For Immediate Release: April 1, 2019
Contact: Peter Giunta, 347.621.8031
The following is a statement from Assemblymember Michael Reilly regarding the passage of the State Budget for Fiscal Year 2019 to Fiscal Year 2020:
“Being that the State Budget is due by April 1st, one might mistake it as a cruel April Fool’s Day joke. The truth is though, this is just typical Albany. We now have definitive proof that this state, under it’s current leadership, no longer stands for the interests and values of the hard working middle class families or small businesses who call it home. As a matter of fact, this budget benefits everyone except the middle class, including illegal immigrants and even rewards unlawfulness.
This $175 billion budget offers absolutely no property tax relief for New York City homeowners, introduces several new taxes including a plastic bag tax, an internet sales tax, and a commuter tax (congestion pricing), among several others that were sneakingly introduced last minute. The economic burden that this state has placed on everyday New Yorkers is ridiculous, but it finally makes clear why many of these people are fleeing the state.
To add insult to injury, Governor Cuomo and the legislature’s Democrat Majority offered almost no reform on issues pertaining to Mayoral Control of New York City Public Schools and the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, just to name a few. I, along with many of my Republican colleagues have proposed serious reforms over the past several months that, if enacted, would have a positive impact. I for one have been passionate about reforming Mayoral Control for approximately the last decade, which is why I was so disheartened to see an extension granted that lacked a single reform to increase parental involvement and ensure accountability and transparency of the city’s Panel for Educational Policy.
And while I would love nothing more than to cherry-pick this budget, there isn’t much of anything good to report. School aid has increased by a record setting $960 million, direct-care workers may be eligible for an additional 2% raise next year, and we were successful in securing $4.1 million in funding for the Dwyer Peer-to-Peer Veteran Counseling Program with an extra $300,000 in new funding for New York City veterans. This is all just a drop in the bucket though, and with this being my first state budget completed, I can honestly tell you that the out of control tax and spend culture of Albany must come to an end, otherwise we are going to continue pushing out the people who keep this state afloat.”