OLEAN - Assemblyman Joe Giglio (R,I,C-Gowanda) has announced he is running for re-election in the 149th Assembly District, which encompasses all of Cattaraugus County, 13 towns in Allegany County and seven towns in Chautauqua County.
"The Southern Tier and Western New York need a strong advocate in the State Assembly, and I plan to continue my work on behalf of the residents of the 149th District. Whether it be standing up for our small businesses, our farms and agriculture operations, supporting sportsmen or helping families looking to make ends meet in the face of rising taxes and fees, I pledge to be on the front lines in this constant struggle to bring the Southern Tier the resources we need to prosper in these difficult economic times," Giglio said.
"I'm eternally thankful to the voters that have trusted me to represent them in the past three elections," Giglio said. "I want the voters to know that I work every day to bring an individual, independent approach to the State Assembly, and I have always represented the diverse views of the residents."
First elected in a 2005 special election, he was re-elected in 2006 and 2008 with over 60 percent of the vote. Prior to serving in the Assembly, Giglio had served as Director of Operations with the Cattaraugus County Sheriff's Department and as the New York State Deputy Inspector General in charge of the WNY Office. Giglio's expertise in law enforcement has earned him a lead role on the Assembly Corrections Committee. He also serves on the Aging, Racing & Wagering, and Children & Families Committees.
One of Giglio's top priorities is working with his colleagues to secure Assembly Rules reform. "The current system is entirely leadership drivenThe Assembly Speaker and his lieutenants write the rules to preclude any input from the rank-and-file membership," Giglio said. "We need immediate rules reform in order to return transparency, open dialogue and good government practices to the Assembly. Only then can we begin to restore the public's trust in government." Several of his Rules Reform proposals are outlined below:
Install a process to allow every member to have legislation considered by the full Assembly on the floor;
Mandate fiscal notes so members fully understand the cost of each measure, and who will be paying for it;
Allow open sponsorship of all legislation;
Allow individual sponsors of legislation to commence the conference committee process.
After devastating floods in the Gowanda/Silver Creek area in August 2009, Assemblyman Giglio went to work on behalf of his community. At his request, the State Insurance Department immediately dispatched its mobile response unit to the area to assist homeowners and businesses. After months of letters, phone calls and advocacy, Giglio was proud to announce that the Federal Emergency Manage-ment Agency would provide full funding to Tri-County Hospital, so that it could re-open in a safer location for the Gowanda community and surrounding area.
Giglio points to the establishment of the Child Advocacy Center and the Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner program, as accomplishments. "I commend the Southern Tier Health Care System for their diligent work in establishing these critical programs, and I'm proud to have offered assistance to get them off the ground," Giglio said.
Giglio was also involved in the establishment of the Office of the Medicaid Inspector General. Using his expertise gained during his law enforcement career, Giglio suggested several changes to strengthen the office to fight waste, fraud and abuse. In addition to other concerns, Giglio points out the need to perform a thorough review of the Medicaid program, and the State's decision to continually pass along administrative costs to local government property taxpayers. Joe stated, "Currently, one in five New Yorkers depends on Medicaid services. We must re-establish asset and resource tests, face-to-face interviews and fingerprint checks to qualify for Medicaid services. Many suggestions on how to control the costs of New York's most expensive program have fallen on deaf ears for far too long."
He also fought to keep open the Great Valley and Limestone Residential Youth Facilities. "I believe that keeping the facilities open could be a cost savings to the State. New York state spends more than $200 million annually to house special needs youth out-of-state," said Giglio. "It has been reported that many youth were housed in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, hundreds of miles from their homes. If the State is spending hundreds of millions on these efforts, we should focus on spending it in our own State, helping our residents, and protecting vital jobs in the Southern Tier."
Since his election to the State Assembly, Giglio has fought for policies that encourage and promote private sector job growth, which in turn would grow the New York State economy. Giglio stated, "New Yorkers are over-taxed, and State spending is out of control. I will not support new taxes, fees and burdensome regulations. The policies of the downstate majorities are not working and must change."
"Albany continues to be dominated by three men in a room, who continue to put New York City first. I will fight for tax relief for families and small business owners, to keep our parks open and maintained, and I will support family farms and agriculture, and our outdoor sporting traditions. I am excited to continue my partnership with Senator Catharine Young, and I look forward to working with a new Governor to make Upstate New York and the Southern Tier a welcoming location for business and families," Giglio said.