Gov. George Pataki gave his 2006 Budget Address today and provided more positive news for State Police members. As previously mentioned, the Governor has created a task force aimed at reducing gun trafficking, which will dedicate 100 more Investigators to help keep illegal guns off the streets. The Governor is continuing his support for the State Police by making it one of the few state agencies to gain employees in this budget proposal.
On a related note, PBA members should understand that the proposed targeted retirement incentive mentioned in the Governor’s budget address will not include sworn members of the State Police.
The PBA thanks the Governor for his continued support over the years, and we look forward to working with him through the rest of his term of office. Below are excerpts from the Governor’s Budget Address regarding criminal justice; at the end of the excerpts is a link to the New York State web site and the Governor’s full Budget Address.
Excerpts from the Governor’s Remarks on January 17, 2006:
Since 1995, together we have taken dramatic steps to help make New York the safest large state in America.
And we are still building on this record of success.
Just over a month ago, we enacted two new laws to remove illegal gun traffickers from our streets and provide better protection to our brave men and women of law enforcement.
And because we had dramatically increased our Trooper strength over the years, I was able to announce the very next day the deployment of 100 new State police investigators to pursue and apprehend gun traffickers.
This year’s budget provides $22 million to support this vital initiative, and will also include funding to make our State Police force stronger than ever by adding 100 new Troopers to the best State police force in the nation.
Our budget also provides increased funding to expand Operation IMPACT beyond the 17 counties it now targets, allowing us to continue to take the fight against crime directly to the criminals who are responsible for it.
It allocates millions more for enhanced DNA crime-fighting technology, allowing us to quickly match DNA samples from crime scenes to any convicted criminal in New York State.
It adds funding for an expanded cyber crimes unit, equipping our State to respond better to cyber attacks and computer-related crimes.
And finally, our budget will provide the funds that will keep the most dangerous sexually violent predators away from society, away from our neighborhoods, and away from our children.
As part of this initiative, I am proposing funding to convert the Camp Pharsalia correctional facility into the most secure facility specifically designed to civilly confine sexual predators in America.
This proposed budget will ensure that our law enforcement officials have the resources they need to fight crime.
But resources alone are not enough.
Along with our budget, you have critically important criminal justice legislation to consider.
Legislation that strengthens Megan’s Law, abolishes the statute of limitations for rape and other sexual assaults, requires all convicted criminals to submit DNA samples, lengthens sentences for convicted sexually violent predators, and yes, keeps the most dangerous of those predators off our streets and away from our children.
Let’s get these bills enacted so we can save more lives and protect more New Yorkers.