ALBANY, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — New York is facing a multi-billion dollar budget gap, but Gov. Andrew Cuomo says that the year ahead is all about making progress happen.
New York City and local governments may disagree with his concept of progress, CBS2’s Marcia Kramer reported Wednesday.
Banners lining the hall of the Empire State Plaza Convention Center laud Cuomo’s past achievements, but he said he’s determined to push the state forward despite a crushing $6 billion budget gap.
He wants to cut taxes for the middle class and small businesses, but others could end up getting hurt.
Local governments, local property taxpayers and the Big Apple.
“We have restructured Medicaid before and we’re going to have to do it again this year,” Cuomo said during his State of the State address.
WATCH: Gov. Cuomo Delivers State Of The State, Plus Analysis By CBS2 Urban Affairs Expert Mark Peters:
The governor made clear that one way to close his budget gap is to cut Medicaid payments to localities.
For example, Westchester County gets $175 million and New York City gets $2 billion. Needless to say, Mayor Bill de Blasio did not applaud.
Dutchess County Executive Mark Molinaro said if Cuomo gets his way local property taxes will skyrocket.
“What the governor outlined is a direct attack on property taxpayers across the state of New York,” Molinaro said.
“Local officials all over the state, whether they run the biggest city in the country or they run some of the smaller counties upstate, are shaking in their boots,” added Larry Levy, the executive dean of Hofstra University’s National Center for Suburban Studies.
The governor did offer some goodies, including a middle class tax cut worth $1.8 billion for those earning less than $300,000, small business tax cuts, paid sick leave, and protections for gig workers.
Cuomo also wants to ban sexual predators from New York City subways, legalize marijuana, legalize e-bikes, and enact a $3 million bond issue to combat climate change.
The governor was most passionate about hate crimes, specifically the recent synagogue stabbings in Rockland County.
“When they attacked Orthodox Jewish people on the seventh night of Chanukah in Monsey, in Rockland, in the home of Rabbi Rottenberg, they attacked me and they attacked you and when you try to divide the great state of New York we will stand up tall. We will fight and we will win because we are right, and that is the New York way,” Cuomo said.,” Cuomo said.
The governor did not mention bail reform, which to many is more urgent than solving the budget crisis.