Senator Tony Avella- the man you can trust to be on your side

Remember to vote for Tony Avella on Tuesday, September 9

Senator Tony Avella has dedicated his life to fighting for middle-class families and progressive Democratic values. Senator Avella’s distinguished public service career began over 30 years ago as an aide to New York City Council Member Peter Vallone, Sr. Senator Avella later served as an aide to Mayors Koch and Dinkins and as Chief of Staff to the late State Senator Leonard Stavisky and to State Senator Toby Stavisky. Prior to seeking public office, Senator Avella served in numerous capacities as a civic activist and was a member of Queens Community Board #7. In 1997, Senator Avella was awarded New York State’s Community Service Award for his numerous volunteer and civic endeavors on behalf of all New Yorkers.

In 2001, Senator Avella won election to the New York City Council in the 19th District – Northeast Queens and was re-elected with an overwhelming majority in both the 2003 and 2005 elections. As a member of the City Council, Senator Avella served as Chair of the Zoning and Franchises Committee and was a member of five Council committees: Higher Education, Housing and Buildings, Fire and Criminal Justice Services, Land Use, and Veterans.

Senator Avella was also the founder and Chair of the first Italian-American Caucus of the City Council. During his tenure on the Council, Senator Avella authored several important pieces of legislation. Signed into law in 2005, his “Demolition by Neglect” bill enabled the Landmarks Preservation Commission to prevent the willful destruction of our City’s treasured landmarks by unscrupulous property owners. Senator Avella’s legislation was strongly supported by 46 preservation and civic groups including the Landmarks Conservancy, the Historic Districts Council and the National Historic Trust.

As a trusted public servant, Senator Avella has made fighting over-development and protecting our quality of life his top priorities. In the City Council, Senator Avella led the fight citywide against overdevelopment, the proliferation of McMansions, and other major abuses of the City’s building and zoning codes. In an effort to preserve the unique residential character and quality of life in neighborhoods throughout the City, Senator Avella helped create new zoning districts such as R2A, which prevents the construction of McMansions, rezoned major portions of his district as well as numerous other neighborhoods in the City, and enacted citywide amendments to the “Community Facilities” section.

Senator Avella’s hard work resulted in the first real changes in the City’s zoning code in over 40 years. In addition to his efforts to stop out-ofcharacter construction, Senator Avella was at the forefront of the battle to reform the City’s Department of Buildings and the Board of Standards and Appeals. Senator Avella was also the acknowledged leader in the City Council for landmark preservation, animal welfare, good government, and Veterans’ issues and benefits. As a member of the City Council, Senator Avella refused the “lulu”; an additional taxpayer funded salary increase in return for loyalty to council leadership instead of taxpayers.

Senator Avella fought against and subsequently refused the 25% City Council pay raise, which he considered unethical. Senator Avella was honored by numerous fraternal organizations, civic associations, sports and school/educational groups. Senator Avella has received such honors as the “Friend In High Places Award” from the Historic District Council, the Community Mayor’s Humanitarian Award, the coveted Lucy G. Moses Preservation Award from the New York Landmarks Conservancy, and the Benefactors’ Award from the Alley Pond Environmental Center.

In 2009, Senator Avella received the “New York City Human Rights Award” for obtaining the highest score of elected officials in New York City on the Human Rights Project’s report cards. A city-wide human rights coalition with over 100 groups from all over the City, the Human Rights Project is the lead organization of the New York City Human Rights Initiative.

First elected to the State Senate in 2010, Senator Avella, as a freshman senator, was appointed ranking member of the Cities and Environmental Conservation Committees, and has served on the Education, Aging, Banking, and Veterans, Homeland Security and Military Affairs Committees. His reputation as a staunch reformer has helped to bring real change to Albany.

As a state Senator, he is proud of bringing ethics reform to New York’s Capitol, and has again refused any “lulus” for his committee positions. A strong advocate for reform and transparency in government, Senator Avella is fighting to transform the State Senate so that it works for the people once again. Senator Avella spent his first few years in Albany fighting for the people that elected him. He is proud to have voted for four on-time budgets without raising taxes. As ranking member of the Environmental Conservation Committee, he lead the fight in advocating for a ban on hydrofracking, an extremely dangerous drilling practice that poses a risk to local water supplies.

He introduced and passed in the Senate legislation that would equalize co-op and condo property tax assessments with one-two and three family homes and help lower costs at the gas pump. Re-elected by an overwhelming majority in 2012, Senator Avella has continued his dedicated service to the people of the 11th Senatorial District. He has continued to fight for progressive legislation by working to increase the minimum wage, pass the SAFE Act – the toughest gun control laws in the nation, and implement Universal Pre-K. He has prioritized women’s rights by fighting for and co-sponsoring the Women’s Equality Act.

He is an avid advocate for animal rights, having introduced multiple bills in support of the protection of animals, as well as sounded the alarm against animal rights violations. During this past legislative session, Senator Avella passed seventeen bills, four of which have been passed in the Assembly and two of which have been signed into law. He currently serves as the Chair of the Social Services Committee, Vice-Chair of the Environmental Conservation Committee, and is a member of the Transportation, Education, Codes, Housing, NYC Education, Insurance, Judiciary and Banks Committees. Senator Avella is a graduate of Hunter College of the City University of New York.

He is a lifelong Queens resident and currently resides in Whitestone with his wife Judith. Avella has been endorsed by a number of Unions which include Local 246 , SEIU Automotive/Mechanical, Motor Vehicle Operations Union Local 983, 1199 SEIU, United Healthcare East, Communications Workers of America (CWA) District 1 Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union (RWDSU), Plumbers Union Local 1, International Union of Elevator Constructors (IUEC), Uniformed Firefighters Association of New York (UFA-NYC), Uniformed EMTs, Paramedics & Fire Inspectors – Local 2507, FDNY, Fire Alarm Dispatchers Benevolent Association, FDNY, New York State Troopers, Council of Administrators and Supervisors, Nassau County Sheriff’s Correction Officer Benevolent Association, Correction Officers Benevolent Association (COBA), NYC Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association (PBA), Public Employees Federation (PEF), New York State Supreme Court Officers, New York State PBA, New York State Nurses Association, New York State Police Investigators Association. Mayor Bill de Blasio and Congressmember Steve Israel are among the elected officials who have endorsed Tony.

The organizations which have endorsed him are League of Humane Voters; League of Conservation Voters, Empire State Pride Agenda, Citizens Union and Sierra Club.

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