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Movement on casinos, women’s equality; opposition to tax-free SUNY plan

Late Tuesday, the Governor’s office and groups advocating for a women’s equality agenda said that a package of ten bills will be split up into individual measures.

Lawmakers on both sides of the political aisle have backed much of the agenda, but Republicans in the State Senate have said they wouldn’t bring the bills to the table if they included a proposal to change the state’s abortion laws.

Also on Tuesday, lawmakers reached an agreement to bring four, Las Vegas-style casinos to upstate New York. It’s the first step in a long process, as the measure would have to be approved again in the next legislative session, and then the idea would go to the public for a vote.

Local Assemblywoman Barbara Lifton is expressing frustration with the  grumblings this week at the State Capitol, especially since Democrats hold a majority in both houses of the legislature. That majority in the Senate includes a Senate Independent Conference made up of four lawmakers, who share power with Republicans in the chamber.

One issue Lifton does stand against is Governor Cuomo’s Tax Free New York Initiative which gives new businesses tax exempt status for coming to SUNY or CUNY school communities.

She says its unfair to give one group tax exempt status when everyone should be paying into the system.

The current legislative session is set to end this Friday, June 21st.

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