The Hamptons – A Place of Last Resort

The Hamptons – A Place of Last Resort

Traffic doesn’t move too quickly on a large number of Long Island roads. Anywhere you drive, north, south, east or west you are bound to run into massive gridlock. Close to the top of the worst traffic nightmares is getting in and out of the Hamptons, all year round.

On any given day travelers in the Hamptons will be stuck in a long line of pickup trucks filled with construction workers. Add into that mix the growing number of year round residents and the day trippers anxious to see where the rich and famous are living. And if you happen to be driving out east during the apple and pumpkin picking season, allow lots of extra time to get to your destination.

It would be unfair to point the finger at the East End’s current elected officials because the gridlock is directly connected to fifty plus years of poor planning and the lack of any fresh ideas being introduced into the current debate about how to manage the massive growth that the area has experienced.

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The Family Doctor is An Endangered Species

The Family Doctor is An Endangered Species

Lately I’ve seen many stories about different species that are threatened with extinction. Elephants are being killed by poachers, and buffalo are rarely seen unless you’re touring some remote area of North Dakota. To that ever-growing list you can add the family doctor.

In case you haven’t noticed, the doctor who was once minutes away when your child had a high fever is now at some local hospital, where he’s a member of the professional staff. Between government restrictions and skyrocketing insurance costs, one by one, doctors are either leaving their practices or seeking the shelter of large institutions.

Trapped in the cycle of cuts in patient reimbursement and the need to see multiple patients in one day, the family physician is slowly disappearing. All over this region we see a new form of medical care, in the form of the walk-in doctor’s office. There is no doubt that the doctors working there are competent, but the idea of bonding with a walk-in doctor is a fantasy.

By now, most of us have seen an enormous spike in health insurance costs. Some of that increase goes to providing care for more patients under the Affordable Care Act, but a good chunk of it goes to the insurance companies, which figure you’re trapped and can’t go elsewhere. Once upon a time, a policyholder paid a modest co-pay. Currently the out-of-pocket grows bigger with each new policy, and is out of reach to a lot of families with urgent medical needs.

Another example of the decline in hands-on medicine is when you’re a hospital patient. I had the misfortune of being one in the past few weeks, and it was an eye-opener. Your physician does visit you to discuss your case, and that promise is kept. But once upon a time you would see doctors in training. They were the team of people who would wake you up early in the morning to discuss your case and report to your doctor.

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Arthur “Jerry” Kremer in the Albany Times Union Post-Election Analysis

Arthur “Jerry” Kremer in the Albany Times Union Post-Election Analysis

Empire Chairman Arthur “Jerry” Kremer spoke with the Albany Times Union after last week’s midterm elections regarding the various campaigns run by political parties in the state and why certain issues resonated with voters.

Albany

What went right for Republicans and wrong for Democrats in the battle for the state Senate?

Tuesday’s election results dashed the hopes Democrats had of controlling the chamber when lawmakers return to Albany in January, despite a more than 3-to-2 state enrollment advantage over Republicans.

With almost all the results in, Republicans have a bare 32-seat majority, plus the loyalty of Simcha Felder, a Democrat who has caucused with them since winning office in 2012.

Political leaders and strategists on Wednesday morning tried to explain why the Democrats, despite their numeric advantage as well as a promise of help from Gov. Andrew Cuomo, fell short yet again.”

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Arthur “Jerry” Kremer in The Albany Times Union on Governor Cuomo’s Upcoming Trips Overseas

Arthur “Jerry” Kremer in The Albany Times Union on Governor Cuomo’s Upcoming Trips Overseas

It’s unclear if Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s plans to travel to Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic in the near future will involve any other elected officials.

Like jaunts to Ireland, Italy and Israel, a trip to the islands could be viewed as a standard stop for any New York governor keen to reach out to significant ethic groups.

Cuomo on Monday stressed that he hasn’t finalized details of the upcoming trip. “I’d like to visit before Election Day just as a sign of respect to those communities,” he said.

Also not yet finalized: Whether he’ll be accompanied by members of the state Senate’s Democratic conference with Puerto Rican or Dominican roots.

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Arthur “Jerry” Kremer moderates Nuclear Energy Panel

Arthur “Jerry” Kremer moderates Nuclear Energy Panel

Last month, Arthur “Jerry” Kremer moderated a panel on the value of nuclear power to New York and to the country. Former Senators Evan Bayh (D-IL) and Judd Gregg (R-NH) participated along with former EPA Administrator Carol M. Browner.

Click here for video highlights of the event