March 4, 2014
By Marc Bussanich
New York, NY—Mayor Bill de Blasio said his plan to implement pre-K and after-school programs are ready to go in the coming school year; the only missing component is funding. He’s heading to Albany Tuesday to try to sell his funding ideas to skeptical legislators and Governor Cuomo. Video
“This is a game changer, but we can’t achieve this vision for after-school without dedicated, sustained and sufficient resources,” said de Blasio.
The mayor explained during the mayoral race last year that the city would be able to pay for the expansion by raising taxes by .05 percent on New Yorkers earning $500,000 or more annually. The city needs authority from Albany to do that, where the governor and state senate Republicans are opposed to raising taxes.
The Mayor’s plan for expanding after-school programs calls for increasing from 239 middle schools to 512 schools that would be open from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m., and reaching nearly 120,000 children, up from 56,369 students currently served.
During the press conference at City Hall, the mayor was asked whether he would be meeting with either Governor Cuomo or Senate Republican leader Dean Skelos tomorrow in Albany. The mayor said he didn’t have scheduled meetings with either leader.
“My hope is to meet with a range of legislative leaders and members of the legislature.”
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