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NY Dems ignore Eric Adams’ request for extra $1B in NYC migrant funds

Albany Democrats are ignoring Mayor Eric Adams’ demands for an extra $1 billion in state funding to help with New York City’s migrant crisis.

Gov. Kathy Hochul had allotted in her budget proposal $2.4 billion for the city to deal with the crisis — a number that remained unchanged in the responses to her spending plan released late Monday by the state legislature.

Both the state Senate and Assembly turned a deaf ear to the sudden demand by City Hall last month for another another billion dollars — but Adams shrugged the diss off when asked about it on Tuesday.

Gov. Kathy Hochul’s proposal to add another $2.4 billion to support the migrant crisis is supported by both houses of the state legislature. Andrew Schwartz / SplashNews.com
Gov. Kathy Hochul’s proposal to add another $2.4 billion to support the migrant crisis is supported by both houses of the state legislature. Andrew Schwartz / SplashNews.com

“Albany is going to do what Albany is supposed to do,” the mayor told reporters, playing down the legislature’s spending proposals, which are a largely symbolic part of the state budget process.

The budget proposals from the state Senate and Assembly set the parameters for formal negotiations between legislative leaders and the governor as they seek to hammer out a deal before the fiscal year lapses on April 1.

Hochul and Adams played down any hint of a rift Tuesday, appearing together at an unrelated press conference announcing a crackdown on fake and altered license plates.

A spokesperson for the governor hailed the appearance as showing a “united front” — just a week after Adams was noticeably absent from Hochul announcing she was flooding the subways with hundreds of National Guard troops as part of a controversial crime-fighting plan.

“I’ll be with the mayor today. We continue to talk all the time. It’s a very close relationship when it comes to teaming up and dealing with the specter of crime in our cities, but also progress has been made,” Hochul told reporters Tuesday.

Lawmakers did signal some potential wins on the horizon for Hizzoner, including in their budget proposals initiatives to combat illegal pot shops and retail thefts that the mayor has backed.

State senators are floating language that would clarify and expand the ability of local law enforcement to shut down thousands of shops selling weed without a license.

“Albany is going to do what Albany is supposed to do,” Mayor Eric Adams said of the state budget process Tuesday. G.N.Miller/NYPost
“Albany is going to do what Albany is supposed to do,” Mayor Eric Adams said of the state budget process Tuesday. G.N.Miller/NYPost

“We believe that, with our coordination with the district attorneys, that that will improve their ability to go after these stores,” Senate Finance Chair Liz Krueger said. “There’s also several recommendations from Mayor Eric Adams that we have also accepted.”

Lawmakers and the governor also appear poised to act on provisions to crack down on a wave of retail theft, though with differing plans to do so in their budget proposals.

The state Senate rejected Hochul’s bid for increased legal penalties for those convicted of assaulting store clerks.

Adams has also called for increased penalties for assaulting retail workers.

Lawmakers and Hochul have to hammer out details, but the sides are generally supportive of measures giving local authorities more abilities to crack down on illegal pot shops. Council Member Robert Holden
Lawmakers and Hochul have to hammer out details, but the sides are generally supportive of measures giving local authorities more abilities to crack down on illegal pot shops. Council Member Robert Holden

The sides agreed, in part, to additional funding for law enforcement resources and a task force to crack down on organized retail theft rings.

One of the larger blows to Adams came with a flat out rejection by both houses of a proposal to extend his control over New York City schools, which expires at the end of June.

Adams was pleased to see Hochul include his ask for four years of mayor control in her spending plan, though Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart Cousins and other lawmakers seem firmly opposed to including it in the budget if at all.

State Sen. Liz Krueger said the state Senate’s budget language on combatting illegal pot shops includes aspects supported by Adams. Council Member Robert Holden
State Sen. Liz Krueger said the state Senate’s budget language on combatting illegal pot shops includes aspects supported by Adams. Council Member Robert Holden

“This is not different from the last time mayoral control came up,” Stewart Cousins told reporters Tuesday. “We did not do it in the budget because again, this is something that can be done outside of the budget.”

Over the next few weeks lawmakers and the governor will need to hash out other major areas of disagreement including pushes by the governor to implement major changes to the way schools are funded and to strike a bargain on a package of legislation to increase housing supply.