Congressman José E. Serrano

Representing the 15th District of New York

The Serrano Report - Volume XII, Issue #26

Nov 24, 2015
The Serrano Report

In Washington, DC

Congressman Serrano Reintroduces the Anti-Hunger Empowerment Act

Last week, Congressman José E. Serrano reintroduced the Anti-Hunger Empowerment Act of 2015.  The bill was originally introduced by Congressman Serrano during the 109th Congress as a way to replace administrative cost provisions within the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) to expand its ability to provide nutrition assistance to communities facing hunger insecurity.

“The holiday season is quickly approaching us, and for many of us the holidays are a time filled with togetherness, festivities, and food," said Congressman Serrano. "Sadly, millions of individuals and families will spend this season worrying about when their next meal is coming from or go without food altogether.

“No child or individual should have to go hungry in this country. The Anti-Hunger Empowerment Act of 2015 would allow the US Department of Agriculture to ensure a greater utilization of SNAP funding by food pantries, soup kitchens, and other charitable feeding programs to provide more meals to communities facing food hardship. Every household should have access to quality and nutritious food, and this legislation will help achieve that goal.”  

This legislation would:

•          Establish the Beyond the Soup Kitchen Grant Program to provide funds to community-based and faith-based charitable feeding organizations to expand their grassroots anti-hunger activities. These activities include providing nutrition education and helping individuals enroll in federal food assistance programs.

•          Expand the number of hours supplemental nutrition assistance office are open and reduce wait times at SNAP offices.

•          Remove burdensome and duplicative requirements that deter eligible Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) recipients from applying.

Congressman Serrano Votes Against Republican Syrian Refugee Bill

Last week, Congressman Serrano voted against H.R. 4038 - American SAFE Act of 2015, a bill introduced by Republican’s to obstruct the President’s efforts to assist Syrian refugees.

One of the greatest things our nation has done since its beginning is to welcome people from all over the world fleeing war, injustice, government corruption, hunger and other horrors. This is why it is so sad and disappointing to see Republicans in Congress turning their back on the refugees coming from Syria - people who are fleeing from the horrors of a civil war and the cruelty of ISIS. Their bill to prevent Syrian refugees from entering the U.S. does nothing to enhance our security. It only slams the door on innocent people, including mothers and children fleeing violence. Our nation is better than that; compassion must prevail over fear. As fight terrorism, we must continue to honor our values. America can both welcome refugees and ensure our nation’s security. “

Congressman Serrano Honored with the National Hispanic Media Coalition Award

Last week, Congressman Serrano received the National Hispanic Media Coalition Impact Award for Outstanding Public Service. The National Hispanic Media Coalition  (NHMC) presented him with the award  in recognition of his efforts to close the digital divide and enact policies that protect Latinos and other people of color. The Congressman’s work supporting Net Neutrality, against hate speech, and improving the communication capabilities of the U.S. territories were highlighted during the award presentation. Other honorees included Sen. Cory Booker, Congresswoman Anna Eshoo and Congresswoman Doris Matsui.

“I am truly honored and humbled to be presented by the NHMC Impact Award for Outstanding Public Service. I have always believed that one of the best ways to protect our democracy is to ensure that citizens- no matter their race or nationality- are able to receive news and access technology. Organizations like the NHMC help make sure that minorities have access to communications and technology, and are fairly portrayed in the media. I will keep on working to make sure that the issues we all care about receive the attention they deserve,” said Congressman José E. Serrano.

NHMC Award
Congressman Serrano receiving the Award from National Hispanic Media Coalition President Alex Nogales.


In the Bronx

Congressman Serrano Announces Randall’s Island Connector

On Friday November 17th, Congressman Serrano joined Mayor Bill de Blasio, the New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC), City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, Council Member Maria del Carmen Arroyo and Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. in announcing the opening of the Randall’s Island Connector, a pathway that connects the South Bronx and Randall’s Island, providing a critical transportation link for pedestrians and bicyclists, and increased accessibility and opportunities for the people of the Bronx.

“This is great news for our community, which has been working together to improve access to quality green spaces for many years,” said Congressman José E. Serrano. “The Randall’s Island Connector will open up a whole new world of opportunities and green space for Bronxites to enjoy by making more accessible an area that has been effectively shut to us for decades. As someone who grew up seeing Randall’s Island as a needlessly difficult destination for Bronxites, and someone who has worked for years to secure federal funding for this project as a member of the House Appropriations Committee, it is incredibly gratifying to see this project finally become a reality. Our healthier lifestyles begin with access to quality outdoor space, and the Randall’s Island Connector is an important step.”

Highbridge Photo

Congressman Serrano, New York City Congressional Delegation Discuss Federal Issues With Mayor DeBlasio

Two weeks ago, Congressman Serrano and the other members of the New York City Congressional Delegation met with Mayor Bill DeBlasio at City Hall to discuss pertinent federal issues such as the Zadroga bill, NYCHA, the Puerto Rico fiscal crisis, and transportation. The delegation and Mayor DeBlasio are urged Congress not to pass a long-term transportation bill that would hurt transit in New York City. They also urged Congress to renew the Zadroga bill for all the workers, victims and families who were affected by the 9/11 terrorist attacks and called attention to Puerto Rico’s fiscal and health crisis.

Press Conference DeBlasio