January 27, 2015

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Assemblyman Kearns opens new offices

BY: Community Papers of WNY Staff | December 27, 2012

SOUTH BUFFALO - As Western New York rolls into 2013 Assemblymember Michael “Mickey” Kearns has many things he is looking forward to in the upcoming year: new office space, the passing of legislation sponsored and supported by him, and physical improvements to the Buffalo and Western New York area.

Previously having had a South Buffalo constituency base as a Buffalo Councilmember, Assemblyman Kearns now represents residents of areas in Buffalo and Lackawanna as well as Orchard Park and West Seneca, and finds it important to be accessible to the people of those areas. As such the assemblyman is moving his office from the Seneca Street, South Buffalo space to a Southgate Plaza office located at 950 Union Road in West Seneca to allow for a more central location. He will maintain a satellite office in Buffalo at the Cazenovia Resource Center and Library located at 155 Cazenovia Street for easy accessibility to the residents of Buffalo.

Acknowledging that having been elected in this past spring’s special election has aided him in already having many legislative efforts underway, Assemblyman Kearns is working towards several efforts to improve the quality of life in our area and maintaining a solid tax base.

Assemblyman Kearns has filed real property related legislation aimed at minimizing the negative impact of the economy’s foreclosure market. One bill will require banks to act in “good faith”, making it illegal for lenders to indefinably delay obtaining a foreclosure, thereby requiring them to take responsibility for the foreclosed properties earlier. Another real property related effort will require lenders to have a contact organization readily available to maintain abandoned or vacant properties that were the subject or foreclosure, to allow for upkeep of the properties during time of transition.

Kearns is seeking support for his “Secret Settlement Prohibition” efforts that will forbid court approved secret settlement agreements on matters that involve public agencies, public bodies and public organizations in certain litigation matters of wide spread interest. Prior secrecy agreements that involved substantial public harm included clergy sex abuse claims, dangerous prescription drug litigation matters, and Boy Scout of America abuse matters. Kearns’ proposed legislation would address and prohibit closet settlements of such matters.

Other important legislation presently pending in Albany is the anti cyber-bullying legislation that will ensure that New York State public schools are safe and free from cyber-bullying. This legislative effort was initiated by the receipt of a letter written by West Seneca youth, Christopher LaRussa, who had been the target of bullying. Assemblyman Kearns and others took action on the letter, and are now seeking “swift passage” of cyber-bullying legislation to make our schools a safer place for our children.

With a Buffalo firefighter for a father, serving the public seems to be in Kearns’ blood. Working prior to his public service in a law office and for a private fundraising company, the Assemblyman’s past experiences seems to have culminated into a unique skill set that enables him to easily envision a project and take the proper avenue of steps to put the project into play. Kearns talks about his vision for the New Year with spirit and passion.

“The wonderful part about my job” the Assemblyman reveals, “is that I am able to see the work that I do come to life. I live and work here and I have the opportunity to observe what I envision become a reality.”

Assemblyman Kearns talks excitedly about the Mulroy Park and Pierce Field project, which has broken ground and is scheduled to for completion as early as 2014. This multi-purpose synthetic turf field and recreational facility, which will be located in the Tift Street/South Park Ave area, is an admittedly collaborative effort of many with private and public funding coming from various sources. Mayor Byron Brown and the City of Buffalo are joining the Buffalo Bills, the Buffalo Legacy Project and others in financially supporting this $2.5 million plan that will bring a much needed community based multipurpose recreational facility to the area. Kearns describes the future park as the “jewel of South Buffalo”. The state-of-the-art facility will feature health and wellness educational programs as well as a multi-use sports field and off street parking.

This Assemblyman for the 145th District of New York has continued his efforts on the waterfront development projects, his small business efforts to aide in local job creation, and his plans for the Cazenovia Resource Center and Library as well as the 49 Buffum Street project in South Buffalo. In Lackawanna, Kearns is taking efforts to prohibit the federal mandate of flood insurance of certain Lackawanna residents where it is believed that the flood insurance is unnecessary.

“This is a fleecing of the tax payers,” Kearns explains, ““It’s unconscionable that the federal government is burdening residents with payment of unnecessary insurances”.

The Assemblyman was successful in winning a similar battle in South Buffalo a number of years ago, and will use his past knowledge and experience in the hopes of a similar positive outcome in Lackawanna. Kearns is encouraging all impacted Lackawanna Residents to participate in his Flood-Plain Insurance Survey. You can find his Lackawanna Flood-Plain Insurance Survey online or contact Lackawanna City Hall for more information.

So, with everything going on in his district and in Albany, what is it that Assemblyman Mickey Kearns wants the people of Western New York to know at this time?

“I want to truly thank them,” Assemblyman Kearns states, “I want to thank the voters for putting their faith in me and giving me the opportunity to serve them. That means so much to me. It is the trust and confidence that the voters have in me that make it possible for me to do the job that I am doing. I look forward to making this region an even better area to work and live in”

Well, he’s certainly well under way to improving the quality of life in our neighborhoods. For further information on Assemblyman Kearns’ efforts you can contact him at kearnsm@assembly.state.ny.us, or by calling 826-0152.

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