Galef Releases Results of Constituent Survey-Results Mixed

For Immediate Release                                                                                       Contact:  Sandy Galef

**See Attached Table**                                                                               (518) 455-5348

Assemblywoman Sandy Galef Releases Results of January 2013 Constituent Survey

Constituents Agree on Many Issues, Are Divided on Others

(April 29, 2013) Assemblywoman Sandy Galef (95th AD) has released the results of her most recent constituent survey, citing that 695 constituents responded to various questions regarding early voting, plastic bag taxes, gun safety, and medical personnel apologies, among other issues.


“I rely on these surveys to get a better understanding of the issues that are important to my constituents,” Galef said. “I found it intriguing that respondents were very split on some of the issues, while on others almost everyone seemed to agree upon a particular path to take. Discussions about how to move forward with these topics will be continuing in the legislature, so it is very useful to have received this input from those who live in my assembly district.”


Some of the questions showed a general consensus among the respondents. Even though the survey came out around the same time as the legislation in regard to gun control was passing the Assembly, 69% of constituents responded that they support the placement of additional measures regulating both guns and ammunition. On January 15th Governor Cuomo signed into law the New York Secure Ammunition and Firearms Enforcement Act, or SAFE Act, the most comprehensive gun safety law in the United States.


With regard to medical personnel apologizing for errors without the apology being considered an admission of guilt, 65% of constituents agreed such apologies should be excluded in medical malpractice lawsuits and Assemblywoman Galef has introduced Assembly bill A4071 to do so.


The results show that 64% of the constituents would support allowing voters in New York State to cast ballots up to a week or two before Election Day. Many respondents commented on this issue, supporting the increased accessibility to voting that this proposal would offer.


Two questions on the survey received an overwhelming amount of favorable support. 88% of constituents agree with Galef that the statute of limitations for victims of child sexual abuse should be extended from 5 years to 10 years. 89% of those that responded are in favor of the creation and maintenance of an automobile driver next-of-kin registry. This would allow those who obtain driver’s licenses to provide the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles with emergency contact information that can then be used to contact next-of-kin in the event of an automobile accident that either kills or injures the driver. In order to direct the Commissioner of the DMV to establish such a registry, Assemblywoman Galef has introduced Assembly Bill A6694.


Most of the questions yielded results that showed a clear majority opinion of the respondents. This was not the case for the issue of allowing voters that are not registered with a specific party to participate in primary elections. According to the results, only 49% are in favor of New York allowing this. Another topic on which respondents are much divided is that of adopting a program to impose a 5 cent fee for single use carry out bags at stores and supermarkets, with the revenue then going towards state parks and historic sites. A majority of 58% are opposed to such a program being implemented.


**For the complete results of the survey see the attached table.


“I have distributed the full results of my survey to my Assembly and Senate colleagues and will continue working with them to pass legislation that will benefit both the communities within my Assembly District and the entire state. I appreciate all of the responses that I received. It is essential to receive such feedback from my constituents so I am aware of the issues that are important to them and can represent them well in Albany,” Galef concluded.


New York State Assemblywoman Sandy Galef-April 2013


I received 695 responses to the Constituent Questionnaire on the back of my January Newsletter and I thank those of you who submitted these responses. I value your input, as it allows me to better address the pressing issues of today during the legislative process. Here are the percentage results for both yes and no responses:


Question In Favor


1. Many states in the U.S. have early  voting opportunities to encourage greater voter participation. How would you  feel about New York State allowing voters to cast a ballot up to a week or  two before election day, which would include a Saturday and a Sunday?






2. Other states allow voters not registered with  specific parties to participate in primary elections. Do you think New York  should allow this?






3. Should we adopt a program which would impose a 5  cent fee for single use carry out bags at supermarkets and stores, revenue  from which we would use to fund state parks and historic sites?






4. Many medical personnel, such as doctors and  nurses, are afraid to apologize for an error or bad outcome regarding a  patient because it can be used in lawsuits as an admission of guilt. Would  you support a law that excludes such apologies as admissions of liability in  medical malpractice lawsuits?








5. Should we extend the statute of limitations from  five to ten years for victims of child sexual abuse to file claims against  their abusers?








6. Some states maintain an automobile driver  next-of-kin registry so that the next of kin are contacted if the driver is  injured or killed in an automobile accident. Would you support legislation  that would allow those obtaining a driver’s license to provide the New  York State Department of Motor Vehicles with emergency contact information in  case he or she is injured in an automobile accident?







7. In light of the tragedy of Newtown, CT, do you  believe the state needs to put in place additional measures regulating guns  and ammunition?






The following are some of the comments on my survey that I received from constituents in relation to various issues:


Gun Control Comments

  • Ban private ownership of     assault weapons
  • Ban large magazines/limit     number of rounds
  • Enforce current laws
  • Go after criminals, not     law abiding citizens
  • Tougher restrictions     should be applied to hand guns
  • More extensive background     checks
  • Ban or Tax assault weapons
  • Ban pistols
  • Ban ammunition for banned     weapons
  • Longer wait periods for     purchasing firearms
  • Strengthen registration     procedures
  • All weapons must be kept     in vault
  • Tougher sentences for gun     related crimes
  • Station employee at school     entrance, possibly with use of a buzzer system
  • Hunt down unregistered gun     owners
  • Enforce     registration/background checks at gun shows
  • No sales at gun shows
  • Strict licensing
  • Re-registration every year/periodically
  • Make purchase of guns     public knowledge
  • Hunters cannot own more     than 3 rifles or shotguns
  • Ban handguns
  • No more than 1 box of     bullets per month per costumer
  • Ammunition should be     registered when bought
  • Ammunition should be     limited, and taxed
  • Register all firearms
  • Don’t need more laws
  • New tax on buying guns
  • Alert police if gun owner     has more than 1 gun
  • Restrict concealed weapons
  • More money and effort into     mental health issues
  • Close gun show and private     sale loopholes
  • Require higher level     license for assault weapons and high-capacity magazines
  • Ban gun ownership for     people with mental health issues
  • Institute background     checks for purchases of ammunition
  • Ban individuals under 19     from purchasing guns
  • Limit number of guns     private households can own
  • Improve databases of     guns/gun owners across state agencies
  • Require fingerprinting of     all gun buyers
  • Limit gun and ammunition     purchases as much as possible
  • Restrict sale of     ammunition to specifically licensed entities (NOT sporting goods stores)
  • Limit gun purchases to 1     per year
  • Stricter punishment for     gun trafficking
  • Restrict hunting within     one mile of public space, including in the Adirondacks


Early Voting Constituent Comments

  • Only when necessary to     alleviate long lines
  • Could possibly offer more     flexibility
  • Easier process encourages     more participation
  • Must push online voting
  • Mail-Use the L.A. Model
  • Voting opportunities     should be made possible to the aged and home-bound
  • Crucial in obtaining votes     from isolated groups
  • Could create more voter     fraud
  • Don’t trust ability     to “warehouse” ballot
  • It’s the     voter’s obligation to make the effort on Election Day
  • Voters should vote on only     Election Day
  • If people want to vote     they find the time
  • It is hard enough now to     keep track of who has already voted
  • More room for voter fraud
  • Increases cost for poll     workers
  • Might need significant     clerical oversight to control


 Plastic Bag Tax Constituent Comments

  • No plastic bags at all
  • Use paper bags for packing
  • Should be $0.25
  • If the money actually went     where it should go
  • Food expenses are already     enough


Statute of Limitations for Victims of Child Sexual Abuse Constituent Comments

  • 20 years would be better

Bazzo 04/30/13

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