ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10)—Oneida County Executive Anthony Picente has served on the New York Power Authority board for the past 8 years, but now he’s stepping down from being a trustee.
“The decision was a long time in coming. I’ve been obviously thinking about it for a while, just given the nature of what direction I see the state going into, in particular, the governors agenda and her administration,” said Picente.
In Governor Hochul’s State of the State Address in January, she laid out her priorities to help make New York a greener state by moving away from fossil fuels to electricity.
“I’m proposing a plan to end the sale of new fossil powered heating equipment by 2030 by calling for all new construction to be zero emission starting in 2025 for small buildings and 2028 for large buildings,” Hochul announced in January.
Under the governor’s proposal, gas lines would not be allowed in new construction, which would eliminate the use of gas stoves in new homes.
In a letter sent to the governor, Picente said he’s worried about the costs of transitioning from gas to electric.
“Before those rash decisions are made—and those that are going to be that dramatic and drastic to homeowners, to businesses, to governments included—there’s got to be more discussion. There’s got to be more thought. There’s got to be more input.”
Under Hochul’s zero-emissions proposal, there could potentially be exemptions for emergency backup power and places such as commercial kitchens, laundromats, and hospitals.
Her proposals will not impact gas stoves currently used in homes or businesses and homeowners would still be able to replace their gas stoves.
“The reason gas stoves keep coming up now is because there have been some alarming studies that show gas stoves contribute to some pretty significant public health impacts and to boot— our continued reliance on fossil fuels is driving he global climate crisis and harming public health,” explained Liz Moran, NY Policy Advocate for Earth Justice.
A spokesperson for the Governor stated, “ New Yorkers can’t afford inaction on climate, and we’re prioritizing reliability and wonderful affordability, most recently by providing $400 million to help pay high electric bills and help New Yorkers make their homes more efficient.”