Dave is a native Central New Yorker, born and raised in Oneida. He has deep roots in our community and has dedicated his professional life to public service.
Since being first elected to the New York State Senate in November 2004, Dave has prioritized delivering real results for the people he represents. As a state senator, he most recently successfully fought for funding to:
• protect our clean drinking water from the threat of toxic algal blooms
• support ongoing Lyme disease and tick-borne illness prevention efforts
• combat the growing opioid epidemic
Dave places a premium on prompt, courteous, and effective constituent service for his constituents. In response to constituent calls, he has, among numerous other bills, sponsored legislation to require that telemarketers provide correct caller ID, protect children by making sure bus stops are not located near homes of registered sex offenders, require life ring buoys on piers in the canal system, and help constituents who are unfairly double taxed. Dave has responded to hundreds of constituents who have called for help with issues they couldn’t resolve on their own.
Dave is strong supporter of progressive values and legislation, evidenced by his votes to raise the state’s minimum wage, equal pay for women, and implement the best paid family leave program in the nation. One of his most significant votes was for marriage equality – the right for all New Yorkers to marry regardless of sexual orientation. He co-sponsors the New York Health Act, legislation that would provide a single-payer health care plan for all New Yorkers, and the Reproductive Health Act to preserve women’s reproductive health options. And when harmful federal policies threatened immigrants and refugees, he helped create the Immigrant Defense Fund.
Dave is working to revitalize our communities, reduce neighborhood blight, and spur economic development in our downtowns. He sponsored legislation to create the Greater Syracuse Land Bank, which acquires vacant, tax-delinquent properties and returns them to productive use, thereby reversing the decline of property values in blighted areas and putting properties back on the tax rolls. He has sponsored several other laws that promote investment in communities, such as the Historic Rehabilitation Tax Credit, which has driven much of the downtown Syracuse revitalization.
Job growth is another area of focus. He created two job readiness programs – Build 2 Work and the Manufacturer’s Intermediary Apprenticeship Program – to help employers cut through bureaucratic red tape and workers to train for good-paying jobs in area industries.
He created Inclusive U at Syracuse University, a unique program that supports students of all ages with intellectual and developmental disabilities who want to experience college life in a fully inclusive setting.
Dave is readily available to his constituents at the public outreach fairs and community events he sponsors each year. His popular Senior Fair in Madison County and the Community Resource Fairs in Syracuse educate residents about free governmental and community resources. His electronics recycling events – where he helps unload cars alongside volunteers – have collected more than 500 tons of e-waste over the past five years. He also sponsors an annual coat collection in early winter for refugee families arriving in Syracuse, as well as presentations to help senior citizens learn how to avoid being the victims of scams.
District and Committee Information
Dave currently represents New York’s 53rd Senate District, which covers most of the city of Syracuse, the towns of Cicero, Fabius, LaFayette, Pompey, Salina, and Tully; all of Madison County; and two towns in Oneida County: Augusta and Kirkland. He serves on the Senate Agriculture; Finance; Health; Racing, Gaming, and Wagering; Rules; and Transportation Committees. He is a member of the NYS Senate Task Force on Lyme and Tick-Borne Diseases, the NYS Joint Senate Task Force on Heroin and Opioid Addiction, the Rural Resources Commission, and the Senate Select Commission on Libraries.
Dave received his Bachelor’s degree from SUNY Potsdam and his Master’s degree from the University of Connecticut.
He began his public service by working in the State Assembly as an aide to former State Assembly Majority Leader Michael Bragman, from 1989 to 1995. While in this position, he gained a thorough working knowledge of the legislative process and helped to develop state and local policies to make government more accessible to New Yorkers.
Dave worked at WCNY-TV/FM from 1995 through 2004. While there, he served as Vice President of Communications and as the host of the midday talk show Hour CNY, which focused on current state, national, and world events and issues that affected Central New York communities.