Jose (Jose) M. Serrano (D-29)

State Senator Jose Serrano

Jose (Jose) M. Serrano (D-29)
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Capitol: 518.455.2795
FAX: 518.426.6886
District: 212.828.5829
Senator
Room 420-C State Capitol Building
Albany, NY 12247
335 East 100th Street
New York, NY 10029
Residence:South Bronx, NY

Committee Assignments

Bio

Senator Jose M. Serrano, a lifelong South Bronx resident, was elected to the New York State Senate in November of 2004. He serves as the Ranking Member on the Senate Committee for Cultural Affairs, Tourism, Parks and Recreation. His other committee assignments include- Aging, Agriculture, Consumer Protection, Mental Health, and Veterans. After graduating from Manhattan College in the Bronx, Senator Serrano joined the New York Shakespeare Festival, where he deepened his love for the arts and culture, with a true understanding of the role the arts play in education and community revitalization. After leaving the Shakespeare Festival, Serrano was elected to the New York City Council (District 17) in 2001, representing the South Bronx. As Chair of the Council's Committee on Cultural Affairs, Serrano was an outspoken proponent for the arts, libraries and cultural institutions. Senator Serrano resisted budget cuts to programs in New York City libraries, and, with his colleagues in the Council, restored an average of $20 million each year to maintain library service during the city's fiscal crisis. He also fought to restore $40 million over three years to cultural organizations, especially small, neighborhood-based groups that nurture local artists. In 2004, Serrano was elected to the New York State Senate, representing what is now the 29th Senate District. His district has perhaps the greatest socio-economic and cultural diversity in the state, including neighborhoods in the South and West Bronx, East Harlem, Upper Yorkville, Roosevelt Island, Central Park and the Upper West Side. Serrano's commanding 82 percent of the vote demonstrated the voters' clear mandate for change and reform in Albany and in their community. In Albany, Senator Serrano has introduced a wide variety of bills championing the arts, keeping housing affordable, protecting public health, fostering economic development, defending immigrant rights, closing the income inequality gap and preserving the environment. Among Serrano's legislation passed by the State Senate are- one to mandate the New York State Department of Health to conduct an intensive study on the alarmingly high asthma rates in the Bronx; another requiring the Department of Environmental Conservation to publish a list of areas in the state that are most adversely affected by existing environmental hazards, so that areas that have already been impacted by contamination do not become victims of further environmental damage; and another to incentivize affordable development on vacant properties in Northern Manhattan. During the 2008-2009 legislative term, the State Senate passed a Serrano bill making "I Love New York" the official state slogan. Throughout the 2010 budget negotiations, as Chair of the committee, Senator Serrano led the fight against the closure of New York State Parks and, along with parks advocates, succeeded in keeping State Parks open to the public. Serrano has also been a champion for openness and transparency in government. He led an initiative to improve the tracking of state stimulus funding; launched "Open Legislation" a search engine that allows individuals to search, navigate, share and comment on all Senate Legislation; and in 2009, while in the Senate Majority, he introduced a bill to reform the Legislature's member item system by making it fair, equitable, and transparent. An avid enthusiast of the great outdoors, Serrano continues to advocate for various initiatives that are important opportunities to engage New Yorkers in preserving and beautifying our beloved state and city parks, such as I Love My Park Day and Earth Hour. Earth Hour is a Senate resolution sponsored by Serrano every year that actively encourages all New Yorkers to participate and create awareness for New York State's abundance of natural resources. As a long-time supporter of the arts, Senator Serrano has consistently called for more arts and music education in our schools. Serrano tirelessly advocates for the importance of returning arts and music to school curriculum, with a firm understanding of the arts proven beneficial effect on overall academics. In addition, Serrano is a firm believer that local arts organizations add to our cultural fabric and act as an economic engine for communities throughout New York State. The Senator is also a vocal defender of immigrant rights, appearing on national television and local media outlets. Serrano, along with many of his colleagues, launched the "East Harlem Against Deportation" coalition. The initiative aimed to stop unjust deportations that destroy families in New York, and developed a comprehensive report with multiple policy recommendations to protect the immigrant community on a City and State level. Senator Serrano brings a unique energy and commitment to public service. He is proud of his innovative off-site constituent services hours that are held every day (except Fridays) in neighborhoods throughout the 29th Senate District. He has employed forward-thinking communication outreach methods to connect the distinct neighborhoods, and the six different community board districts that he represents. Both in Albany and the neighborhoods he represents, he works tirelessly to ensure that his constituents receive quality services and their fair share of government funding. Senator Serrano, his wife and two children reside in the South Bronx.

Election / Personal Info

First Elected: 2004    Next Election: 2022
DOB: 6/19/1972
Counties Representing
New York City