What I Do
I work for you full-time, year-round, in the State Capitol in Albany and in the neighborhood. I am a lawyer, but I do not maintain a private practice. I don’t work as a consultant or run a business on the side. My full attention and loyalty—in Albany and in the community—belongs to public service and not to any other job or interest.
I am the chair of the Assembly’s Committee on Health, which is responsible for creating and updating the State’s public health laws. My role is to set the agenda for the Committee, and to shepherd the legislation we pass through the Assembly. I am also the Assembly’s leader when we negotiate the health budget with the Senate and the governor each year.
As your Assembly Member, I know that my job is not just in Albany. One of my most important jobs is helping solve problems for people in our community. My Community Office is open year-round, helping thousands of our neighbors. I have found that many people are not aware of how their State Assembly Member can work for them and the community.
Much of the work done by my staff and me is helping people with problems with their landlord, Con Ed, phone or cable services, or a government agency such as Medicare (especially Part D), Social Security, NYCHA, or the City or State tax agencies.
We help people apply for EPIC, Medicaid, the earned-income tax credit, food stamps, and other important benefits.
We also work with block associations and other community groups that need help with Federal, State or City government, including issues such as zoning, development, traffic, police protection, rowdy bars, sanitation, schools, and landmark preservation.
Typical housing problems include rent overcharges, lack of services or repairs, and co-op or condo conversions. We organize tenant associations, help fill out forms (e.g., Senior Citizen Rent Increase Exemptions (SCRIE) or Disability Rent Increase Exemption (DRIE)) and explain tenant rights. On occasion, we’ve gone to Housing Court with tenants. If you need a free or low-cost tenant lawyer, we can help you find one.
The Community Office is at 242 West 27th Street, between Seventh and Eighth Aves., across from FIT in an easily accessible storefront; telephone: 212-807-7900. The staff includes Nancy Alexander, Marty Algaze, Gaby Dann-Allel, Maria Guzman, and Wendi Paster. Maria speaks Spanish fluently. It is open for appointments Monday through Thursday, 10 A.M. – 6 P.M. Appointments are requested. You can also e-mail us at GottfriedR@assembly.state.ny.us