Sen. Borrello a co-sponsor of Divide NY Plan
State Sen. George Borrello, R-Sunset Bay, has signed on as a co-sponsor of legislation to amend the state constitution and split New York state into three zones.
S. 5416 is sponsored in the state Senate by Sen. Robert Ortt, R-Lockport. In addition to Borrello, the legislation is now co-sponsored by Republican Senators Pamela Helming, Daphne Jordan, Thomas O’Mara, Michael Ranzenhofer, Patty Ritchie and James Seward. Ortt’s legislation was originally introduced in April 2019 and again in January and has twice been referred to the state Attorney General’s office before being returned to the Senate’s Judiciary Committee, where it has languished.
Companion legislation (A.5498) has been introduced in the state Assembly sponsored by Assemblyman David DiPietro, R-East Aurora, and co-sponsored by fellow Republicans John Salka, Peter Lawrence, Philip Palmesano, Christopher Tague, Michael Norris, Brian Manktelow, Christopher Friend, Marjorie Byrnes, Stephen Hawley and Brian Kolb.
The Republicans propose to amend the state Constitution, which would require a public referendum, to divide the state into the New Amsterdam, New York and Montauk regions. The New York region would include the New York City area of Bronx, Kings, New York, Queens and Richmond counties while the Montauk region would include Nassau, Suffolk, Rockland and Westchester counties.
New Amsterdam would include Albany, Allegany, Broome, Cattaraugus, Cayuga, Chautauqua, Chemung, Chenango, Clinton, Columbia, Cortland, Delaware, Dutchess, Erie, Essex, Franklin, Fulton, Genesee, Greene, Hamilton, Herkimer, Jefferson, Lewis, Livingston, Madison, Monroe, Montgomery, Niagara, Oneida, Onandaga, Ontario, Orange, Orleans, Oswego, Otsego, Putnam, Rensselaer, Saratoga, Schenectady, Schoharie, Schuyler, Seneca, St. Lawrence, Steuben, Sullivan, Tioga, Tompkins, Ulster, Warren, Washington, Wayne, Wyoming and Yates counties.
Legislative power in each region would be given to a regional Senate and a regional Assembly. Those regional legislators would also serve in the New York state Senate and Assembly. Each regional legislature would meet in January, February and March of each year followed by two months of state Legislature meetings. Executive power would be held by a regional governor serving a four-year term with a regional lieutenant governor serving beneath the regional governor.
A token state government would still exist with a governor, lieutenant governor and comptroller, with the smaller state government able to make laws related to the executive, legislative, civil service, Court of Appeals, state Court of Claims and state Judicial Conduct.
Each of the three regions would have the ability to levy taxes for programs.