Kirsten Gillibrand

Ellen Abbott / WRVO News

As manufacturers across central New York and the entire state have trouble finding qualified workers, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) hopes a bill she supports in Congress can make a difference.  

Recent statistics show that almost a third of New York manufacturers have trouble keeping skilled workers. One of them is SBB, a DeWitt company that specializes in clean room technologies. General manager Brandon Bogart says they have openings for engineers right now that are going unfilled. And that's crimping the company’s future.

Senate Democrats / Flickr

Asthma rates are on the rise across New York, especially in children.

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) has proposed the School Asthma Management Plan Act to ensure schools are equipped to respond to asthma attacks and to help prevent them from happening.

"This bill would ensure that schools have a coordinated response to asthma related medical emergencies, better communication with citizens and access to life saving medication," Gillibrand told reporters.

Courtesy Andy Daddio / Colgate University

Hours after Hillary Clinton formally announced her campaign for president Sunday, several New York officials and fellow Democrats quickly threw their support behind the former Secretary of State, who also served as U.S. senator from New York from 2001-2009. 

Ryan Delaney / WRVO

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand faces an uphill battle in getting paid family leave for workers into law.

Gillibrand, a Democrat, wants to make federal law the ability for workers to take extended time off for childbirth or to care for a sick family member. Employees would receive two-thirds pay while they’re away from work, paid for by a small tax to employers and employees, similar to social security reductions on a paycheck.

Credit njxw / Flickr

 

Many working parents may find it hard to imagine a daycare center right in the same building as their job. But Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) wants to change that. She has introduced a bill to increase tax breaks for businesses that build onsite child care.

Having child care at work could make a big difference for parents like Stephanie Walsh. Walsh says sometimes she barely leaves the house in over a week. She used to go to work every morning, as an accountant at a Southern Tier construction company. But then she had her son Jacob.

Senate Democrats / Flickr

New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand is teaming up with an unlikely group of colleagues to push for more federal support of medical marijuana.

Gillibrand is one of three senators introducing a bill that would scale back federal enforcement of marijuana laws in states that have legalized medicinal or recreational pot.

She is co-sponsoring the bill with a fellow Democrat from New Jersey, Sen. Corey Booker, and Kentucky Republican Sen. Rand Paul. They introduced the legislation Tuesday at a press conference in Washington.

Ellen Abbott / WRVO

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) stopped at college campuses across upstate New York Monday, continuing her push to get support for a bill that would combat sexual violence on college campuses. Her last stop was at Syracuse University’s Maxwell School.

When Meaghan Greeley was sexually assaulted on a college campus six years ago, there wasn’t much help for her.

"There were no confidential advocates to turn to for support. The administrators or staff members I sought guidance from had never received any training in how to advise me or support me,” said Greeley.

Gillibrand targets college sexual assault

Feb 27, 2015
Credit Andrew Dallos / via Flickr

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand announced a bipartisan bill on Thursday that would hold colleges accountable for sexual assaults.

She says that under the current system, colleges have incentives to hush up assaults. They’re bad publicity and scare away prospective students. Her bill aims to change that. It creates a national anonymous survey for students to report sexual assaults. Results for each college would be public online.

Gillibrand advocates for more comprehensive food programs

Feb 24, 2015
bookgrl / Flickr

It may be the dead of winter, but Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) is thinking about summer. At Binghamton High School Monday, Gillibrand touted her new bill that would expand access to meal programs for students during summer vacation.

The move comes ahead of congressional debate on nutrition standards at schools and would ensure needy students three meals a day during the summer.

Ryan Delaney / WRVO

A federal judge this week blocked two executive actions by President Obama, that would have protected as many as 4 million immigrants in the country illegally from deportation. U.S. District Court Judge Andrew Hanen said the president overstepped his authority. 

Central New York Congressman John Katko agrees with the judge's ruling. 

Obama's State of the Union: New York politicians share their thoughts

Jan 21, 2015
Office of Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand

Many upstate New York representatives shared their thoughts after President Barack Obama's State of the Union speech Tuesday night.

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) applauded Obama for focusing on the middle class and economic opportunity in a statement.

Ellen Abbott/WRVO

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) continues to make her case for legislation that would help ease the burden of child care costs, which the senator says add up to $10,000 a year per child for the average central New York family.  

At a day care center in East Syracuse Friday, the Democrat calmed an infant before explaining her proposal to use tax breaks to make child care more affordable. The three-pronged plan takes into account different income levels. 

Ryan Delaney / WRVO

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand’s proposal to change the way the military deals with sexual assault cases could come up for another vote in this month’s lame duck congressional session.

Gillibrand (D-NY) fell five votes short last spring of getting a bill passed that would overhaul military sexual-assault policies. But she says she wants to bring it up again, attaching it to a military authorization bill that has to be approved by the end of the year.  

governorandrewcuomo / Flickr

Evacuation plans are being prepared and the Red Cross is setting up shelters as rising temperatures begin to melt seven feet of snow that piled up in some parts of the Buffalo area, causing a risk of flooding.

Temperatures approached 50 degrees in Buffalo on Sunday and are expected to be near 60 today. The National Weather Service said street flooding should be expected in urban areas where storm drains are blocked by the heavy snow.

Senate Democrats / Flickr

Before returning  to Washington for the next session of Congress, Sen. Kirsten Gllibrand (D-NY) made a stop yesterday in Utica to talk about cybersecurity.

Gillibrand came to Utica College to tour the Northeast Cyber Forensic Center. She said the region has long been fundamental to the nation’s national security.

"Utica and Rome nearby have been at the heart of our national defense, particularly in areas concerning cyber," Gillibrand explained. "So we almost have a corridor of expertise in this region which is very powerful."

Gino Geruntino / WRVO

They are in products people use every day to help get grime off their hands, keep their faces acne free and even make their teeth pearly white. But environmentalists and New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) say plastic microbeads are polluting the country's lakes and streams.

While standing in front of Lake Ontario, Gillibrand announced her push to get companies to remove microbeads from personal care products like hand soap, facial scrubs and toothpaste, citing the harmful effects they have on the environment.

NIAID / Flickr

Federal lawmakers from New York are somewhat split on how to handle people traveling to the state from Ebola-stricken West African nations.

Senate Democrats / Flickr

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) says she supports President Barack Obama's call for airstrikes in Syria. During a weekend appearance on CBS "Face the Nation," Gillibrand said the United States needs to take action against the militant group known as ISIS in Syria, but the U.S. needs to make intelligent decisions about how to do that.

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The State University of New York system is the first to support a proposed bill that would strengthen rules to protect students from sexual assault.

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand was in Manhattan Wednesday to announce SUNY's support for the Campus Accountability and Safety Act. Gillibrand has been a lead backer of the bill, which would ensure minimum training standards for campus employees and would require colleges and universities to perform annual surveys to keep records of sexual assault cases.

Ryan Delaney / WRVO

New York Democratic Senator Kirsten Gillibrand helped introduce a bill Wednesday to combat the high rates of sexual assaults on college campuses.

Current statistics show nearly twenty percent of females who attend college are sexually assaulted. But critics say universities and colleges often provide either incomplete or false data. 

The new legislation would punish schools for falsifying that data while also requiring every school to release results of an anonymous student survey about assaults. 

Senator Gillibrand says these steps are vital.

Tom Magnarelli/WRVO (file photo)

Sen. Charles Schumer and Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand are welcoming the announcement today by the federal Department of Transportation for increased safety measures for rail cars that carry crude oil.

With more oil being shipped via train from the Bakken region in North Dakota and adjacent Canada to the East Coast, and more accidents involving those tanker cars, safety concerns have been growing.

Schumer told reporters today that he hopes the rules will be implemented as soon as possible.

Gillibrand pushing for more STEM opportunities

Jun 16, 2014
WXXI News

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) has recently been touring New York state, outlining her education plan to provide more opportunities to students across the region in the science, technology, engineering and math or STEM fields.

"The bill will help create grant programs for elementary, middle and high schools," said Gillibrand. "Schools are encouraged to partner with their local colleges and non-for-profit businesses to bolster innovated STEM related curriculum and mentorship programs designed to develop the stills that folks need."

DVIDSHUB / Flickr

A new White House climate report paints a dire picture for New York if something drastic isn't done to address climate change, and the Obama administration is preparing to act without Congress.

The Third National Climate Assessment predicts dramatic changes in coastal states like New York. But the state’s junior Democratic senator, Kirsten Gillibrand, says upstate residents and businesses are at risk too.

Gillibrand pushes for bill to cut student loan rates

May 14, 2014
Ryan Delaney / WRVO

As the debt load of recent college graduates continues to rise, New York's junior senator is stumping for a new bill that will cut the interest rate on federal student loans by nearly half.

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) is one of about two dozen Democrats backing a bill that will reduce the loan rate on undergraduate loans to about 3.8 percent, from the nearly seven percent they sit at now. The bill would also bring down the interest rates for graduate school loans.

Joanna Richards / WRVO

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) says in the next few months she is going to revive her military sexual assault bill, which changes how those types of crimes are prosecuted by the military. The legislation failed last month following a filibuster.

Gillibrand says her bill, which would allow military prosecutors to handle sexual assault cases instead of officers in the regular chain of command, still has the support of 55 senators, including Republicans.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO

New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand was the first member of Congress to offer the U.S. Export-Import Bank the opportunity to visit small businesses in her state. The result was a meeting last week at Filtertech in Manlius with the bank's president.

Filtertech designs and manufactures industrial size liquid filtration systems.  

In 2008, the U.S. Export-Import Bank financed the manufacturing of a project Filtertech produced with a company in Italy; a project that helped keep them in business at the time.

Ryan Delaney / WRVO

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand wants to double the tax write-off for child care expenses, saying it will benefit working mothers and families.

Right now 35 percent of a child’s daycare – or up to about $1,000 – can be written off on annual tax filings. Gillibrand’s bill would raise that to half of the expenses, or $3,000. She says making child care more affordable will allow more parents to work full time and bring home more money.

Joanna Richards / WRVO

After a year of lobbying her colleagues, New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand's bill to change how the Pentagon handles sexual assault cases was rejected by the Senate.

Gillibrand isn't looking at her legislation's defeat as a failure, just a temporary setback in her effort to remove sexual assault cases from the military chain of command. Although 55 senators supported it, that wasn't enough to overcome a bipartisan filibuster.

Gillibrand says her work isn’t over.

Ryan Delaney / WRVO

New York Democratic Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand is on a personal crusade to change the military culture that’s allowed sexual assaults to go unpunished, and is attempting to push a bill through the Senate.

Gillibrand remembers when the issue of sexual assaults in the military really got on her radar. It was while watching a 2012 documentary called The Invisible War.

Gillibrand, Hanna push for universal pre-K together

Feb 3, 2014
Ryan Delaney / WRVO

Rep. Richard Hanna and Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand played with blocks and Elmer’s glue at a pre-kindergarten classroom in Herkimer Monday before introducing a proposal to fund universal early education on a federal level.

The argument Gillibrand, a Democrat, and Hanna, a Republican, are making is that funding universal pre-kindergarten is an investment, not an expense.

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