Herkimer County, NY (WIBX) - Two local non-profits are getting some good news from lawmakers in Albany. A bill constructed to boost support for domestic violence programs cleared the Senate and Assembly. Senator James L. Seward, one of the backers of the bill, says it sets aside funding for violence intervention programs. "The U.S. Surgeon General has identified domestic violence as the number one health problem affecting American women. Providing help to vulnerable individuals, who often have nowhere else to turn, is essential," said Seward in a released statement.

The programs targeted for funding in the 2012-2013 state budget are:

  • YWCA of Cortland - $10,000
  • Catholic Charities of Herkimer County - $10,000
  • Opportunities for Otsego - $10,000
  • Catholic Charities of Schoharie County - $10,000
  • Chenango County Catholic Charities - $5,000
  • Advocacy Center of Tompkins County - $5,000

Along with the funding, Seward says the bill also calls for tougher punishments for those who violate domestic violence laws. "This comprehensive legislation targeting domestic violence is a major development--it creates harsh penalties suitable for abusers and provides law enforcement and prosecutors with the tools they need to put dangerous criminal behind bars," Seward said. The bill is expected to clear final approval from Governor Andrew Cuomo.