June 21, 2017

Statement from Speaker Carl Heastie

Last month, the Assembly Majority passed a bill that honored requests for the extension of local revenue actions and certain policy objectives. We respect our local governments because they know how to best serve their communities. As such, unlike the Senate, we did not require or request any policy changes in exchange for these extensions. These actions would have ensured billions of dollars for our local communities to provide the vital services we all depend on and would have provided certainty in school governance for millions of students in New York City.

It is unconscionable that the Senate departed, leaving our local governments with so much uncertainty. Whether it is a fiscal decision to extend a local tax or allowing localities to make decisions about their own school districts, we have always put the needs of our constituents at home ahead of political interests in Albany.

The Assembly acted responsibly by extending mayoral control for New York City schools as well providing the certainty that our local governments so desperately need in order to function properly. Unfortunately, the Senate Republicans did not.

Our school children, families, and local officials deserve better. Our State government deserves better. It is well past time for the Senate to pass the Assembly's bill with no extra policy considerations. It is the right thing to do.