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  • The Hill: Moving Forward on Mental Health
    Posted in Opinion Pieces on January 27, 2015 | Preview rr

    I first met Timothy O' Clair at a little league game in 2001. Timothy was a bright and energetic youngster with the whole world ahead of him. Unfortunately, Timothy also suffered from a debilitating mental illness. When Timothy's insurance would no longer cover his treatment, his parents were forced to disown him in order to get treatment. Unable to receive the appropriate care, at the age of 12, Timothy tragically completed suicide. Timothy's struggle to get the care he needed is what first led me down the path of working to improve the mental health system in America. Read more

  • TU: Economy should work for everyone
    Posted in Opinion Pieces on January 15, 2015 | Preview rr

    So-called "dynamic scoring" completely invents a future where unlimited and unpaid-for tax cuts and loopholes for large corporations and the very wealthy create a more prosperous environment for us all – simply to circumvent the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office that Republican and Democratic majorities in Congress have used since 1974. Read more

  • HuffPo: Voices of McClellan Vets Silenced Daily by Gridlock in Washington
    Posted in Opinion Pieces on August 21, 2014 | Preview rr

    Many of us know veterans and active duty members. They are brothers, mothers, best friends, the person in the mirror and so many more. When these servicemembers entered the service, they didn't do so for the benefits promised or some get rich quick scheme. American veterans signed up and wore the uniform under a sense of duty and desire to keep our nation safe. These are the last people Members of Congress should break our country's promises with. Yet, that is what is happening to an unknown number of Americans who served at Fort McClellan in Alabama for decades. Read more

  • America needs to renew focus on women in workplace
    Posted in Opinion Pieces on April 7, 2014 | Preview rr

    As I travel throughout the Capital Region, the top concern I hear from constituents is creating jobs. We cannot get serious about helping the private sector create quality jobs without focusing first on the main drivers of our economy: The American middle class and those struggling to enter it. And we cannot boost the economy while hamstringing more than half of our workforce, which is exactly what we have been doing for decades by not supporting women in the workplace. Read more

  • Don't let another hurricane season blow by without climate action
    Posted in Opinion Pieces on June 4, 2013 | Preview rr

    As hurricane season begins and vulnerable coastal communities brace for high winds and storm surges, Congress needs to ask itself: What can we be doing to better protect and manage existing and new development along our coastlines?How can we minimize Read more

  • What I'd Tell Obama
    Posted in Opinion Pieces on May 18, 2012 | Preview rr

    Tonko: What I’d tell ObamaMay 8, 2012 at 5:31 am by Jay Jochnowitz, Editorial page editorRep. Paul Tonko writes about the region’s challenges and what he’d like to say to the president, with whom he’s traveling about Air Force One today. Nothing is more humbling than earning the trust of the constituents of the 21st Congressional District of New York to represent our region in the halls of Congress. But one thing does come close – having the opportunity to join with the President of the United S... Read more

  • Where are we two years after health care act?
    Posted in Opinion Pieces on April 17, 2012 | Preview rr

    Two years ago this week, the Affordable Care Act was signed into law. Some dubbed this an historic act. Others claimed it was a socialist takeover of our health care system. But many expressed to me their uncertainty as to what the law actually did and how it would impact them or their family. Two years later, let’s take a look at some of the facts.Some 5,900 young adults (26 and under) in the Capital Region have health insurance today who did not have it two years ago. Nationwide, over 2.5 mill... Read more

  • Shutting down state parks would be a mistake
    Posted in Opinion Pieces on April 17, 2012 | Preview rr

    To the editor,I am heartened to see the public concern over Governor Paterson's plan to close state parks as part of his effort to deal with the state's financial problems. It has also been encouraging to see state lawmakers step forward, voicing their advocacy to keep our parks open.It's understood that our state leaders have difficult choices to make as they work to close a huge budget deficit and reform the entire process so New Yorkers will enjoy a brighter future. However, closing our state... Read more

  • Support small businesses
    Posted in Opinion Pieces on April 17, 2012 | Preview rr

    While millions will cut short their Thanksgiving gatherings to get a place at the front of the line on Black Friday, you can avoid the rush, get some rest, and support local jobs by taking part in the second annual Small Business Saturday this weekend. Small Business Saturday encourages patronization of local businesses for holiday shopping. As consumers, we should embrace this mantra this weekend and throughout the year.Small business owners are America’s entrepreneurs and the engine of economi... Read more

  • Use oil subsidies to create clean energy
    Posted in Opinion Pieces on April 17, 2012 | Preview rr

    Plain and simple: Americans are better than the gasoline we put into our vehicles.Every day, I hear from people in our region that "gasoline prices are going up." "Can't you do something about this?" or "Can't we just drill more?" they ask.The facts that drive this oil debate can often be overlooked and warrant further examination.Domestic oil production last year rose to its highest level since 2003. More oil is now produced per year under President Barack Obama than during any year of Presiden... Read more

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