ALBANY -- Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan wasn’t impressed by New York Mayor Bill de Blasio’s appearance at the State Capitol this week.
De Blasio – a Democrat who has worked vigorously to end Republican control of the Senate -- asked senators to renew a law giving the mayor’s office control of city schools for another seven years. De Blasio asked for the same in 2015 – only to get a one-year extension.
In a statement Thursday, the day after the hearing, Flanagan (R-East Northport) gave the mayor the same cold shoulder as last year.
“I am no closer to signing off on an extension of mayoral control now than I was 24 hours ago,” Flanagan said. The Republican said the Democrat “left too many unanswered questions and failed to provide specifics” on many issues.
Here is Flanagan’s full statement:
“This morning, I had an opportunity to review the Senate Education Committee’s public hearing on mayoral control for New York City held yesterday in Albany. As the former Chairman of the Education Committee for the last five years, I have a deep understanding and am acutely aware of the importance of a first-class, quality education for our young people.
“While I appreciate Mayor de Blasio … making time to have a conversation on this important issue, I am no closer to signing off on an extension of mayoral control now than I was 24 hours ago. Too often, the Mayor showed a disturbing lack of personal knowledge about the City schools. In addition, he has left too many unanswered questions and failed to provide specifics on many of the issues raised by my colleagues on both sides of the aisle. Until that occurs, I will not entrust this Mayor with the awesome responsibility of operating the New York City school system.
“Our Education Committee will hold a second public hearing in New York City on May 19 to further examine this issue, giving Mayor de Blasio and his administration another chance to make their case in a more thorough and more convincing way.”