This blog is of, by and for the progressive members of our Jefferson County community. Our mission is to provide information about fellow progressives for all to view, to provide a forum for forward looking candidates and to offer other varied items of interest. Your opinion is important to this blog and if you wish to write us an item or send us a picture please email it to THIS BLOG IS NOT AN OFFICIAL BLOG OF THE JEFFERSON COUNTY DEMOCRATIC COMMITTEE

Monday, November 30, 2009

In the air--everywhere

During one of the quadzillion football games broadcast over the past few days one of the announcers cheerfully said to me right in my own family room in LaFargeville that he would like to send greetings to our US military in 177 nations across the world. It seems the game was being carried on Armed Forces Television. One hundred and seventy seven! And we are opposed to colonialism right?
Yeah right.

On the subject of even more military stuff here is Michael Moore. You know, that hated progressive geek that is uncannily right all the time wrote a letter to President Obama on the eve of his address at West Point. Here it is.

Chuck Schumer is JD's hero today. Remember back in 2006 when Dubai World was trying to take over the management and security detail for 22 US maritime ports. Enter Chuck. It was pretty much a done deal until Senator Chuckie started waving his arms and hollering. When the rhetorical smoke cleared Dubai backed out and AIG (and Haliburton) got the job. We all know that Dubai World is now falling flat on its financial fanny. Good work Chuck.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Governor Paterson's late Sunday afternoon PC

Press Conference that is. Here is how the Times Union put it up on their blog.
ALBANY -- Unable to get the Legislature to agree on how to address a $3.2 billion deficit, New York Gov. David Paterson on Sunday said he's taking $1.6 billion worth of temporary, emergency measures to cover the state's December bills.

Desmond hotels
While he continues to negotiate, he may have lost some leverage. Several lawmakers have sought the executive branch actions to provide more time to wait for revenues to rebound after Jan. 1 and to avoid Paterson's cuts to powerful special interests in public schools and hospitals.

"I feel that we have to start making the deficit reductions on our own, hoping the Legislature will join us," Paterson said in a teleconference with reporters. "This is the point where other states went off the cliff. This is where they should have acted and didn't."

Read more:

Ponder this

This Quotation comes from the masthead of local blogger Kelly Arsenault-price.

Dede on the big stage--Face the Nation

Click right here for a nationally televised discussion among Republicans on the value of the new 'BIG TEN' LITMUS TEST. JD thinks it is a totally ridiculous premise. Some elephants, like Dick Armey, want to take all innovative thought and slice and dice it so it fits into a very small partisan container.
As old time baseball pitcher Dizzy Dean once said to his manager about a particular stupid strategy, "That has two chances of working, very slim and none." This will make you feel better Dede

Saturday, November 28, 2009

DiNapoli to the NYS Senate--Act!

The Comptroller amplifies Governor Paterson's DRP position. He says we might be as much as four billion in the hole. JD translates that as meaning the leadership of the NYS Senate needs to stop posturing and actually do something.
This youtube was made seriously interviewing people standing in line at a Sarah Palin book tour event. Just a couple of thoughts from JD--1) The very same forces that made you popular (or unpopular) in the 7th grade still have a major influence on Presidential approval ratings 2) Sarah is a mile wide and an inch deep 3) yikes! some of these folks scare the bejeepers out of me.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Take a couple of minutes to reflect on this

Future Shock!

The Fox News Lineup in 2012

8:00 am: Fox and Friends: Now With More Fox and Less of Your Overbearing, Bleeding Heart, PETA-donating, Friends!

10:00 am: The Sarah Palin Variety House: Watch Sarah as she keeps a polar bear from eating her garbage!

11:00 am: What Wacky Things Has Our Wacky, Half-Cyborg President Done Now? Featuring an interview with Tim Geithner from prison!

12:00 am: FoxNews Health Tips: For a healthier choice, only choose potato chips as baked as Barack Obama was during college.

3:00 pm: Studio B: Julie Banderas licking a lollipop while the news ticker scrolls.

4:00 pm: Lou Dobbs Report: Lou talks about Lou's non-existent campaign to get some really handsome guy, also named Lou, elected President later this year.

5:00 pm: Glenn Beck: How to stockpile canned meat and fertile women.

6:00 pm: Actual news reporting.

7:00 pm: The Keith Olbermann Program: New arch-conservative Keith Olbermann blusters behind his 1950's glasses against the abuses of whoever cut him off in traffic today.

8:00 pm: The O'Reilly Factor: Yelling.

9:00 pm: Colmes. Alan talks to Senator Levi Johnston (D-AK) about his affair with Michelle Obama.

10:00 pm: Greta van Susteren Scowling at the Camera While She Thinks She's Smiling.

1:00 am: Red Eye: Pretty much just pornography now

Read more:
Unashamedly lifted from Bill's Oswego Democrat.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

The NY Senate--a model of corruption--according to NYBri

For years this blog (if you count all the various permutations that preceeded it) has been a member of a liberalish group calling itself the Progressive Blogs of NY. One of the most interesting members of this mainly metro menagerie is Brian Keeler known to us as NYBri. Brian recently was employed by the NY State Senate. Ooops. That might have been a mistake. In a Daily Kos post today NYBri lashed out at his former employer. Please understand JD doesn't fully endorse his viewpoint, but that doesn't dimish the fact that his is an interesting post. Here you go




Mayor Michael Bloomberg, Police Commissioner Ray Kelly, the Brady Campaign, New Yorkers Against Gun Violence Join Lawmakers to Introduce Gun Trafficking Prevention Act

Measure Will Give Law Enforcement Tools to Investigate and Prosecute Gun Traffickers and Their Criminal Networks, While Protecting Responsible, Law-Abiding Gun Owners

New York, NY – Joined by some of the nation’s top anti-crime leaders, U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand and Representative Carolyn McCarthy today announced a new measure authored by Gillibrand and McCarthy aimed at eliminating the steady flow of illegal guns into New York. Nearly 90 percent of the guns used in gun crimes in New York City come from out of state, and approximately 90 percent of these guns are illegal. Standing alongside Mayor Michael Bloomberg, Police Commissioner Ray Kelly, representatives from the Brady Campaign and New Yorkers Against Gun Violence, and the parents of victims who lost their lives from gun violence at The John Jay College of Criminal Justice, Senator Gillibrand and Representative McCarthy unveiled the Gun Trafficking Prevention Act of 2009, which will empower local, state, and federal law enforcement to investigate and prosecute gun traffickers and their entire criminal networks, while protecting responsible, law-abiding gun owners.

“By cracking down on illegal gun traffickers and their vast criminal networks, we can reduce gun violence and keep our children and families safe,” said Senator Kirsten Gillibrand. As a mother of two young children, I care deeply about keeping our families and neighborhoods safe and giving law enforcement the tools they need to eliminate illegal guns from the street and keep guns out of the hands of dangerous people. Congresswoman McCarthy has been the single leading force in Congress working to eliminate gun violence and I am pleased she has helped in writing this legislation.”

“Since I have come to Congress, reducing gun violence has been my top priority,” said Congresswoman Carolyn McCarthy. “By reducing the amount of guns that are trafficked, both into New York and across the southern border into Mexico, this bill will go a long way to not only making our neighborhoods safer but will also improve our homeland security. I was pleased to work with Senator Gillibrand on this legislation and look forward to working with her on the bill’s passage in the House and Senate. “

Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg said, “Senator Gillibrand and Congresswoman McCarthy’s legislation will improve our ability to rid our streets of the illegal guns that find their way into the hands of criminals to destroy families and lives. Too often, Congress has tied the hands of law enforcement with legislation like the Tiahrt Amendments, this legislation gives them the tools they need to crack down on illegal guns.”

Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, please welcome the brand new, hot off the griddle,
OFFICIAL blog of the Jefferson County Democratic Party. Its called North Country Democrat and is the product of The Chair, Sean Hennessey. Its OFFICIAL because Sean has deemed it such. We wish Sean the best. Click for it.

Attention all you Palinoids (like Watertown Mayor Jeff Graham). The affection you feel for the former Governor of Alaska may be tempered by this personal information flowing from
the trooper that Sarah tried to have fired. Here. Click here.

Jefferson's Leaning Left is taking a tilt against windmills. Here is Mr. Wiley's poetic soul flowing as a breeze off the lake:

a spanish developer said, it's quite funny

that, in the land of milk and honey

with the suckers over there

and using government welfare

i made a whole shit-load of quick money

The (really dysfunctional) Family

Be aware you are going to need 38 minutes to listen to this NPR report on 'The Family." The interview is with the author that blew the cover on the group of major, but wack job, politicos
living on C street in DC. Prepare to be appalled. Click it

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Every year I post the same picture at this season.
Why should this year be different? Happy Thanksgiving.

This is very similar to the informational quality I got from my history professors

Dede Faces the Nation

Directly from the heart of Gouverneur to the center of the news universe. Here is the lineup for Sunday's FACE THE NATION. It might be better for the North County if her claim to fame wasn't as a giant loser. What did she get? About 5% I think. In any event, here is the lineup courtesy of Ben Smith at Politico. We'll be watchin' Diedra.

With CBS News Chief Washington Correspondent
Bob Schieffer

NOVEMBER 29, 2009


Chairman, Armed Services Committee

Former House Republican Leader


Republican strategist

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Take note--JD disagrees with Obama on this one

Just in case you think this blog is a laydown for all Democrats on all issues think again.
The Obama administration is wrong on this one. AP reported it this way.
The Obama administration has decided not to sign an international treaty banning land mines. State Department spokesman Ian Kelly says the administration recently completed a review and decided not to change the Bush-era policy. More than 150 countries have agreed to the Mine Ban Treaty's provisions to end the production, use, stockpiling and trade in mines. Besides the United States, holdouts include: China, India, Pakistan, Myanmar and Russia.

Assemblywoman Russell: "Let’s put a book in
every kid’s hands this holiday."

Addie’s Books for Children promotes reading and literacy: Donation drop-offs at
Salmon Run Mall in Watertown and
Kinney Drugs in Canton

Assemblywoman Addie J. Russell (D-Theresa) is partnering with two social agencies in Jefferson and St. Lawrence Counties to further the joy of literacy through a new holiday book drive, “Addie’s Books for Children.”

The Assemblywoman is encouraging people to donate new and gently used books for children up to twelve years old. “I know children enjoy reading or having someone read to them. It is not only fun, but it is a positive activity,” she said. “Let’s put a book in every child’s hands this holiday. I encourage everyone to help by donating a book.” In the picture on the left Brad Mintener joins the manager of Kinney Canton

Katy Flanagan and in the Salmon Run Mall picture two dedicated volunteers man the famous CAPC "Angel Tree."

Boxes have been placed in two locations: In Jefferson County at the Salmon Run Mall in conjunction with the Community Action Planning Council’s Angel Tree, and in St. Lawrence County at the Kinney Drugs in Canton in conjunction with the Church and Community Program. CAPC and the Church and Community Program will distribute the donated books to children and families in their respective counties.

Sheri Wilcox leads the Church and Community program in Canton . She indicated, “I’m looking forward to this partnership with our Assemblywoman. I think the kids will love it.”

Melinda Gault the Executive director of the Watertown CAPC said, “We really welcome the idea of collecting and distributing children’s books to our client families this holiday season. Books coupled with toys is a fine, festive combination.”

Books can be dropped off at either location until Friday, December 11th in both counties.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Roger Taylor (Queen)--listen all the way to the end please

Here's your chance to vote in the 'Rudy' poll. Click here.

Here is a great post from blogger extraordinaire R. Wiley at Jefferson's leaning left

JD was so impressed we just plagiarized the whole thing!

Connecting the dots.

Three large and very active groups of taxpayers have come together to form this red zone that encompasses some of the most scenic land in the world. The red zone completely exposes the Golden Crescent and the Thousand Islands regions to one of the biggest government corporate welfare schemes to ever be pulled on the American taxpayer. So big, in fact, there are not even enough "on the edge" American corporate welfare mooches to pull the deals off, so they had to go foreign with companies like Iberdrola, Acciona, British Petroleum and the Australian, Upstate NY Power Corp. Carlyle Group of Washington has managed to wiggle in on us, too.

On the South tip of the red zone we have The Coalition for the Preservation of the Golden Crescent, Henderson. On the West corner, there is the Wind Energy Ethics Group, Cape Vincent, and up in the Northeast the red zone triangle is completed by the Concerned Residents of Hammond. The whole area of red is filled with reluctant citizens from Lyme, Orleans, Clayton and all the other Towns that have been targeted by our New York State Politicians and foreign wind developers as host communities for factories that provide power for downstate New York and the heavily populated Eastern Corridor.

The Red zone citizens are concerned with plummeting land values, destruction of the tourist trade, the prospect of living amongst giant factories, leaders giving everything we have away in the form of raw deal PILOTS, and the enacting of eminent domain when landowners refuse to cooperate with the foreign developer's plans for transmission lines.

Many Town Boards have become so conflicted by their members holding secret contracts with the developers, that they have been unable to see clearly enough to work on the behalf of or even identify what is best for all of citizens of the red zone.

Big decisions are in the hands of the Jefferson County Board of Legislators, now. Perhaps we can get them to listen at the Tuesday night meeting.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Senator Franken--some plain speaking on the Senate floor yesterday

Please take about ten minutes and watch Senator Al Franken on healthcare. He really is right you know.

This blog likes David Paterson even more after this letter to legislators written today

Dear Legislators:

One month ago, I presented a responsible $3.2 billion Deficit Reduction Plan that contained reductions across every area of State spending, including health care and School Aid. I proposed this series of difficult choices to help address the State’s severe revenue shortfall, which could threaten to delay State aid payments to school districts, health care providers, and local governments.

Since that time, we have worked together to try and craft a final agreement, but have not yet been successful. Unfortunately, this failure to act has put New York at risk for a number of dire fiscal consequences and raised serious questions among independent financial monitors.

On Friday, the Office of the State Comptroller issued a report titled: “New York State’s Cash Flow Crunch”. In it, Comptroller DiNapoli states: “The State’s continuing failure to address its worsening structural budget imbalance have combined to create a severe cash flow crunch.” Put simply, the State is running out of money. In my conversations with the Division of the Budget, we have begun to discuss a number of options for this eventuality, including delaying payments to school districts, non-profit providers, and local governments, among others.

On Thursday, Moody’s Investor Services also issued an analysis of the State’s finances, saying that, “If there is no action taken by the State to close the gap, or if action is taken but is largely-one-time in nature (therefore increasing the structural imbalance in the outyears)” our strong credit rating will be in danger of a downgrade. The Comptroller has echoed these concerns, imploring the State Legislature not to resort to “fiscal gimmicks or debt, which would only push the State’s budget problems into the future at a higher cost to taxpayers.”

Above all, Moody’s and Comptroller DiNapoli have indicated that we must focus our efforts on reducing spending. Moody’s warned that one of our State’s credit weaknesses are “high-recurring expenditure demands” and “spending pressures that contribute to chronic projected structural imbalances.” The Comptroller has also indicated that “New Yorkers understand difficult spending choices must be made . . . one-time revenue [does] nothing to address the State’s structural imbalance.”

It is clear that failure to address our deficit responsibly could have very real and serious potential consequences for taxpayers across New York. Time is running out and the costs of inaction will be felt in every corner of our State.

Payment delays could create a trickledown effect on local governments and service providers in every region of New York as those organizations continue to face similar revenue shortfalls of their own. A credit rating downgrade means it will be more expensive for the State to borrow money. As a result, more of our limited resources will be dedicated to paying back bondholders, rather than providing critical services.

There is only one path to avoid these unacceptable consequences – responsible, recurring spending reductions across every area of the budget.

I believe that any final Deficit Reduction Plan must include actions that are at least 40 percent recurring. Additionally, any consensus agreement must include reductions to health care and School Aid.

No one wants to cut health care or education. These are priorities for which I have fought my entire career. But given that they make up more than half of the entire budget, we simply have no other choice but to make reductions to health care and education if we want to demonstrate that we are serious about putting New York on the road to fiscal recovery. As other states that are now grappling with unmanageable deficits learned far too late, it is better to cut now, than gut later.

We must put politics aside and put the people of our State first — not the special interests. We must reach a responsible final agreement that protects our State’s finances and embodies the principles I have outlined above. The warnings are clear and those who choose to ignore them do so at their own peril. In the days ahead, I look forward to your cooperation as we make the difficult choices that are necessary to put New York’s fiscal house in order.


David A. Paterson

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Elana Levin is looking to hire--if you are interested

This is an item from the NY Progressive Blog Group
It's been a while since my last post as I've been buried in the wilds of ME, NH, NY, MA, NJ building state-based campaigns for national immigration reform. (You can check out our coalition at

We are staffing up in NH and NY with two different types of organizers, and so I wanted to share the descriptions here and see if any has any good referrals (much appreciated!)

We are looking to hire as early as Dec. 1.
In NH we are looking for someone who can be based in
Manchester and in NY we are looking for someone to be based in the Rochester or Buffalo areas.

I appreciate your help in spreading the word! Please feel free to forward these and post them whereever you see fit.
If you are interested her is Elana's
On a completely different topic...Could you call a Sarah Palin fan like Watertown Mayor Jeff Graham a Palinoid ?

Your weekly address

Friday, November 20, 2009

Assemblywoman Addie J. Russell asks Washington legislators to investigate North Country Veterans Clinic Switch

Today Assemblywoman Addie J. Russell asked Representative Bill Owens, and Senators Charles Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand to call for an investigation of the Veterans Administration’s decision to end Carthage Area Hospital ’s VA Clinic and to award a contract to Washington , D.C. based Valor Healthcare.

“I cannot understand why the VA would end a six-year operation with the second best customer service record in the state and bring in a Washington, D.C. outfit that has had issues in some of the other VA clinics that it operates,” said Assemblywoman Russell. “The VA has not even provided evidence that Valor Healthcare would offer superior or more cost effective service to Carthage . Hence, without this data, I question the appropriateness of shutting down a successful clinic that has been praised by veterans in our area, to begin a new one with no relationship to the North Country .”

Assemblywoman Russell said that closing a clinic in one community just to open one up in a neighboring community is not sound economic development either, especially in this case, as a portion of revenue realized by Valor would not stay in the local community but instead be sent to Washington. But the most compelling reason is that veterans are very satisfied with the Carthage Clinic turned services around for our veterans and having them reestablish with a new physician and medical team is very troublesome and stressful.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

A 35 second synopsis of Sarah on Oprah

Attention Teabaggers--Rudy's running!

Adama Brown of the NYS blogging fraternity wrote this today.
Yup, pretty much as expected. Rudy is going to run against Gillibrand
next year, which according to the
NY Daily News he thinks is going to
give him the platform to run for President in 2012. Anyone else think
he's delusional enough for him to believe that he could win New York in
that scenario?

Also, who wants odds that the teabaggers will furnish him with a primary

Assemblywoman Russell: In-state students deserve a break

In-state students shoulder burden while out-of-state students enjoy below average tuition costs

“After the recent Comptroller report on out-of-state tuition costs for SUNY schools I am dissapointed that the SUNY Board of Trustees would propose a 2% across the board tuition hike instead of proposing an increase to out-of-state students. Earlier this year, State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli released a report that found that compared to 29other public schools in 19 states, SUNY out-of-state tuition is $8,463 less than the average out-of-state tuition for these schools. In addition, the report said tuition increases for in-state SUNY students rose 231 percent between 1990 and 2009, while out-of-state tuition ONLY increased 165 percent. I think it would make more sense to protectNew York’s working families from any further tuition increases and instead make sure that out-of-state students pay their fair share.

“Why does the SUNY Board of Trustees feel it is necessary to raise tuition on our in-state students while out-of-state students enjoy well below average tuition costs? SUNY enrollments are currently at record levels. During these tough economic times, students are realizing the value of the top-notch education and affordable tuition rates at our SUNY institutions. To increase in-state tuition will only discourage students from staying in New York for their higher education and thereafter. I will not even consider any more in-state tuition increases until we raise out-of-state tuition significantly.”

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Cartoonist Mark Fiore invites you to learn to speak teabag. It isn't tough--click here

Monday, November 16, 2009


GLOW stands for an unofficial organization put together by the Democratic county chairs of Genesee, Livingston, Orleans and Wyoming Counties. (In the picture Senator Gillibrand is on the left and our assemblywoman Russell on the right.)

The GLOW Democratic Coalition is pleased to announce its endorsement of Senator Kirsten Gillibrand for her 2010 Senate race. The Chairs enthusiastically back her in the election and are especially pleased with Senator Gillibrand's work on behalf of residents in the GLOW region.

The GLOW Chairs singled out the work Senator Gillibrand has done for agriculture. "From being the first Senator from New York in nearly 40 years to serve on the Senate Agriculture Committee to the work she's done with the Department of Agriculture to get relief for dairy farmers, Senator Gillibrand has shown her understanding of how vitally important farmers and farming are to the economy of our counties," said Judith Hunter, the Livingston County Democratic Chair. Hunter also noted that Gillibrand had made a point of touring Coyne Farms in Avon during her extended visit to the region this August. Genesee County Chair Lorie Longhany was particularly pleased with the Senator's efforts to highlight the difficulties of the dairy industry. "Senator Gillibrand actually came to my county and held a hearing for her colleagues on the Senate Agriculture Committee on the dairy crisis right here in Batavia." Harold Bush, the Wyoming County Chair, added that "Senator Gillibrand has shown a real interest in helping our farmers in these very difficult times. Her visit to the Wyoming County Fair this summer wasn't just about photo ops or rides with her children. She came to find out what it was she could do to make things better." Orleans County Chair Jeanne Crane pointed out that "Senator Gillibrand understands the significance of fruit farming to the region, especially Orleans, and has done a lot with the Department of Agriculture on matters like school lunches that will help our county a great deal."

The GLOW Chairs also support the work that Senator Gillibrand has been doing for veterans, children, and on health care. "For someone who has been in the Senate less than a year, the amount of work she has done is phenomenal," said Hunter. "She has our complete support in next year's election. Upstate and rural New York have a great champion in Kirsten Gillibrand."

Maybe the Dem Chairs in Jefferson, Oswego, St. Lawrence and Lewis could similarly band together in coalition.
I suggest 'JOSL' (pronounced joss-el) as the new group's name. Just a suggestion mind you.
But it does seem sort of an appropriate moniker for the mild intramural shoving that sometimes takes place.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Cut and pasted from the Gouverneur Times this morning

Written by Assemblywoman Addie J. Russell
I have been meeting with my colleagues in Albany to work out a plan to cut an addition $3 billion from the current year’s budget. I continue to advocate for solutions that do not just shift the burden onto property taxpayers and local governments. We cannot and must not impose additional taxes and fees onto our working families whose budgets are already stretched to the breaking point. This year’s budget was filled with many tough decisions. But my opposition to the $2.1 billion dollars in proposed new taxes and fees helped to defeat most of those measures, saving our families hundreds of dollars and ensuring the continuation of the STAR property tax exemptions.

I look forward to receiving the petitions regarding the license plate fees and will carry them with me to Albany, along with the petitions to repeal the floor tax which I gathered earlier this year, to deliver the message of North Country residents that we cannot shoulder any more of the burden.

As we continue to open this year’s budget and hash out a deficit reduction plan, I will be a vocal advocate against any measures that disproportionately affect North Country working families. Today in Albany I proposed strategies including shrinking the overall size of state government even further, changing the way we purchase items such as computers and software to realize significant savings, and giving mandate relief to local governments and school districts.

I have also indicated to my colleagues the critical need to help our farmers and to focus on job retention initiatives using our existing economic development resources. During these tough economic times we must work to stabilize and preserve small businesses and farms, bolstering them so they can continue to do business in this state.

(JD editor's note. For a full version of Assemblywoman Addie's latest personally written op/ed piece scroll down a few stories. She wrote it late Thursday and it was media delivered on Friday.)

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Lawrence O'Donnell cutblocks the med insurance greedys

This isn't political but I thought you might enjoy it.

A porpoise trainer discovered that feeding seagulls to his porpoises will make them live forever. He went for a walk along the beach and grabbed two seagulls and brought them to the porpoises. As he arrived, he saw, sound asleep in his doorway, an old stodgy lion. He had to step across the lion, carrying the seagulls to feed to the porpoises so that they could live forever. As he did, police surrounded and arrested him. Of course the charge was transporting gulls across a staid lion for immortal porpoises.

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Aubertine Stands Up For North Country Farmers


Settlement Comes after Cuomo’s Undercover Investigation Revealed CVS Stores across the State Sold Expired Milk, Eggs, Medicines, and Baby Formula
Attorney General Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that his office has reached an $875,000 settlement with the national retail pharmacy chain CVS to end its sale of expired products - including over-the-counter drugs, baby formula, milk, and eggs - at stores across New York State.
The settlement concludes the lawsuit previously filed by the Attorney General in New York Supreme Court against CVS Pharmacy, Inc. for its pervasive sales of expired products and its breach of a prior settlement with the Attorney General in which it agreed to take measures to end such sales.
“New Yorkers should not have to worry that their neighborhood pharmacy is selling expired over-the-counter drugs that may be harmful to themselves or their families,” said Attorney General Cuomo. “Today’s settlement with CVS and our past settlement with Rite Aid - which total approximately two million dollars - send the message that companies have a responsibility to put the safety of their customers ahead of boosting their profits.”
The agreement with CVS is the result of the Attorney General’s statewide, undercover investigation of all major drug store chains in New York State. The probe uncovered an egregious pattern at two of the largest chains: CVS and Rite Aid. Statewide, the Attorney General’s investigation revealed that 142 CVS and 112 Rite Aid stores in over 41 counties sold expired products. This reflects 60 percent of the CVS stores visited and 43 percent of the Rite Aid stores visited. At the CVS stores, undercover investigators found that some items were being sold more than two years past their expiration dates.
Subsequent inspections by the Attorney General revealed that both CVS and Rite Aid continued to sell expired products even after the Attorney General’s advisory. In December 2008, the Attorney General reached a $1.3 million settlement with Rite Aid, which had approximately 710 stores in New York State as of the date of the settlement. CVS has approximately 432 stores in New York State.
As part of its settlement agreement with the Attorney General’s office, CVS has agreed to pay $875,000 in penalties, costs, and fees. According to the agreement, CVS will refrain from selling expired products, commit to specific policies and procedures designed to prevent the sale of expired products, obtain approval from the Attorney General before making material changes to such policies and procedures, and train CVS employees in identifying and removing expired products from store shelves. CVS stores in New York will undergo internal compliance checks for expired products. Any CVS store that fails compliance checks will pay a penalty of $2,500 per store. The settlement also requires CVS to post notices reminding customers to check the expiration and “sell by” dates of over-the-counter drugs, infant formula, milk, and eggs in the aisles in which these products are sold.
Consumers who purchase and use expired over-the-counter drugs, infant formula, milk, and eggs may suffer serious, even life-threatening consequences. Once an over-the-counter drug has passed its expiration date, there is no assurance that it is safe to the consumer or effective for its intended uses. Infants and children are particularly susceptible to the health risks from using expired products, especially expired infant formula, since it may not contain the nutrient levels required for proper infant development.
The case was handled by Assistant Attorneys General Mary Alestra and Laura J. Levine, under the supervision of Consumer Frauds and Protection Bureau Chief Joy Feigenbaum and Deputy Attorney General for Economic Justice Michael Berlin.


Governor signs Executive Order No. 30 Establishing the New York 2010 Census Complete Count Committee
Governor David A. Paterson has signed Executive Order No. 30, establishing the New York 2010 Census Complete Count Committee. The Committee will raise awareness of the 2010 Census and will work to maximize the participation of all New Yorkers. New York Secretary of State Lorraine Cortés-Vázquez kicked off the State’s 2010 Census Complete Count Campaign today at an event in the State Capitol.
“It is critically important for the future of New York that we assure a complete and accurate count of New York’s population in the 2010 Census,” Governor Paterson said. “Federal estimates suggest that more than 202,000 New Yorkers were not counted in the 2000 census – we can and we must do better. That is why I have instructed my administration to do everything possible to ensure a comprehensive count. This campaign is a real partnership between government, community, business and religious organizations. All New Yorkers must be counted.”
The census count is used to determine each State’s congressional representation for the next ten years and to establish new boundaries for congressional, State legislative and many local government districts. The federal government uses census data to allocate more than $400 billion in federal funds annually for community programs and services, such as education, housing and community development, health care, transportation and more. State, local and tribal governments use census information for planning and to allocate funds for new school construction, libraries and other public buildings, highway safety and public transportation systems, new roads and bridges, location of police and fire departments and many other projects.
Secretary of State Lorraine Cortés-Vázquez said: “State agencies have a unique opportunity to play a critical role in ensuring a successful count. Every state agency will work to spread the message that completing the Census is easy, safe and important. Furthermore, this campaign will allow us to better coordinate our resources to target efforts at historically undercounted communities -- immigrant, minority and low-income communities in particular. We are truly all in this together.”
Earlier this year, Governor Paterson and leaders of the State Assembly and Senate appropriated funds in the 2009-10 State Budget for services and expenses necessary for community outreach to assist in reducing the undercount in the 2010 federal Census. This program will provide grants to fund public education, community outreach and other activities targeted at hard-to-count and low response rate populations for promoting awareness of the 2010 Census, improving Census questionnaire mail back rates and encouraging cooperation with Census takers.
The Complete Count Committee comprises the heads of all State agencies and authorities. New York Census Action Council will coordinate the Committee’s work. The Council comprises the Secretary of State, who will serve as the Chair; the Governor’s Counsel; the Governor’s Deputy Secretary for Intergovernmental Affairs; the Commissioner of Economic Development; the Commissioner of Children and Family Services; the Commissioner of Health; the Commissioner of Housing and Community Renewal; the Commissioner of Labor; the Director of the Lottery; the Commissioner of Motor Vehicles; the Commissioner of Temporary and Disability Assistance; the Commissioner of Transportation; and the Chancellor of the State University of New York.
For more information on the New York 2010 Census Complete Count Committee, please visit