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Reporter’s Notebook: Congress on the Hudson

Gillibrand, Lowey Join Local Politicians At Nyack Women’s Boutique

by Dave Zornow

Nyack, Sept 3 ‘€“ On the last day of the Republican convention, there was an unheralded speech about jobs, small business and working across the aisle. Unlike many of the pro-business spiels during the convention week, there was no Democratic rebuttal. Which is probably because the message wasn’t delivered in Tampa by Republicans, but by a Democratic US Senator and Congressswoman in Nyack.

Weird, huh?

‘€œWhen we provide the tools that small business leaders need, we can help this economic engine take off,’€ said US Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-New York) to an audience of about 75 business owners, press and local politicians at the Maria Luisa Boutique in Nyack last Thursday.

Gillbrand was joined by Congresswoman Nita Lowey (D-Westchester/Rockland) to promote the Success Act, legislation that would encourage investments in small business stock, double the deduction for start-up expenses and continue tax breaks for spending on new equipment. ‘€œIt’s not a Republican idea. It’s not a Democratic idea. It’s just a good idea,’€ said Gillibrand. New York’s junior senator has been working with a bipartisan group of women senators to extend targeted small business tax benefits, which expired at the start of 2012, through at least 2013.

For the sake of our economy, we must put politics aside and pass the Success Act, so we can help grow our small businesses and create jobs today,” said Lowey. Accord to Gillibrand, the Success Act has bipartisan support, led by Senators Mary Landrieu (D-Louisiana) and Olympia Snowe (R-Maine).

The female DC representatives were joined by local elected leaders, almost all of which were women, including NYS Assemblywoman Ellen Jaffee, Rockland County Legislature Chairwoman Harriett Cornell, Nyack Mayor Jen White, South Nyack Mayor Tish Dubow and Clarkstown Councilwoman Stephanie Hausner. White said that there are at least three woman-owned businesses on each block of Nyack’s downtown.

Although the press conference received coverage in Cablevison’s Newsday, Gannett’s Journal NewsAOL’s The and, here are a few bullet points that didn’t make the Friday news.

  • The “success” in the SUCCESS Act is an acronym — which even Gillibrand had to describe as a mouthful. “SUCCESS stands for Success Ultimately comes from Capital, Contracting, Education, Strategic partnerships and Smart regulation.” After Gillibrand breezed through this tongue twister, she received a small round of applause.
  • Lowey, who is running for re-election in a newly formed district that now includes Nyack, said she had never been to the Maria Luisa Boutique but looked forward to returning and shopping there with her grandchildren.
  • It wasn’t all about small business, as the Tappan Zee Bridge project made two cameo appearances at the media event.
    • Tish Dubow from South Nyack kicked off the Q&A saying that she was bringing a question from Brian Conybeare about restoring / rehabilitating NYS Thruway Exit 10, which at one time was downtown South Nyack. In an earlier version of the Tappan Zee Bridge project, state planners had recommended reworking the 360 degree exit ramp into two small roundabout. South Nyack had also requested that the state consider building a “lid park” over the Thruway where it passes through South Nyack. Her point was raised and the conversation veered back to the Success Act.
    • In response to a question about Washington financial support for a new Tappan Zee Bridge, Gillibrand said that part of the  $105 billion Transportation Bill just passed by Congress is dedicated to the TZB. Although this doesn’t provide direct funding to help pay for a new bridge, the two year extension to the Transportation Bill adds addition funds to TIFA, the Transportation Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act. The state hope to get a low interest loan of $5-6 billion to build a new bridge.

Video: via YouTube

Nyack People & Places, a weekly series that features photos and profiles of citizens and scenes near Nyack, NY, is sponsored by Sun River Health.

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