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Newly sworn-in state assembyman ready to dig in

Photo from NYS Assemlby Website

When the roll is called in the New York State Assembly, there is a new Republican name on the list -- former East Aurora Mayor and small businessman David DiPietro. The former mayor gets his first inside view of the ceremonies of state government Wednesday afternoon when he attends Governor Andrew Cuomo's State of the State Address

The Republican Assemblyman is wearing a "bulldog" tag in his button hole, given out Tuesday by Republican leader Brian Kolb.

DiPietro tells WBFO News there may be only 44 Republicans out of the 150 members of the Assembly, but ideas are coming out of that bulldog group and are being passed into law.

"All the major legislation that's passed in the last two-and-a-half to three years has been driven from this little minority Assembly which is pretty cool. From the tax cap to a number of issues, it's driven from here and then obviously the ideas have been good enough that it's morphed into law and some reform," said DiPietro.

DiPietro said his first legislative priority is a bill to require drug testing of people on welfare.

Mike Desmond is one of Western New York’s most experienced reporters, having spent nearly a half-century covering the region for newspapers, television stations and public radio. He has been with WBFO and its predecessor, WNED-AM, since 1988. As a reporter for WBFO, he has covered literally thousands of stories involving education, science, business, the environment and many other issues. Mike has been a long-time theater reviewer for a variety of publications and was formerly a part-time reporter for The New York Times.