Washington, D.C. – Congresswoman Elise Stefanik joined her colleagues in sending a letter, led by Congressman John Katko (NY-24), calling on Governor Kathy Hochul to address the lawlessness and disorder created by New York State’s failed bail reform law.
“This past weekend, we witnessed the tragic consequences of Albany Democrats’ policies that have increased crime and demeaned our law enforcement community when Jason Rivera and Wilbert Mora, brave New York police officers, were fatally shot in the line of duty,” Stefanik said. “Albany Democrats’ reckless and dangerous bail reform policies and ‘defund the police’ stances have already failed to keep the residents of New York safe and put our communities at risk. I am calling on Governor Hochul to denounce all attempts to undercut law enforcement and dangerous bail reform efforts, and I am proud to offer a legislative alternative that supports our local law enforcement and our community members to work to keep the North Country and our state of New York safe.”
Specifically, the letter demands that Governor Kathy Hochul:
  • Work with the state legislature to advance a standard for New York State that provides judges with the necessary discretion to limit the release of individuals who pose a danger to our communities,
  • Take a strong and public stance against measures to “Defund the Police” and undercut law enforcement, and
  • Denounce dangerous efforts to limit the prosecution of serious offenses.
“In the face of incriminating data and growing calls on both sides of the aisle to address these dangerous standards, it is past time for your Administration to take the lead and call on the state legislature to make commonsense reforms to ensure public safety. We recognize the tragic toll this law has taken on countless families across New York, as well as on our law enforcement community, and we stand ready to support reform efforts that prioritize public safety at the federal level,” the lawmakers wrote.
In November, Stefanik joined Congressman John Katko (R-N.Y.) in introducing the Stop Enabling Repeat Violence and Endangering (SERVE) Our Communities Act to provide an incentive for states like New York to adopt policies that hold repeat offenders accountable and bolster public safety.
“As sponsors of the Stop Enabling Repeat Violence and Endangering (SERVE) Our Communities Act, we have been proud to put forward substantive legislation in Congress to address the absence of a “dangerousness standard” in New York State. Our legislation would provide $10 million annually in anti-recidivism funding for states that have a law on the books that allows a judge to consider the danger an individual poses to the community when determining bail or pretrial release conditions. Our legislation also promotes strong investments in law enforcement and combatting anti-police sentiment, two issues that have unfortunately seen a significant backslide in our state as a direct result of the “Defund the Police” movement and efforts by the far left to demonize law enforcement. With this in mind, the SERVE Our Communities Act should serve as the basis for comprehensive reforms at the state-level to prioritize the rule of law and ensure New York remains a safe place to raise a family or start a business,” the lawmakers continued.
Read the full letter here.