Bail reform continues to be divisive issue for state legislators
Legislators in New York are renewing their debate over bail reform.
In Gov. Kathy Hochul's State of the State address, the governor called for changes in bail reform.
"The bail reform law as written leaves room for improvement," Hochul said in her address.
Licensed social worker Amanda Acevedo hopes the reforms aren't rolled back. She works with women who are unable to meet even small amounts of bail.
"In most cases, their outside world is falling apart," Acevedo says. "Many of our women are mothers and as such, they are the primary providers for their households. So, we're seeing women miss out on time with their children, not being able to provide financially, sometimes leading to homelessness."
Republicans, however, say a rise in crime rates means there should be a rollback on the reforms.
"Repeal and replace," says Anthony Palumbo, a former Suffolk County prosecutor and a Republican state senator representing eastern Suffolk. "Start it from scratch would be the best idea in my opinion regarding bail reform."
The bail reform laws were passed in 2019 when Democrats took control of the state senate to go along with majority they've held in the assembly.
The bail reform issue puts Hochul at odds with a big block of her own party.
Hochul narrowly defeated Republican Lee Zeldin, whose campaign focused heavily on crime.