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Vote unlikely on sex abuse bill Catholic Church opposes

As the state Assembly wrapped up its regular session Tuesday, it appeared unlikely that controversial child sex abuse bill would be voted on, advocates and officials said.

The bill, sponsored by Assemb. Margaret Markey (D- Maspeth) and opposed by the Catholic Church, would drop the statute of limitations on child sex abuse cases for victims 53 years and younger. Previously her bill included no age limit.

She also recently amended it to explicitly include public as well as private institutions.

Assemb. Vito Lopez (D-Brooklyn), who is sponsoring a competing bill that does not lift the statute of limitations, said he did not expect either bill to pass the legislature this session, or even this year. "The likelihood of a law occurring this year is highly unlikely," he said.

Lonnie Soury, a spokesman for Survivors for Justice, a group that supports Markey's bill, also said it didn't appear the legislation would be taken up last night. But "we are exceedingly confident that in the special session" that could be called in Albany later this year "this important legislation to protect children will be passed" in both houses, Soury said.

Adding to the uncertainty, Markey was not in Albany Monday. Her office did not say why.

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