With the session clock ticking, the notorious Albany negotiating tactic of lumping together thorny items to get them all passed — in a measure sometimes labeled a ''big ugly''— rather than holding individual up or down votes appears to be in play. Online news site Capital New York reported Monday that two of Albany's most pressing issues — New York City rent regulations and the education investment tax credit — are set up to be handcuffed to each other by Gov. Andrew Cuomo.
"As has always been the case, the Assembly supports stronger rent regulations, the Senate supports the education tax credit, and the governor is a proponent of both," Cuomo spokeswoman Melissa DeRosa told Capital New York.
Oh sure, Cuomo's in favor of both, so why not link them and help passage?
Critics of Cuomo had another way of looking at it:
"The governor is willing to let rent regulations go up in flames, if he can't pass an education tax credit for his hedge fund supporters who donate to private and charter schools to double their money, while our public schools starve, still waiting for $5 billion in CFE funding," state Sen. Bill Perkins, D-Manhattan, said in a statement. "It's outrageous and wrong, and we will not stand for it. The governor has said he is committed to repealing vacancy deregulation, and he needs to follow through on that commitment, without qualification."
I have a difficult time believing Cuomo has the political courage to destroy rent regulations if he doesn't get his education tax credit.
So the heavy hearts in the Assembly need to stand up to him and say "No to your education tax credit, no to linking the tax credit to rent regulations."
So far, it seems that is what they're doing:
By the end of the day Monday, pushback from legislators had dimmed the chances of linking the tax credit to rent regulations, said people familiar with the conversations.
We'll see if that continues.