Albany pushes for fair share in state budget

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The City of Albany’s Common Council voted Thursday to ask for permanent state aid from Governor Andrew Cuomo.

The city has asked New York State for decades to add an additional $12.5 million to its annual budget. But with a $2.3 billion shortfall in the state’s 2019 budget, there’s a chance those additional funds won’t come through.

Mayor Kathy Sheehan said without those funds, the impact could deeply impact the day-to-day of every Albany resident.

“We are really talking about closing our parks, our recreation department. This is something that would result in our city not even resembling what it resembles now,” Sheehan said.

Mayor Sheehan is calling out the inequity Albany gets compared to other cities across New York. The mayor even comparing the city of Utica, which has about half the population of Albany, but receives double the amount of aid.

“In order for us to really be able to operate government efficiently, we need a long-term commitment versus this year-to-year request,” said Ward 5 Alderman Richard Conti.

Last year the governor gave the city $12 million, but has not announced plans to give the city any money this year.

Mayor Sheehan said that even with costs rising for the city it’s been able to work with the same amount of state aid.

The governor is due to sign the budget April 1.

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