We've made no secret of our belief that New York State Senator Antoine Thompson is completely useless as a legislator. Well, completely useless to those in WNY who elected him to represent us. They love him in NYC.
He supported the "sweep" of $550 million in NYPA funds to fill the state's budget hole, he voted for a state budget that increases spending by $9 billion, and he has lead the charge on anti-business legislation, such as the bottle bill.
Although we'll rarely cite another news source in its entirety, we felt this was a necessary story to convey to those in Western New York. It is a story that appeared in the May 31 edition of the New York Post. This is what you get when you surround yourself with those who are just as deceitful and deceptive as you are. Thompson, please do all of us in Western New York who look to you to represent us in Albany a favor and resign; you're a disgrace.
The story follows in its entirety.....
New York State Senator Antoine Thompson needs to check who he has working in his office -- for all is not as it seems. The Post called Thompson, chairman of the Environmental Conservation Committee and the driving force behind the "Bigger Better Bottle Bill," which seeks to slap a five-cent deposit on bottles of water, last week to see how Coca-Cola-owned Vitamin Water managed to be written out of the law.
Water drinks containing sugar -- like all of Vitamin Water's line -- are exempt from the deposit under the new law -- which was put on ice last week by a federal judge.
A staffer who identified himself as John Taylor answered the phone at Thompson's Albany office. He said the Buffalo-area senator was on his way back home and agreed to pass on a message. After a couple of days and several calls placed to both Thompson's Buffalo and Albany offices failed to get any response, another call was made to the home office to complain about the ineffectiveness of Taylor.
There, the staff was perplexed. They claimed to have nobody on staff called John Taylor. They said the Albany staffer is Shawn Curry, a recent hire as a legislative assistant.
So who is John Taylor? That's what we wanted to know. So we called him up.
The Post: "Hi, is this John Taylor?"
The Post: " But isn't your name really Shawn Curry? And if so why are you giving out a fake name from the Senator's office?"
"Could you hold please . . .[in the same voice] This is Shawn Curry."
The Post: "Why are you using a fake name from the Senator's office, Shawn?"
"I am very busy, I have business to attend to, I can't answer your question."
We finally reached the good senator and explained the Taylor/Curry episode. Thompson said Curry/Taylor was "young and inexperienced" but that he would be "dealt with very aggressively."
The lawmaker also allowed that "we are rewriting the bottle bill to include Vitamin Water and all other waters with sugar in them. Nobody will be left out," he said.
The bottle bill has faced stiff legal opposition from bottled-water manufacturers who claim the expense of changing packaging to comply with the law placed them at a disadvantage in the market.
Following a court ruling in Manhattan on Friday, the new bill -- with Vitamin Water included -- looks set to go into effect next April 1.