John DeFrancisco

No state spends more on Medicaid than New York, earning it the nickname of the Cadillac of Medicaid programs. But that may soon end. One of the reasons the state spends $54 billion a years on the federal health care program for the poor, are 31 optional services that the state can sign on for -- ranging from transportation, to prescription drugs, to private nurses.

The hearings are over; the New York State Assembly and Senate have put together their respective spending plans. Now this week, lawmakers in Albany get down to the details of hammering out a state budget that both chambers can agree on. Senate Finance Committee Chairman John DeFrancisco of Syracuse believes it can be done before the April 1 deadline.

Mayor Stephanie Miner poked some fun at her fellow central New York politicians in a video played before Thursday night's State of the City address. Check out the cameos by Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY), state Sen. John DeFrancisco (R-Syracuse) and Onondaga County Executive Joanie Mahoney (R).

Proposed state legislation would allow social services officials to withhold rent payments for low-income housing when the landlords haven’t paid their taxes.

If you have an old cell phone stashed in a drawer that you don't use any more, you can help a soldier overseas keep in touch with home.  Central New York's "Cell Phones for Soldiers" annual collection drive continues, as does the need.

The new iteration of the New York state Senate will look different in 2013 with the new power sharing agreement in place between Republicans and breakaway Democrats, and two central New York lawmakers will be in the thick of it.

Some supporters of the new state Senate coalition between Republicans and the Independent Democrat Caucus say it will keep upstate New York concerns on the table. Some area politicians believe that wasn't the case when Democrats had control of the New York state Senate in 2009 and 2010.

Durrie Lawrence / WRVO

With two Republican state senators retiring, the GOP could lose their slim majority in the New York State Senate on Tuesday. Senator John DeFrancisco (R-Syracuse) said he doesn’t want Democrats to lead the state Senate, as they did briefly in 2009 and 2010. 

Republicans in the state Senate Tuesday night brought up a bill that would give $10 million in extra aid to schools. 

Grant Reeher at the Campbell Debate
Post Standard

State lawmakers have passed their second straight on time budget. Speaking with Grant Reeher just before the budget passed, Syracuse area State Senator John DeFrancisco describes the budget process and discusses whether or not it has improved in recent years.

Eileen Krupka's father has suffered from Alzheimer's Disease for the last six years.  He's like many other's with the progressive neurological disease of the brain he wanders, in fact 60-percent of Alzheimers or dementia patients wander and its a worry for the Krupka family, who live in Baldwinsville.

We have a lot of water around us. and he seems to be fascinated by the water and that's a huge concern

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