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Borrello and Giglio react to Governor Hochul’s 2024 state budget

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Borrello blasts 2.4 billion for migrants, Giglio not happy about prison closures

STATEMENT BY SENATOR GEORGE BORRELLO ON THE EXECUTIVE BUDGET

“While we will be delving into the details of Governor Hochul’s $233 billion spending plan in the coming days, my first reaction is that it’s a missed opportunity to tackle New York’s biggest problems and put us on a stronger course for the future.

There is nothing in here that will slow or stop New York’s worst-in-the-nation outmigration of residents, such as income or property tax cuts. There is an alarming proposal to close five prisons, which will exacerbate the crime crisis. There is a threat of our rural schools losing crucial aid. And there is a proposal to plant thousands of trees at taxpayer expense even as thousands of mature trees are cut down as part of the state’s green energy boondoggle.    

Most concerning is the allocation of $2.4 billion in funding for Democrat’s self-created migrant crisis, which has already consumed $2 billion in taxpayer funds over the past year. Governor Hochul’s budget remarks cast our state as an innocent victim in this catastrophe. Nothing could be further from the truth. The sanctuary policies put in place by Democrats are the defacto ‘welcome mat’ that has encouraged this influx. Allowing these policies to stay in place and expecting hardworking New York taxpayers to simply pay the bill is shameful and another reason for people to leave.  

New York State is at a crossroads. If we are to reverse New York’s downward spiral, we need a major change in priorities. As this process moves forward, my colleagues and I will be advocating for our rural and suburban communities and advancing proposals to put our state back on the right track.”

Assemblyman Giglio: Hochul Budget Over-the-Top and Irresponsible

Criticized Plan to Close Up To Five Correctional Facilities

ALBANY – Assemblyman Joseph M. Giglio (R,C-Gowanda) criticized Gov. Kathy Hochul’s $233 billion budget proposal as irresponsible.

“For months the governor has been telling us New York has to live within its means. I was hoping for a fiscally responsible budget proposal from her. Instead she presented us with another over-the-top spending plan that increases spending and will make New York less safe and less affordable. It’s irresponsible and bad for New York’s taxpayers,” Assemblyman Giglio said.

Giglio questioned the governor’s revenue projections. As early as this fall, State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli was projecting a $4 billion-plus state budget deficit.

“So she’s trying to tell us that New York went from having a $4 billion deficit a few months ago to suddenly having a $2.2 billion surplus?” Giglio said. “It’s ridiculous and it flies in the face of reality. It’s budgeting by wishful thinking.”

As Ranking Member of the Assembly Committee on Corrections, Assemblyman Giglio also took issue with Gov. Hochul’s asking for fast-track authority to close up to five prisons with only 90-day notice as part of her budget.

A state law adopted in 2005 requires the governor and Department of Corrections to undertake a year-long procedure to close a prison, unless there is a fiscal emergency. Former Gov. Cuomo sought and used similar fast-track authority.

Three days before Christmas in 2020, Gov. Cuomo announced the closure of three upstate correctional facilities with the loss of more than 1,000 correctional officer jobs.

“It’s no surprise Gov. Hochul wants the same power now,” Giglio said. “She’s doing exactly what the former governor did and like him, she’s doing it to circumvent the 2005 law so she can cut correction officer jobs quickly despite there not being a fiscal emergency.

“These closures devastate communities. But they don’t care about that. They don’t care about the men and women who work in these facilities who suddenly have three months to find new jobs. They don’t care about the children, who suddenly have to leave their schools and move across the state. And they certainly don’t care about the local communities, schools and businesses hurt by these closures. Why would they?

“Prisons are located in upstate, rural communities, places that don’t vote for Gov. Hochul and her allies in the legislature.”

In 2005, during Gov. Pataki’s administration, New York State adopted a law requiring the state to give communities at least one year’s notice before a prison closure. The law was designed to give correction officers, their families and host communities time to prepare for the closure. Because correctional facilities are often located in rural communities, they are often the largest employer within those communities.

“But Gov. Cuomo ignored the law and now Gov. Hochul plans to ignore the law because they only agree with laws they find convenient,” Giglio said.

Assemblyman Giglio said the governor also completely ignored Western New York in her budget address.

“She didn’t say one word about completing Route 219 which would benefit Buffalo. She didn’t mention the gaming compact with the Seneca Nation, which would benefit all of Western New York. There was nothing in her budget announcement for Western New York,” Giglio said. “I’m very disappointed and frustrated by her lack of concern for upstate and rural communities. She talks a good game about her roots and her home town, but it’s downstate that gets her attention.”

Assemblyman Joseph Giglio represents the 148th District, which consists of all of Cattaraugus and Allegany counties and portions of Steuben County as well. For more information, visit Assemblyman Giglio’s Official Website.

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