Mayor Bill de Blasio traveled to Albany yesterday in a last-minute effort to galvanize the legislature and the governor to act on 421a and rent regulation issues — but told reporters that he saw few encouraging signs of progress.
“We need action from the other two bodies,” de Blasio said. “In particular, we need the governor to act. We need leadership and we know the governor has been able in the past to make real change here in Albany and get big things done. This is a moment when we need that leadership.”
The mayor said that he walked away from Albany with “no commitments,” according to Capital New York.
“‘And, obviously, there are some talking about the possibility of not addressing these issues which I think would have horrible consequences. I think if there isn’t action on mayoral control of education, if there isn’t action on rent regulation, if there isn’t action on 421-a, people all over the city, all over the state will look at Albany and once again conclude, Albany is not interested in serving the needs of the people,” he said. “It would be an irresponsible act. I think this is a chance for Albany to take a step in the right direction, make some common sense moves that would actually help people’s lives and restore a sense of faith in what happens here,”
In response, a spokesperson from Governor Andrew Cuomo’s administration said that the de Blasio is being unreasonable.
“Don’t get me wrong, it was nice he showed up,” the administration official said. “But to appear in the Capitol a few days before the end of session with controversial and untested ideas that are opposed by significant groups such as the AFL-CIO is not how leaders get things done,” the spokesperson said.
De Blasio has called for an end to 421a abatements for condos and proposed that projects receiving the benefit should be required to include affordable units within the specific building.
Construction labor unions oppose de Blasio’s proposal because it only includes a prevailing wage requirement for service workers, while service worker unions support the mayor’s plan. [Capital NY] — Tess Hofmann