733, May): Reduces the number of signatures for designating and nominating petitions to thirty percent of the number required by law. 
  • Enabling Remote Participation for Political Party Designations (S.1705A, Hinchey): Enables political parties to use video or telephone conferencing to conduct party designations and nominations for village, town, and political party elections. 
  • Protecting Nursing and Long-Term Care Facility Residents’ Health while Guaranteeing Access to Absentee Ballots (S.1644, Cooney): Ensures that absentee ballots can be delivered to New York nursing homes and long-term care facilities without Board of Elections inspectors having to physically enter the premises. This will help prevent exposing residents to COVID-19 .

I look forward to continuing to work with my colleagues to build on these reforms that encourage civic participation while protecting New Yorkers' health.

NYS Senate Budget Forum Hosted Virtually by the Westchester State Senate Delegation
Please join the Westchester State Senate Delegation for virtual Budget Forums regarding the 2021-2022 NYS Executive Budget proposal.

New York State Senate Budget Forum
Hosted by the Westchester State Senate Delegation
Two Opportunities to Testify:
Thursday, February 11, 2021 - 2:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Tuesday, February 16, 2021 - 5:00 PM - 8:00 PM

Pre-Registration is Required to Testify:

The events will be streamed live on Facebook:
(A Facebook account is not required to watch.)

We welcome anyone's opinion as written or oral testimony. Each speaker will have up to two (2) minutes to speak. If you or someone you know would like to submit testimony ahead of or after the event, it can be submitted to Click here for a flyer to share with interested friends and neighbors.

Sign Up for Westchester County Department of Health Alerts About Vaccine Availability
The Westchester County Department of Health has launched an alert system to let eligible residents know when additional vaccines become available. Click here to sign up.

To be clear, this system will not sign you up for an appointment. This will only sign you up to be alerted when there are additional appointments available.

If you are 65-years-old or over, you are eligible for the vaccine according to Phase 1B. To look through the list of those who are currently eligible to receive the vaccine under Phase 1A and Phase 1B, click here.

MTA Launches Living Memorial to Honor Transit Workers Lost to COVID-19
New York's MTA family has faced unimaginable loss during the Coronavirus Pandemic. To date, 136 MTA employees have passed away due to COVID-19. To honor the lives lost, the MTA has launched a visual memorial using photographs shared by family members. The memorial is titled "TRAVELS FAR" after a poem by Tracy K. Smith, former U.S. Poet Laureate, that was commissioned for this project. Click here to watch the 8-minute video memorial.

What you gave—
brief tokens of regard,
soft words uttered
barely heard,
the smile glimpsed
from a passing car.

Through stations
and years, through
the veined chambers
of a stranger’s heart—
what you gave
travels far.

We are forever indebted to the essential workers who braved the risks of the virus, went to work, did their job well, all so that our communities could function. My thoughts are with the families of all of those who we lost.

Westchester County Department of Public Safety Hiring Seasonal Park Rangers
The Westchester County Department of Public Safety is accepting applications for Seasonal Park Rangers to patrol county parks this summer. First-time park rangers are paid $16 per hour. Salaries are higher for those who have worked as a ranger for the County before. Applicants must be at least 19-years-old, a U.S. citizen, a high school graduate, and possess a valid New York State driver's license by the time of appointment. Click here to find out more and to apply. The deadline to submit an application is February 19, 2021.

January 30: Coat & Toiletries Drive
Sponsored by Senator Shelley Mayer's Youth Advisory Council
In honor of the MLK Day of Service, my Youth Advisory Council is organizing a Coat & Toiletries Drive on Saturday, January 30th from 11:00 AM to 2:00 PM at the YWCA White Plains & Central Westchester, 515 North Street, White Plains, NY 10605.

Suggested Donations:
Coats (adult sized, new or gently used)
Soap, Toothpaste, & Toothbrushes
Socks, Gloves, & Cloth Face Masks

Collection will take place in the rear parking lot of the YWCA White Plains & Central Westchester. Volunteers wearing face masks and gloves will collect donations from the car. No need for donors to step out of their vehicles. All donations will benefit people in need working with the Westchester Labor Alliance (WLA), a coalition of 5 community-based worker centers. WLA is committed to defending workers and fighting wage theft. Click here for a flyer to share with interested friends and family. If you have any questions about this event or are interested in joining the Youth Advisory Council, please email my staff member Perla Arellano at or call (914) 934-5250.
222 Grace Church Street, Suite 300
Port Chester, NY 10573
Phone: (914) 934-5250 --- Email: