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RESULTS: NYS Ballot proposals
Rochester, N.Y. Check the results of the six proposals that appeared on Tuesday's ballot: http://nyenr.elections.state.ny.us/
Proposal One - Authorizing Casino Gaming
According to the ballot, the purpose of the proposal is to allow the Legislature to authorize and regulate up to seven casinos for the purposes of promoting job growth, increasing aid to schools, and permitting local governments to lower property taxes through revenue.
New York already has five Las Vegas-style casinos on Indian land that have table games like blackjack and roulette and video slot machines. Three are in western New York, one in central New York, and one in northern New York near the Canadian border. The state also has nine so-called Racinos at racetracks around the state that have electronic slot machines, including the Aqueduct thoroughbred track in Queens.
When asked whether new casinos would bring new problems with gambling addiction, UFT President Michael Mulgrew said the new casinos would simply keep in state those New Yorkers who are currently spending $1.2 billion a year gambling out of state and they would bring sorely needed education money.
Proposal Two Additional Civil Service Credit for Veterans with Disabilities Certified Post-Appointment
Under the State Constitution, veterans get additional credit on civil service exams. However, if a veteran is classified as disabled, they will receive more credit.
Because civil service credit for military service is applied only once if a veteran is classified after he or she becomes disabled, he or she does not receive the higher amount of credit.
This amendment essentially creates an exception or loop-hole to the one-time-only credit rule.
Proposal Three Exclusion of Indebtedness Contracted for Sewage Facilities
The New York constitution places limits on debts that counties, cities, towns, and villages incur. Right now, debt that happened between 1962 through the end of 2013 for the construction or reconstruction of sewage facilities is exempt from constitutional debt limits.
However this proposal would extend the exemption to include these debts through the end of 2023.
Proposal 4 - Settling Disputed Title in the Forest Preserve
This proposal is based on a land dispute. All of the state-owned land within the Adirondacks must be kept "forever wild" under the State Constitution. Titles to parcels of land in the town of Long Lake, Hamilton County are in question.
The proposal would allow New York to give up its claim to land parcels in exchange for forest land of greater value. That land would be added to Adirondack Park.
The land exchange would only happen if the New York State Legislature determines that the land would benefit the forest preserve more than disputed parcels.
Proposal Five In Relation to a Land Exchange in the State Forest Preserve with NYCO Minerals, Inc.
The proposed amendment will allow NYCO Minerals, Inc., a private company, to continue its mining operations in the town of Lewis, Essex County.
The proposed amendment would allow the State to convey approximately 200 forest preserve acres to NYCO Minerals for mining. NYCO Minerals would give the State at least the same amount of land of at least the same value, with a minimum assessed value of $1 million. This land would be added to the forest preserve. When NYCO Minerals finishes mining, the company would restore the condition of the land it received in the exchange and return it to the forest preserve.
Proposal Six Increasing Age until which Certain State Judges Can Serve
The proposal would mean increasing to the age of 80 the maximum age until which Justices of the Supreme Court and Judges of the Court of Appeals may serve.
Judges of the Court of Appeals serve 14-year terms, but under the State Constitution, they must retire once they reach the mandatory retirement age of 70, even if they have not served their terms to completion.
Four current members of the U.S. Supreme Court are over 70. The current mandatory retirement ages were set in 1869.
Information courtesy: http://www.nyccfb.info/public/voter-guide/general_2013/ballot_proposals.aspx and http://www.elections.ny.gov/ProposedConsAmendments.html