Mayor Mike Bloomberg personally delivered a message for Albany pols yesterday: Don’t short New York City to balance your budget.
Appearing before the State Assembly, the mayor said the $2.1 billion reduction in funding that Gov. Andrew Cuomo is proposing would cause “layoffs and services cuts that would be devastating to our city.”
In his proposed $132 billion budget, Cuomo is trying to shrink the state’s staggering $10 billion deficit.
“We all know that even in good economic times, adopting a budget is not easy, and these are far from the best of times,” Bloomberg said.
“And although the city has already taken major steps on its own to reduce our expenses, this year — more than ever — we need your help.”
Bloomberg said the cuts would cut about $1.4 billion in aid for public schools, $380 million in social services cuts, and $300 million in cuts to revenue-sharing funds, resulting in “particularly devastating” layoffs.
“We’re not asking the state to come up with more money. We know you have to cut back,” he said. “We’ll have to live with it. But you can find ways to mitigate or eliminate an awful lot of the pain, and let the economic engine of this state continue,” he said, adding that schools would be hit especially hard.
But State Budget Director Robert Megna said the city is seeing less of a cut to education funds, percentage-wise, than the rest of the state — about $579 million — and that teacher layoffs “should not be necessary.”
Bloomberg’s office didn’t return calls for comment.