Perdido 03

Perdido 03

Friday, March 14, 2014

What Message Was Sheldon Silver Sending On Charter Schools Yesterday?

From Capital Confidential:

For the first time in anyone’s memory around here, Assembly Democratic Majority Speaker Sheldon Silver came into the LCA pressroom for a quick scrum on budget negotiations earlier Thursday. We’re all a bit unsure precisely what that means, although some suggested Silver was underscoring the importance of the New York City charter school fight.

Mostly though Silver signaled that, with the Senate still in conference and potentially hours away from coming up with their budget resolution (which the Assembly completed earlier in the week), talks in earnest may not pick up again until Monday.

“I don’t know if we actually accomplish anything…by doing it tomorrow (Friday) as opposed to Monday,” Silver said, referring to the task of setting up joint budget conference committees and the so-called Mother Ship to oversee them.

Cuomo wants the legislature to override de Blasio's cancellation of three charter co-locations and wants the state to take the power to override future mayoral decisions in cities across New York on the charter issue.

He also wants charter to receive more state aid and to enshrine their right to location.

If Silver made sure to step out in front of the press so that he could issue a stern warning over the charter issue, maybe Cuomo won't get his way.

I wouldn't bet too heavily on that outcome, however.

There is an awful lot of charter and hedge fundie money rolling into Albany to make sure the charter operators get their way.


  1. For what it's worth, Cuomo DID appear to walk back some of the language in the Senate resolution that deals with co-locations. He said, paraphrasing -- colocations, no colocations, these are decisions for the mayor. I just don't want the mayor to abort charters.

    I know you probably won't agree, but I wouldn't have a problem with a minor bump in the per-student funding that charters receive from the state (I'd support just about anything that claws back NYC tax money from Albany). But it needs to be accompanied by an understanding that part of the reason for the bump is that there's a new reality in NYC, and charters may need to start up and/or expand into space that they must find and pay for by themselves. A bump AND forced permanent co-locations is intolerable.

    1. Sorry, left out that Cuomo's remarks were on Brian Lehrer today.

    2. Tim, I think increasing state aid for charters is something that can be done, so long as the money isn't taken from the current public school budget and so long as it means charters are subject to some state scrutiny over how the money is spent.