2024 Who’s Who in Government Relations:

Please join us in congratulating Albany veteran Michele O’Connor for her recognition by City & State in their esteemed 2024 Who’s Who in Government Relations!

Empire State Plaza Lit Orange for Parkinson’s Disease Awareness:

The State Capitol shines orange in recognition of Parkinson’s Disease Awareness Month!

As the world’s largest nonprofit funder of Parkinson’s Disease research, The Michael J. Fox Foundation is dedicated to accelerating a cure and improving therapies for the more than one million Americans living with PD.

Hodes & Landy is honored to serve as the representative of The Michael J. Fox Foundation here in New York State, emphasizing the imperative for proactive Parkinson’s policies to positively impact the 65,000 New Yorkers living with the disease.

New York Capital brief:

Legislature Advances Extender, One Budget Bill

Today, the New York State Legislature passed a budget extender and emergency appropriations measure to ensure the State can continue operations through April 4th. Though legislators will not be paid until a final budget is enacted, today’s passage ensures state employees will have timely paychecks.

Due to the Easter holiday, the NYS Legislature was aiming to come to an agreement this week to avoid a late State Budget. Despite the looming April 1 budget deadline, lawmakers have conceded that negotiations will continue into next week.

Legislative leaders in both the Assembly and Senate have characterized negotiations as faring better than years’ prior. Despite this, Senate Leader Stewart-Cousins has noted that talks are firmly “in the middle,” while Speaker Heastie told reporters this week, “I think everybody’s under the understanding that you can’t always get everything you want.”

The NYS Legislature also passed the first of ten budget bills today. The Debt Service bill is typically the first of the budget portions to be passed by both houses as it deals with outstanding state debts. The timely passage of this legislation ensures that the State’s credit rating will remain unaffected.

Budget talks will continue after the holiday and into next week. Education aid, Cost-of-Living-Adjustment for human service providers, retail worker safety, tenant protections, and tax credits for real estate developers are all expected to remain contentious issues.

New York Capitol Brief:

New York State Advances Congressional Redistricting

The process of redistricting New York State’s Congressional boundaries reached a conclusion this week, after years of court challenges and deliberations by multiple bodies. District lines that had initially been drafted by State legislators, challenged in court, redrawn by an appointed “Special Master”, challenged in court, redrawn by the bi-partisan Independent Redistricting Commission, rejected by the NYS Legislature, and redrawn by the NYS Legislature, were approved by both chambers this week.
The three-piece legislative package was swiftly delivered to Governor Hochul, who signed the bills into law effective immediately. Political observers have cautioned that the newest districts may again be challenged in court. Regardless, the petitioning period for the NYS congressional districts begins this week.

New York Capital Brief:

NYS Budget Update

On January 17, 2024 Governor Hochul released her Executive Budget Proposal. The Governor has statutory authority to release 21-day and 30-day amendments to her proposal. Though the window for 21-day amendments has passed, our team expects 30-day amendments to be released on or before February 15, 2024.

The NYS Legislature has continued the budget process by holding Joint Budget Subcommittees on each section of the Budget. Halfway through that process, the hearings have yielded testimony from government agencies and stakeholders. With the Governor’s call to keep spending flat, many of the testimonies given focused on maintaining funding, with very few agencies expecting an increase for programming this year.

Once testimony is gathered from all subcommittees, both Houses of the Legislature prepare their one-house budget proposals. We expect the one-house budget to be released sometime in early to mid-March.

NYS Legislative Retirements, Departures Announced

As the Legislative Session continues, this year’s election cycle is heating up. Candidates that would typically wait until closer to the petitioning period have been choosing to relay their intentions to run for office well in advance. This year’s petitioning period is from February 27th – April 4th.

Already this year, the NYS Legislature has seen the immediate departure of legislators such as AM Joyner, the announced impending retirements of several legislators including Sen. Breslin and AM Aubry, Cook and Dickens, and the transitioning of legislators to both the private sector and to seek other elected positions. AM Zebrowski recently announced he is stepping away from public office, while Senator Kennedy has announced his intentions to run for Congress.

Beyond the special elections needed to fill vacancies, early voting starts on June 15th. New York State’s primary election is slated for June 25, 2024.

 

 

 

New York Capitol Brief:

NY’s Predicted Budget Deficit

New York’s fiscal landscape is facing a significant challenge, with the State Division of Budget forecasting a budget deficit of  $9.1 billion for the upcoming year with increased holes in subsequent years.

Comptroller DiNapoli’s recent report highlights the fiscal predicament, noting that revenues are expected to decline year-over-year in the current fiscal year. At the same time, expenditures are projected to grow at a faster rate. The report underscores the ongoing economic impact of COVID-19, including the struggle to recover all jobs lost during the pandemic.Budget Director Blake Washington has instructed State agencies to submit flat 2024 spending plans with no increases. Governor Hochul has said she is determined to avoid tapping into the reserve funds or raising taxes to bridge the deficit. The Legislature is likely to offer a variety of counter-proposals in an attempt to preserve programs and services. Already, the fiscally conservative Empire Center is advocating for spending cuts, particularly to Medicaid and education aid, while the more liberal Fiscal Policy Institute is calling for the use of reserves and targeted tax increases.

The budget-making process will formally kick off in mid-January with the Governor’s Executive Budget Proposal, followed by Budget hearings, legislative responses, and a final enacted budget due by April 1, 2024.

 

Staff Accomplishment

Congratulations to Michele O’Connor for being recognized as a notable New Yorker advocating for policy changes in City & State’s ‘Who’s Who in Government Relations’
Click here to view the full list!

Hodes and Landy is proud to continue to sponsor The Rotary Club of Delmar’s Teeing for Charity golf event to benefit the “Mission for Marcus.”

New York Capital Brief:

Conceptual Budget Agreement Reached

After surpassing the statutory deadline by 28 days and counting, Governor Hochul confirmed in a surprise Thursday evening press conference that “a conceptual [budget] agreement has been reached.” State Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins and Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie were not present for the announcement.

New York Capitol Brief:

Budget Deadline to Be Extended Yet Again

After missing the April 1st statutory budget deadline and passing three initial budget extender bills. Legislators met Thursday, April 20 to approve a fourth extender, which is set to expire at Noon Monday, April 24th.