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Cuomo seeks backing for school tax credit at Brooklyn churches, yeshiva

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo at the Capitol in

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo at the Capitol in Albany on March 18, 2015. Credit: AP

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo toured four churches and a yeshiva in Brooklyn Sunday to drum up support for his plan to revive an education tax credit that would benefit families with children in private and religious schools.

"If you want to go to public school, go to public school. ... If you want to to a private school, go to a private school," Cuomo said at an afternoon rally with students of Yeshiva Shaare Torah in Brooklyn's Midwood section. "If you can't afford the choice, you don't really have the choice, and that is not justice."

Cuomo's bill, called the Parental Choice in Education Act and unveiled last week with Cardinal Timothy Dolan in Westbury, would provide $150 million to offset private school tuition and encourage advanced programming at public schools, among other measures.

It is opposed by public school teachers unions as a backdoor voucher program.New York State United Teachers executive vice president Andrew Pallotta characterized the proposal as "tax giveaways to the wealthy who prefer private education."

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