Cuomo downplays tensions with de Blasio over 421a

Jabs are part of a “healthy debate,” says the governor

TRD New York /
Jun.June 02, 2015 01:45 PM

Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Mayor Bill de Blasio’s public sparring over 421a issues in the past week is just part of a “healthy debate,” Cuomo said in a radio interview Monday.

“Our personal relationship is not an issue,” Cuomo said in response to prodding by host Susan Arbetter, according to Capital New York. “Bill and I are going to be friends after these jobs are over. That is not to say that I am not going to fight like a Trojan for what I believe.”

As the June 15 deadline for the 421a tax abatement expiration draws near, de Blasio and Cuomo have been vocal about their differences on the issue, though Cuomo has not presented a specific alternative to de Blasio’s plan. On the radio program, he continued to evade the question of specifics.

“There is a negotiation to take place. I believe you can get more affordable housing units. I believe the developers can still make money and the workers can get paid a fair wage,” he said. “We have differences on what we believe about the plan, but not the goal.”

The mayor has said he is surprised by Cuomo’s inaction on the issue so far and called for leadership in Albany, while the governor made a surprise attack on de Blasio by accusing his plan of being a giveaway to developers and unfair to labor unions. Earlier this week, de Blasio called that response “disingenuous.” While de Blasio’s plan would grant a prevailing wage to service workers in 421a buildings, it would leave out construction workers. [Capital NY] — Tess Hofmann

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