On Wednesday January 4, Governor Cuomo set out his plan for 2012 in the State of the State Address. Here are a couple of highlights:
- There is a $2 billion budget gap for the upcoming fiscal year (which begins April 1). The good news is that this number is down from an earlier estimate of about $3.5 billion.
- NYC must end fingerprinting for food stamp applications. Huh? Is this for real?
- Buffalo was promised $1 billion in economic development incentives (details to be determined). Holy crap. Lucky Buffalo.
- Fracking was not mentioned. How should this omission be interpreted?
- The state constitution should be amended to allow for casino developments off Indian land. I imagine that this will give local governments some control over where casino development occurs, but it may cause conflict as communities jump on this bandwagon.
- Funding for public transit was not mentioned, although there will be money for roads and bridges.
- Cuomo wants to initiate public financing for election campaigns as well as lower campaign contribution limits. Federally, things are moving in the opposite direction, so this is an interesting development.