De Blasio starts Albany push for tax plan to fund universal pre-K
Mayor Bill de Blasio lobbied lawmakers from both parties at the state capitol Wednesday, appealing for support for his plan to fund universal prekindergarten with tax hikes on the city’s wealthiest.
He stressed the “moment of urgency” to the State Senate’s Independent Democratic Conference — the four Democratic senators who split from their party’s leadership to form a majority with that chamber’s Republicans.
He dropped in on a State Senate Republican reception. He met with the Senate’s main Democratic caucus, saying they’ve always “had the back of New York City.” He spoke with Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, a tax-plan supporter who introduced de Blasio at his chamber’s opening session to standing applause. De Blasio told reporters that he was honored by “friendly and positive reception.”
He was in Albany to attend Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo’s State of the State speech, but also to start making the case to lawmakers that they should allow the right to raise taxes on those making more than $500,000, with the revenue funneled into his universal prekindergarten and after-school initiative. He has not yet won the support of Cuomo, who highlighted plans to lower taxes in his speech.
(With Michael Gormley)