Cuomo lays out big plans in annual address
Casey Seiler is reporting in the Times Union Gov. Andrew Cuomo delivered a combined State of the State and executive budget address from the Empire State Plaza Convention Center in Albany, Wed., Jan. 13. The $145 billion budget proposal will be under the state's flexible two percent cap, Cuomo said. The centerpiece of his proposal was a transportation infrastructure development plan, including massive upgrades to mass transit downstate and the replacement of LaGuardia airport. Cuomo offered no details on how the state would pay for it. On environmental issues, Cuomo said New York would aim to be coal-free by 2020. The governor also called for a $15 minimum wage for all state workers, indicated he would double the amount spent on pre-K education and said he would seek to expand the state's goal of doing 30 percent of its contracting with minority- and women-owned businesses. Cuomo said he would also create a program to spend $20 billion on affordable and supportive housing, in addition to other services to benefit the homeless. The address was interrupted early on by Assembly member Charles Barron (BAH-rone), a Brooklyn Democrat who has clashed with Cuomo in the past. Just minutes after Cuomo began his speech, Barron stood up and began denouncing him for failing to properly fund public education. Barron was ultimately led from the convention hall by Assembly Majority Leader Joe Morelle. Read the full story in the Times Union.