“This is a pivotal moment for our state,” Hochul said. “You can’t just sit back and wish things were different. If you want to make real progress for the people, you can.”
She outlined a series of proposals aimed at achieving the New York dream loosely outlined in a state address last month.and she benefits From a surplus of $8.7 billion Thanks to more than expected tax revenues to fund projects and programs to appease various constituencies.
Ho Chul wants a record Increased education When Medicaid spending — to $34.4 billion and $27.8 billion, respectively. Hochul’s plan is to set aside more than $1 billion to help New York City pay the costs of providing social services to new asylum seekers.
She raised new funding for the beleaguered Metropolitan Transportation Authority, including raising payroll taxes for downstate businesses, using proceeds from a planned casino, and securing $300 million in one-time aid. proposed the flow of She also refused to raise any income tax.
she presented various terms her plan to build 800,000 new homes Over the next decade, local governments across the state will have to meet their housing production targets or change their zoning.
And she has announced a four-year extension to complete projects covered by the lapsed 421 tax cut, but specific incentive programs that builders say are necessary for the growth of the kind of homes she seeks. did not propose any alternatives.
Many of Hochul’s ideas are conceptually widely supported among Democrats seeking to expand historically overlooked community opportunities, and Hochul will spend the next two months proposing an April 1 Attempts to build consensus among state legislators for a fiscal year beginning with .
But she started that process on difficult terms, at least in the Senate, where she threatened legal action after a Senate panel rejected her nomination as chief judge last month. downplays the potential for stalemate in tough situations. Hochul made it a point to greet just two of her people, Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins and House Speaker Carl Heastie, before taking the podium on Wednesday.
She also cracked open the door to some historically controversial debates in Congress. Allow more charter schools statewide by lifting regional restrictions in state laws and expanding the scope of discretion judges must set bail for more serious crimes.
She characterized both bail and the expansion of charter schools as a means of articulating the bizarre implementation of the current status quo rather than becoming a political grenade. Much of her campaign last year centered on rising crime and criticism of state bail laws.
“Let’s just be clear,” she said of the bail law proposal. “Let’s allow judges to consider the factors of serious offenders, and let the law stay on low-level crimes and focus on her two other public safety challenges moving forward.”
When meeting with reporters following Ho-chul’s speech, Congress Speaker Carl Heastie said he had been briefed the night before but was still “with his arms folded” at Ho-chul’s proposal.
He said charter school expansion is usually “tough” for his conference. A powerful teachers’ union opposes expansion. And he is skeptical of suggestions that state bail laws are the solution to rising crime, suggesting instead that the state legislature should take a more holistic approach.
“Don’t focus on those four letters. [B.A.I.L] And start looking at public safety as a whole,” he said.
The state is on a sound financial footing this year, and officials project they can use the $8.7 billion surplus to build reserves to 15% of the state’s operating capital by 2025.
Progressive groups analyzing Ho-Chol’s proposal say the state is aggressive, including advocates of affordable housing, who argue tenants’ rights should be prioritized to make New York more affordable. He was quick to point out what he saw as a missed opportunity when he had the cash to take action.
“Governor Ho-Chol’s plan prioritizes deregulation and the production of luxury homes. It is for real estate moguls, not working families,” tenant rights activist Cea Weaver said. said in a response from the Housing Justice for All coalition, which is represented.
When asked about the proposed expansion of the MTA payroll tax that would affect suburban counties, Hochul said the political dynamics surrounding her election and legislative ties influenced how she chose to formulate the budget. She didn’t do very well in the suburbs last November.
“What I do within my budget is not driven by politics, elections or results,” she said. “I’m guided by what’s best for New Yorkers.”