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Brian Luke Community Blogger, WGRZ-TV

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Mark's Minute: November 11, 2011

Mark's Minute: November 11, 2011
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 Remembering Our Veterans


Thanks for taking the time to read my newsletter. My staff and I use this free communication tool as a way to stay in touch with constituents and provide you with what I hope is useful information.

Veterans Day represents a special day in which our nation pays tribute to those who have served our country in uniform. I join millions of other Americans and give thanks for their contributions and their sacrifice, which helped to provide America with freedom and democracy for more than 200 years. We all must keep these brave men and women in our thoughts and prayers and thank them for everything they have done for our country.

No matter where they served or what position they held or how long they wore a uniform, let us not forget that our veterans risked their lives for us as they spread the causes of liberty and freedom. For that, every veteran deserves our deepest respect and thanks. Their courage, dedication and commitment, combined with their many selfless sacrifices, are what we honor this and every Veterans Day.

I am especially proud of the New York State residents who wore our country's uniform. These hometown heroes did their share to protect this country. They make me proud each and every day.

To properly pay tribute to all of our veterans, we must honor their sacrifice by never forgetting their service. We must do everything we can to make sure they get the benefits, health care and support they deserve and have rightfully earned. I have worked on various pieces of legislation during my time as a member of the New York State Senate to pass bills that protect and support our veterans. It is something that I am passionate about and will continue to focus on during my time as a senator.

Finally, while Veterans Day is a time to honor our past heroes, let us not forget those members of our country's Armed Forces who are currently serving. There are hundreds of thousands of troops who are overseas, including many New Yorkers, who currently stand in harm's way. They and their families remain in my thoughts and prayers because it is their heroism and valor that deserves our deepest gratitude.

God Bless America!

Please feel free to stay in touch and do not hesitate at any time to contact my staff in our Grand Island and Niagara Falls satellite offices or the district office in the W.J. Mahoney State Office Building in downtown Buffalo.

For more information on anything related to the 60th District, you can send me an e-mail at: or call 854-8705.

Thanks for reading!


 Getting Back To Work...
Exchanging Helmets For Hard Hats

On Veterans Day 2011, Senator Mark Grisanti, member of the Veterans, Military Affairs and Homeland Security Committee, is introducing a bill that not only helps Veterans get back to work, but also benefits employers for hiring those Veterans.

" I have talked with many Veterans here locally and throughout the state, and what I am hearing from them is that they are returning home from serving our country to a struggling job market and no jobs," said Senator Grisanti. "I plan to fix this, there has been enough grandstanding around the issue. This legislation provides relief to employers and opportunities for hard working Veterans to return home with a job."

The legislation calls for any employer who hires a Veteran that works at least 35 hours and remains employed for over one year to receive a $3,000 tax credit.  If the Veteran was wounded in service then it would be a $4,000 credit.

"With the future passage of this legislation, this will ensure that Veterans who risk their lives for our freedom will have a real economic opportunity when they come back into the workforce," said Grisanti.

Additionally President Obama announced that all troops will be out of Iraq by December,  The U.S. has already withdrawn more than 100,000 troops from Iraq. And Obama says the last 40,000 will be leaving by the end of this year.

David Bellavia enlisted in the United States Army in July 1999 and served for six years and earned the rank of Staff Sergeant. He led a squad of men in combat. He was awarded the Silver Star for his actions during the Second Battle of Fallujah and received the Bronze Star and the New York State Conspicuous Service Cross.

"While so many in Washington and Albany play hamlet with veterans issues, Senator Grisanti's "get it done"  approach is urgently needed," said Bellavia. "These men and women have bled for us on the battlefield. We owe them the opportunity to exchange their helmets for hard hats. Senator Mark Grisanti is doing just that," said Bellavia.

In Western New York, an estimated 900 Veterans under the age of 30 are unemployed, the numbers have not been released on how many of the 40,000 troops are from Western New York.

 "In light of the President's announcement and given the problem that already exists with unemployed veterans in our community, we must be proactive with legislation to ensure our veterans have an opportunity gain employment. Putting people back to work is one of my top  in the upcoming legislative session."

Putting People First! Not Politics. 

We raised over $3,700 during our T-Shirt special in the month of October. We mailed out close to 150 shirts to friends around Western New York. Thank you to everyone for the support! 

 Listening Sessions Scheduled For December

Grand Island 
Tuesday, December 6.  
Grand Island High School, 1100 Ransom Road 
6 to 7:30 pm.
Contact: Senator Grisanti's satellite office in Grand Island at 773-9600, ext. 654 or send an e-mail to: 

North Buffalo 
Thursday, December 8.
 North Buffalo Community Center,203 Sanders Road  
6 to 7:30 pm.
Contact: Call Senator Grisanti's office in Buffalo at 854-8705 or send an e-mail to:

These Listening Session are an opportunity for constituents to hear from their representative in Albany. Senator Grisanti will be speaking about his ideas for reforming our state government.  

Attendees will be able to ask questions and express their concerns about their community. Both session are free to the public with no cost to taxpayers. 

Recent Headlines

Use of social media saves money 
Be sure to stay connected by clicking on these links. We plan to continue to use social media tools and other free ways of sharing information with constituents.

Feel free to forward this e-mail to a friend who may be interested in reading it.

Thank you again for all of your support! 

Follow Senator Grisanti on Facebook and Twitter

Thanks for reading. Please stay in touch!


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