The legislature left Albany last week with some unfinished business. They did not agree on Governor Cuomo’s Women’s Equality Act, and Cuomo says at least one house should return to pass some of the bill’s provisions.
Deals have been reached between Governor Cuomo and legislative leaders on siting new casinos and creating tax free zones at college campuses. But a bill on abortion rights was struggling, and reform measures appear dead for the session.
With just over a week left in the legislative session, Governor Cuomo released his bill to extend public financing of political campaigns to statewide races. But he still faces resistance from some factions in the legislature.
Governor Cuomo has been traveling the state, promoting his plan to create tax free business zones at college campuses. He’s also running ads, paid for by the State Democratic Party. Now, one of the state’s largest unions is countering that effort with its own message.
The steady drum beat of scandal after scandal in the New York State legislature has led many to wonder whether lawmakers can focus on passing any major bills by the end of the session, which is fast approaching. The legislature returns Wednesday and has just four work weeks to act on items ranging from campaign finance reform to abortion rights to economic development plans.
Lawmakers in Albany tried to carry on business in the wake of one of the worst scandals in recent decades that has overshadowed most other news coming out of the Capitol. Much of this week’s legislative session has been canceled, but politicians who were in town insisted that their agendas are not being derailed.
Governor Cuomo defended his administration against criticisms that he has not been transparent enough, saying he’s trying to do more.
Governor Cuomo defended his record of releasing documents and other information to the public, saying his administration has taken “unprecedented steps” and has gone to “exorbitant” levels to communicate. Cuomo was the target of newspaper editorial recently that criticized him for being secretive and controlling in his handling of archive files during his time as Attorney General, among other things.
Governor Cuomo cast further doubt on issues like campaign finance reform and increasing the state's minimum wage to become law this year and says he’s “shifting” to a new phase of governing instead .
In remarks to his cabinet, Cuomo says he expects a “relatively quiet” end to the legislative session. He says campaign finance reform, including public campaign financing, are measures that he supports, but says that they are “controversial” and “polarizing” issues in the legislature.
Governor Andrew Cuomo for the first time addressed speculation that he might be a candidate for President in 2016, saying it’s “flattering”, but “distracting”.
Governor Cuomo, speaking for the first time about speculation that he might want to seek the presidency in 2016, says he finds the talk “flattering”, but he says overtly political talk can be “distracting” when he’s trying to govern and get along with both parties in the legislature.
“All I’m working is being the best governor I can be, “ said Cuomo.
The New York Senate and Assembly were poised to vote on new district lines, as Governor Cuomo and legislative leaders announced agreement on a number of other unrelated issues, including expansion of the state’s DNA data base, pension reform, and an amendment to allow more gambling in New York.
After months of hearings, debate, and closely guarded private negotiations, the state Senate and Assembly task force on restricting, known as LATFOR, finally moved to adopt new district lines and send them to floor for a vote.
With millions of dollars of competitive economic development dollars on the line, the Western New York Regional Economic Development Council has approved a five-year strategic plan it will submit to Albany next week.