Edwin J. Day
I look to maximize the accessibility of, and connection to, government for the people in this community. Simply put, I will make every effort to make life just a little bit easier for those whom I serve.Ed Day, Rockland County Legislature - Jan. 5th, 2006
Ed Day is a long time civic leader, law enforcement and security expert, and former president of the Little Tor Neighborhood Association who has resided in New City for nearly 30 years. After years of volunteer community service, he ran for public office for the first time in 2005, and now serves the people of Rockland as the Legislator for District #5 (New City-Pomona). He was overwhelmingly re-elected by his constituents in 2007 and 2011; and already has been recognized by his peers by serving in legislative leadership positions in three of his six years in the Legislature.
Ed also serves on the Public Safety, Planning and Public Works, and Economic Development committees, along with the Solid Waste Authority. He also is the legislative liaison for ARC of Rockland, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Rockland, and Jawonio. Ed is most proud to say that he is the first member of the law enforcement community to be elected to the Rockland County Legislature.
During one television show in 2006, Ed was introduced as an elected representative who,
"In only one short year, he has become well known as one of the most visible and uncommonly accessible Legislators in memory". This is an observation few here in Rockland County would dispute.
Professionally, Ed has served as a Detective Commander with the New York City Police Department, Chief of Detectives for the Baltimore Police Department, a Corporate Director of Security, and presently is a Senior Security Consultant for a major New York City security systems firm. Ed is clear about his concept of elected service, stating simply that "This is not a career for me; It is simply a continuation of service to a community that has given me and my family so much." In furtherance of this tenet of service, Ed has declined entry into the County pension system and has pledged to NEVER accept any pay raise for as long as he is employed elsewhere while serving as a County Legislator.
To his constituents, Ed says, "You deserve a proactive approach to representation. You should not have to schlep down to government meetings to have your legislator see the obvious in his or her own district. You deserve a legislator that has been, and will continue to be, intimately involved in all aspects of our community and the government process."
In keeping with that promise, Ed continues his broad based, community outreach that he commenced just 48 hours after becoming Legislator-elect. He met with numerous civic groups across the district, such as The Condos at Heritage Drive, Lake Lucille, Little Tor Neighborhood Association, and South Little Tor Civic Association; conferred with many officials at the county and town levels; visited with a number of constituents in their homes; spoken with RCC students and faculty, local PTA's, and school officials; listened to the concerns of the business community through the Chambers of Commerce, and the Rockland Business Association; attended Clarkstown and Pomona Town and Planning Board meetings regarding critical issues in our community, such as the Cropsey Farms purchase and the development of the Bradlees' Shopping Center; met with our local youth groups and not-for-profit agencies; sat down with our local heroes, the volunteers who respond to our fires and critical care needs; and even had the opportunity to assist his neighbors off New Hempstead Road, the Camelot community, and Forest Drive in Haverstraw.
He established "Listening Tours" throughout his District that has included meeting his neighbors in shopping centers and also at their homes in communities such as The New City Condo's, Squadron Garden Apartments, Crystal Hill, and the Sunrise Senior Living development. From his "bringing government to the people" he was able to identify and address a myriad of issues that ranged from traffic problems, high utility rates, drainage problems, and a number of quality of life concerns.
Ed also established a cost free communication that is unrivaled in the County Legislature. His FREE e-mail "Community Updates" about issues affecting our local community now reaches over 3500 local families, and has been the source of breaking news regarding issues of importance; important civic and governmental meeting; and matters of critical public safety. He also utilizes social media to get information out to the community, and over 1700 citizens are on his FaceBook page. Ed was widely recognized in utilizing these communication tools as a lifeline to bring information and assistance to his neighbors when Hurricane Irene and the October snowstorm wreaked havoc upon the community in 2011, and during Superstorm Sandy in 2012.
Ed's background is community service, and he is well known throughout the County for a number of endeavors. As a volunteer in government, Ed served on the Clarkstown Open Space and Planning Board Comprehensive Plan Committee. He continues his advocacy locally, and is regularly seen at many local meetings. Ed served on the New City Hamlet Center Vision Plan Committee so as to ensure a comprehensive effort by all levels of government that truly serves our residents and local business in and around Main Street; sponsored a Medicare "Part D" seminar for seniors and their families; introduced legislation designed to increase the blood supply here in Rockland; fought to roll back gasoline taxes and toll hikes; sponsored hearings on the safety and operations of the Tappan Zee Bridge; worked to protect consumers by issuing informational "fraud alerts" for gift cards; submitted legislation to stop unlicensed contractors from victimizing homeowners, and has introduced legislation to withdraw completely from the MTA.
He has now brought that advocacy and impact formally to the County level of government. Ed believes strongly that "There is no such thing as a 'town' or 'county' problem; There are people issues, family issues, community issues, all that merit the full attention from the county level of government."
Ed continues to involve himself in numerous battles on behalf of his constituents. Some examples included stopping a plan to construct an Access Road off New Hempstead Road that would have betrayed both the quality of life of the community and the environment was stopped; thwarting an attempt to scale back hours of operation at the New City Post Office; identifying and exposing the arsenic scam that affected our water supply; speaking out and standing with neighbors at every FAA protest held in the County; helping prevent massive and inappropriate development at the "White Gate" area on Route 304 adjacent to homes on Long Clove Road; joining neighbors to stop the indiscriminate cutting down of trees by Orange and Rockland; mitigating the installation of a cellular tower on Ridge Road; securing improved traffic signage on Phillips Hill Road; lobbying for the successful passage of a local law that addressed the proliferation of illegal Massage Parlors; holding Orange and Rockland accountable for their performance during the storms in 2011 and 2012; and lobbying against the massive Patrick Farms development adjacent to his district in Pomona .
Ed's reputation as a fervent advocate for our youth and their safety is witnessed by the fact that he is a recipient of the PTA Lifetime Achievement Award. This long time commitment to youth service goes back years, and Ed's history in this area includes service as PTA Legislative Delegate, where he lobbied for what eventually became "Megan's Law," and his creation of the Abduction Prevention Curriculum taught in the Clarkstown Schools, which he introduced as a PTA pilot project in Little Tor Elementary School.
In 2007, Ed was presented with the "Special Award of Honor" by the Rockland County Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (SPCC) for his "continued dedication to law enforcement and in particular his quest to protect Rockland County's children".
Ed continues to be involved directly with our young people, having coached for 20 years in this community with New City Little League, Clarkstown Recreation, and the New City Rams Football program, and is still coaching youth football to this day. This has given him unique insight to the compelling issues facing our young people today, and he is regularly seen at local school events, such as "Parents as Reading Partners" and teaching children about personal safety at school "Health Fairs" and other forums.
"As someone who has been involved in youth issues for years, I fully understand the fact that they are our future, and deserve our trust, belief, and protection", and by his regular presence, Ed has become a "partner in government" with our local schools. He looks to help identify and address compelling issues affecting our students, and confront the undeniable problem of legal and illegal substance abuse, such as alcohol and steroids, by supporting community initiatives designed to combat these problems. Ed's "hands on" approach includes membership on the Clarkstown Community Task Force and as a sports coach of our young people.
In addition, Ed has been working with youth sports organizations in an attempt to establish a county wide protective policy to ensure our young people do not suffer "repetitive use" and other unnecessary injuries playing sports; work with local community groups, towns, schools, and youth groups to establish a viable and effective network of youth centers; and attempt to improve the availability of fields for our youngsters to play. To that end, Ed played an integral part in helping New City Little League procure a 50 year lease for the Strawtown Fields from the United Water Co., which will now allow the New City Little League to expand and better serve our children.
When Ed first ran for office, he vowed to address the issue of better protecting our children from the violent sexual predators that had been moving into this community at an alarming rate, saying "We need to provide our law enforcement professionals with every tool available to protect our children BEFORE they become victims".
In furtherance of that pledge, Ed authored and introduced successful legislation establishing "Sex Offender Free Zones". Local Law #1 gave law enforcement a preventative tool by creating what Ed called "a bubble of protection" for our children by barring violent registered sex offenders from residing, working, or loitering within 1000 feet of any location where our children typically congregate, such as schools, playgrounds, and athletic facilities.
Ed has also sponsored a number of consumer protection based pieces of legislation that became local law. Local Law#7 bans the sale of expired perishable goods, protecting your rights as you purchase milk, meat, vegetable, and egg products; over the counter medicines; and baby food. It also regulates the "off sale" of other expired products such as bread by ensuring they are conspicuously marked, and for the first time provides consumers with the ability to initiate a formal follow up investigation by Consumer Protection.
After seeing a number of his constituents importuned by retailers to purchase memberships to buy gasoline at local big box stores, Ed introduced what became Local Law #10, clarifying the fact that big box stores cannot legally charge you a membership fee to buy gasoline. Further, conspicuous signs must now be posted to ensure that everyone is aware of their rights.
And in response to escalating cases of people being ripped off by itinerant and unlicensed home improvement contractors, Ed sponsored what became Local Law #3, the Rockland County Consumer Home Improvement Protection Act, stopping these criminals cold by authorizing the impoundment of the tools of their illegal activities.
When a U.S. Supreme Court decision allowed the unfettered access for hate groups to picket the funerals of service men and women killed in action, Ed introduced Local Law #4, the Funeral Privacy Act, that gave law enforcement the legal ability to protect the rights of all people simply looking to put their loved ones to eternal rest, by barring all demonstration activities from within 750' of any area of service or memorial.
Ed has also introduced legislation establishing a "Patient's Bill of Rights" here in Rockland; designating the "Rapkin Property", Hi Tor Ridge Line, and Davies Farm as Open Space; instituting a taxpayer and environmentally responsive "Green Procurement Policy" in Rockland; securing a gateway to Dutch Gardens and additional parking in the vicinity of the Courthouse on South Main Street; gaining reimbursements for software designed to combat Medicaid fraud; and utilizing less expensive federal GSA schedules for law enforcement equipment. He has been recognized by many as the driving force behind getting the Thruway Authority to respond to the concerns of Rocklanders as they suffered through nightmarish commutes across the Tappan Zee Bridge during the summer and fall of 2008.
The issue of the ever-increasing cost of living in our County is a significant issue that has our families juggling their monthly budgets. Ed firmly believes that "County spending and budgets that are based on the taxpayer funding of government MUST reflect the same fiscal reality we all face in our daily lives." Ed sponsored legislation to stop government from realizing windfall profits from our beleaguered consumers by capping the sales tax on gasoline; eliminating the County Tourism Department and other superfluous highly paid government positions; sent back "sole bid" contracts submitted to the legislature for approval; voted against pay raises for high ranking county officials; initiating reasonable spending limits of the Public Arts program; and fought to stop toll hikes.
Ed had been steadfast in every budget review since December 2008, departing from the majority of legislators and voting "No" on each and every proposed budget since. His consistent record of questioning the budget process over the past few years was supported by the findings of the "white paper" promulgated by the Rockland Business (RBA) Association that criticized the efficacy and accuracy of the approved budgets. As stated by the Chairman of the Board of RBA (December 12th, 2012), "It was 2008 when myself and others from the RBA expressed concerns over the County budget, and the only legislator who would even listen that there was a crisis was Ed Day".
In stating that "Government cannot spend what it does not have, and more to the point, we cannot spend more than what the ultimate funder of government, our taxpayer, does not have", Ed continues to call for the executive branch to submit a budget earlier than required under the Charter; ensure accurate revenue projections; to recognize the fiscal crisis upon us; and commence a complete restructuring of government operations, beginning with the basic precept of zero based budgeting. In addition, he took an unheard of step by introducing successful legislation designed to improve the transparency and efficiency of the budget process and got the State Comptroller to conduct a full audit of County government operations and finances.
Ed believes that a broad fiscal impact statement that measures the full cost of a bill, not just potential increased taxation, is a must before ANY local law is implemented, and has said that "Government cannot operate in a vacuum, and there must be an understanding that government mandates and programs can, and have, resulted in an unintended fiscal impact upon the people. I truly believe that government can be efficient, yet compassionate, and I bring the managerial, executive, and practical life experience to move government in that direction". To that end, Ed has again called for a complete review and cross referencing of all contract agencies that do business with the County, and has questioned a number of "single bid" contracts awarded by the County so as to ensure our taxpayer gets top value for their tax dollar
His legislative agenda for 2013 includes working towards a restructuring of County government; taking steps to increase wealth and the tax base in the County in order to hold the line on taxes; aggressively pursuing avenues of action designed to enhance economic development; establishing partnerships with other levels of government that will streamline service delivery and create efficiencies that would reduce the cost of services to taxpayers; identifying and implementing an effective strategy in support of animal care and control here in Rockland; improving communications with residents during times of emergencies; responding to the $40 to $60 million dollar value gap by withdrawing from the MTA; recommending further structural changes in government operations; and continue working with the Town of Clarkstown and their project of the revitalization of the New City Hamlet Center.
Ed has a strong history of service to the residents of this community, most notably as the President of the Little Tor Neighborhood Association here in New City. He has, and continues to advocate and lobby for this community to improve the quality of life here, most notably in the areas of stream remediation, traffic control, and the protection of our residents from unwarranted intrusion from development.
Ed has delivered on his pledge to his constituents that "The hallmark of my service as your legislator will be a continuation of my ground up, hands on approach to representation of, and advocacy for, the people, not the system." This type of dedication and service was formally recognized well before his becoming a legislator when, in 2003, Ed was awarded the Distinguished Service Award of the County of Rockland. He has consistently opposed and voted against politically motivated appointments to the Legislature. He continues this involvement by serving on the Board of Directors for the Foundation Board of ARC of Rockland; Advisory Board of the Rockland County Police Hispanic Society; and Executive Board of the Little Tor Neighborhood Association.
Ed holds membership and/or Board responsibility in a number of other organizations, including the Rockland County Shields, Clarkstown Community Task Force, Little Tor Neighborhood Association, the NAACP, Fraternal Order (FOP) of Police, PTA, Haverstraw Brick Museum, New City Chamber of Commerce, AARP, Hudson Valley 10-13 Association, and the Clarkstown North 4th Quarter Club, just to name a few. He is also a proud union member of the NYC Police Department's Lieutenant's Benevolent Association.
Some examples of Ed's "hands on" community service includes being a Facilitator for the Rotary Youth Forum, a Partner at Abbott House Mini-Golf Outing at Germonds Park, a Gate Manager at the New City Little League ARC/Bill Berletic Tournament, fundraising for United Hospice of Rockland, and delivering dinners to our seniors with our "Meals on Wheels" program.
Ed and his wife, Jean, have resided in central New City for nearly thirty years, and raised both their sons in this community. Oldest son Chris, a graduate of Yale University, Class of '07; a combat veteran who was an Airborne qualified Army Ranger and Captain in the United States Army 4-73 Cavalry Squadron of the 82nd Airborne Division; and is presently pursuing his Masters at Columbia University. Chris served with distinction in two wars; "Operation Iraqi Freedom" and "Operation Enduring Freedom", receiving numerous citations that included the Bronze Star, Combat Infantryman Badge, and Army Achievement Medal. Mike, the Day family's younger son, is a graduate of Hagen School of Business of Iona College, Class of '09, and achieved 2nd Team - All Conference of the MAAC - Division 1 Football champion Iona Gaels. He is an Airborne qualified soldier in the United States Army, assigned to Special Warfare Center, Ft. Bragg, serving as a Sergeant with the U.S. Army Special Forces, also known as the Green Berets. The Day family is also blessed to have their first grandson, Christopher Edwin Day, Jr., affectionately known as CJ.
Constituents may contact Ed through the Legislature @ the main number (638-5100) or speak directly with his Constituent Assistant, Ms. Amanda Roman (638-5751).
Finally, and in order to maximize accessibility to both government service and their legislator, neighbors are urged to e-mail Ed directly at firstname.lastname@example.org. Doing so will enable constituents to receive FREE e-mail "Community Updates" about compelling issues affecting the community.