ALBANY – A bill that ‘rollsback’ New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s pandemic powers has passed in both the State Senate and Assembly.
Under the new legislation, Cuomo will be blocked from issuing new directives. However, he has the ability to make modifications and extensions to the hundreds of orders he issued this year current directives, and those changes need to be sent to committee chairs, and the leadership of the chambers at least five days ahead of time with an explanation, and the chance for them to give feedback.
The state senate voted 43-20 to curb Cuomo’s emergency pandemic power Friday afternoon. The state assembly followed up with a 107-43 vote just hours later.
State Senator George Borrello, who has been a vocal opponent to the executive’s expanded authority, denounced the legislation passed Friday as “fraud.”
“While they (the Democrat majority) repeatedly rejected our Conference’s efforts to end the emergency powers with a clean repeal of his authority, we still had a light at the end of the tunnel with the April 30 sunset date in the original legislation. By removing that sunset date, that hope has been extinguished,” said Borrello in a statement. “Instead, legislative leaders have enabled this ethically compromised Governor, who has lost the confidence of New Yorkers and the respect of his peers, to continue exerting his will without the checks and balances that our current circumstances demand.”
The governor was granted emergency powers last year when the pandemic first hit the state.
Cuomo is under fire and under investigation for his handling of COVID-19 in the state’s nursing homes, along with accusations of sexual harassment against former aids.
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