Wednesday, January 16, 2019



Area state lawmakers react to governor’s message and budget

ALBANY – For the most part, Democrats were supportive of fellow Democratic Governor Cuomo’s agenda in the 2019-20 fiscal year as he outlined them on Tuesday. Republicans, who are now the minority party in both the Senate and Assembly, are critical of the governor’s plans.

Assemblyman Kevin Cahill (D, Kingston) said he supports “a progressive vision for New York.”

Senator James Skoufis (D, Woodbury) said while he supports much of Cuomo’s agenda, he is not going to be a rubber stamp to all of it.

“I think there is actually a tremendous amount of political will this year despite the Democrats being in control of the Assembly and the State Senate,” Skoufis said. “There is a tremendous amount of political will this year to better exert ourselves as a co-equal branch of government.”

Republican Assemblyman Karl Brabenec (R, Deerpark) said the governor has embraced “a radical vision that includes more nanny-state control” that the lawmaker opposes.

“All the progressive proposals that he is talking about are way off base, not necessary,” Brabenec said. “It restricts people and doesn’t give them the freedoms that they need or want and that’s not the way New York should be structured.”

Assemblyman Colin Schmitt (R, New Windsor) said he has already spoken with colleagues on both sides of the aisle in both houses “to ensure we fight to deliver bipartisan wins in the budget for our region and that we get our fair share of funding.”

Republican Assemblyman Kevin Byrne (R, Mahopac) said while he supports making the two percent tax cap permanent, "without real mandate relief (it) falls short of what we need for lasting property tax relief.”

Senator Susan Serino (R, Hyde Park) said with the Democrats in control of state government, “it is clear that each branch of government is running unchecked in a race to pass the most extreme legislation.”

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