It's been a busy three years for Governor Andrew Cuomo. As if passing two on time budgets wasn't hard enough to get the state to do, it looks like the Governor is going to have a lot on his plate when it comes to his State of the State next week. Capital Tonight's Nick Reisman has more.
ALBANY, N.Y. -- With his State of the State due to be delivered next Wednesday, Governor Andrew Cuomo is expected to tackle issues ranging from an increase to the state's minimum wage to a push to expand campaign disclosure laws. But the governor says he plans to deal with more near-term concerns stemming from Hurricane Sandy and the spate of mass shootings.
“This state has tremendous needs that are being presented at this time. The issue of gun violence, the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. These are just issues of the day that have been presented to you that government needs to respond to,” Cuomo said.
In the speech, Cuomo will propose changes to how the state prepares for and responds to disasters like storms Sandy, Lee and Irene. Cuomo on Thursday met with two commissions he created to develop new plans for disasters. Among them: A unified training program for first responders, the stockpiling of equipment and a strategic fuel reserve to cope with gasoline shortages. The proposals come with an undetermined price tag.
Cuomo said, “We haven't done any financial analysis, but it's going to be very, very expensive.”
Another plan in the works would be to require backup generators at gasoline stations in order to prevent the lengthy fuel lines that hampered the recovery in the aftermath of Sandy.
“I understand the impact on asking the private sector to have this capacity, but I also understand the necessity of it. So we'll weigh that and we'll have a specific proposal in the State of the State,” Cuomo said
Cuomo is still not satisfied with House Republicans in Washington who declined to hold a vote on a $60.4 billion storm aid package for New York and New Jersey. Withering criticism forced House Speaker John Boehner to change his mind and hold a vote on January 15.
“I'm at the point where it's simple for me. Show me the money because I've heard a lot of things and until I see the cash, I'm going to reserve judgment,” Cuomo said.
Cuomo's speech on Wednesday will be his third State of the State since taking office.