Saturday, January 19, 2019

Dear Friend:

In her first speech as Leader, Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins promised that the State Senate will work to break down barriers and create opportunity. On the second day of the Legislative Session, I was proud to vote in favor of a momentous package of bills to increase voter access in New York State and shine a light on dark money in politics. Read more about the legislation in the section below.

Tuesday, January 15th was another exciting day in Albany as we voted on two bills which help the state meet its responsibility to the LGBTQ community. S.1046 bans conversion therapy for minors, and S.1047 provides transgender and gender-nonconforming individuals with the same protections guaranteed to other protected classes. Read more about both of these bills in the section below.

As always, if we can help you with an issue, please don't hesitate to reach out to my office at 914-934-5250 or [email protected].
Warm regards,
Shelley B. Mayer
New York State Senator
37th District

In This Issue


District Office
222 Grace Church Street
Suite 300
Port Chester, NY 10573

The 37th State Senate District includes the Cities of Yonkers, White Plains, Rye and New Rochelle; the Towns of Bedford, Eastchester, Harrison, North Castle, Mamaroneck, and Rye; the Villages of Bronxville, Larchmont, Harrison, Mamaroneck, Port Chester, Rye Brook, and Tuckahoe; and the unincorporated places of Katonah, Bedford Hills, and Armonk.


For far too long, outdated rules and regulations acted as barriers and kept voters from getting to the polls. The perception of impropriety due to the influence of dark money in politics also contributed to cynicism among voters and discouraged them from participating in the political process. We know from the experiences of other states that if we increase voter access and shine a light on government, we increase voter participation. I am thrilled that we were able to get the following reforms passed at the start of the 2019 legislative session. 

  • Early Voting: Establishes an Early Voting system to permit eligible voters in NYS to vote in person during a designated period (S.1102, Senator Zellnor Myrie).
  • Same-Day Voter Registration: Amends the state constitution to remove the ten-day advance voter registration requirement, subject to second passage by the next legislature and approval by a statewide referendum (S.1048, Deputy Majority Leader Michael Gianaris).
  • No Excuse Absentee: Amends the state constitution to allow for any voter to request to vote by mail without declaring a reason, subject to second passage by the next legislature and approval in a statewide referendum (S.1049, Senator Leroy Comrie).
  • Voter Pre-Registration: Enables 16- and 17-year olds to pre-register to vote and requires local boards of education to adopt policies to promote student voter registration and pre-registration (S.1100, Senator David Carlucci).
  • Closing the LLC Loophole: Amends the Election Law to hold LLC's to the same aggregate contribution limit of $5,000 that applies to corporations. The amendment would require the disclosure of the identity and proportion of ownership of all direct and indirect owners of the membership interests in the LLC. This legislation also amends the Election Law to require all contributions made to political committees or campaigns by an LLC be attributed to each member of the LLC in proportion to the member's ownership interest (S.1101, Senator Brian Kavanagh).
  • Consolidation of Federal and State Primaries: Saves taxpayer dollars by making state primary elections the same day as federal primary elections. It also ensures that New York State's election law complies with the federal Military and Overseas Voter Empowerment (MOVE) Act (S.1103, Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins).
  • Voter Registration Transfer: Requires the State Board of Elections to transfer the registration and enrollment of a voter to wherever they move in NYS (S.1099, Senator David Carlucci).
A few of the bills, because they amend the state constitution, will need to be passed again during the next legislative session, and then voted on by New Yorkers in a statewide referendum, in order for them to become law. The remaining bills were delivered to the Governor for his signature. 


On Tuesday, January 15th, I was extremely proud to vote in favor of two bills that meet the state's responsibility to guarantee all New Yorkers, regardless of their sexual or gender identity, equal protection and dignity under the law. 

The Gender Expression Non-Discrimination Act, S.1047 expands protections for transgender and gender-nonconforming individuals in New York State's anti-discrimination laws providing them with the same protections guaranteed to other protected classes. Every New Yorker deserves the opportunity to live free of discrimination in their workplace, housing, and daily life.

The second bill passed on Tuesday, S.1046, bans mental health professionals from engaging in conversion therapy with minors. We have known for decades, and the majority of mental health professionals have accepted, that being lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender is not a disease or disorder but simply another form of gender or sexual expression. This bill protects our LGBTQ minors from the harmful effects of conversion therapy. 

Thank you to the many brave LGBTQ people who have entered public life and have changed minds and hearts on these important issues. Both bills have been delivered to the Governor and await his signature. 

Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie and State Senator Shelley Mayer looking over the new, state-of-the-art athletic field at Roosevelt High School.

On Friday, January 11th, along with my colleagues, I was happy to celebrate the re-opening and dedication ceremony for the new Tony DeMatteo Turf Field & Athletic Facility and Mayor Angelo R. Martinelli Auditorium at Roosevelt High School in Yonkers. Thank you to Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie for securing a significant portion of the funds used for the renovations. As Chair of the State Senate Education Committee, I will continue to work with my colleagues and the Governor's office to secure additional funding and resources for our public schools.

Julie Cupertino; State Senator Shelley Mayer; and Kelly McAvoy-Giarrusso.

On Friday, January 18th, I was glad to present two exceptional teachers from the 37th district with proclamations for earning a Gold Standard Award from the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards. I thank Julie Cupertino, Yonkers School 5, and Kelly McAvoy-Giarrusso, White Plains High School, for their hard work and dedication.