Norris: Albany’s “Pro-Criminal” Platform Punishes Law-Abiding Taxpayers

A Column from Assemblyman Mike Norris (R,C,I,Ref-Lockport)

The legislative discussion at our state Capitol is now filled with an expansive progressive agenda that is out of step with the priorities of Western New York families and taxpayers. As part of this movement, unfortunately, the priorities of criminals have taken center stage over the law-abiding citizens of our state.

There has been legislation to give free college tuition to prison inmates while the hardworking families across our state received little to no financial aid. There was a deal made to give free computer tablets to inmates. Then, as the last election approached, the governor started to parole serial cop-killers and pedophiles. Now legislation has been drafted to raise the wage inmates earn in prison by as much as 430 percent.

What about their victims? What about the millions of New Yorkers who are not breaking laws – who come home from work, spend time with their loved ones, and are struggling to make ends meet? What about the law-abiding taxpayers who are being asked to foot this bill? Quite frankly, it angers me that Albany continues to spend precious resources on these measures for criminals over hard working law-abiding citizens.

Over one million people have left our state due to high taxes and lack of good-paying jobs. Our state budget is over $170 billion – as much as Texas and Florida spend combined. We must cut spending and not waste taxpayers’ dollars on more perks for criminals in our prisons. Please know that I will continue to fight against this wasteful spending and stand up for the real priorities, like education and infrastructure, when deliberating our budget.