Governor Cuomo Announces More Reopenings, NYC Council Passes and Introduces New Legislation, Executive Budget for Fiscal Year 2022 Released, NYC 2021 Primary Election Debates

May 3, 2021

News in New York – Governor Cuomo Announces More Reopenings, NYC Council Passes and Introduces New Legislation, Executive Budget for Fiscal Year 2022 Released, NYC 2021 Primary Election Debates

Governor Cuomo Announces More Reopenings

Last week, Governor Cuomo made several reopening announcements. The Governor announced that NYC indoor dining will expand to 75% capacity beginning May 7, bringing it in line with indoor dining throughout the state. This followed the announcement that the midnight food and beverage service curfew will be lifted for outdoor dining areas beginning May 17 and for indoor dining areas beginning May 31. In addition, Cuomo announced that hair salons, barber shops and other personal care services will also expand to 75% capacity beginning May 7. Earlier in the week, the Governor announced that beginning May 15, gyms and fitness centers will expand to 50% capacity, casinos and gaming facilities can increase to 50%, and offices can increase capacity to 75%. Cuomo also announced that large-scale outdoor arenas and event venues will be allowed to increase to 33% capacity starting on May 19. These new reopening guidelines coincide with Mayor de Blasio’s announcement that he’s planning for NYC to reopen at “full strength” come July 1. However, Governor Cuomo stated that the Mayor doesn’t have the authority to lift restrictions, and although he’s hopeful that NY will be able to fully reopen before July 1, he doesn’t want to make projections.

NYC Council Passes and Introduces New Legislation

Last Thursday, the NYC Council convened a stated meeting, where they passed and introduced multiple pieces of legislation. The Council passed a bill to codify and make permanent the City’s Open Streets program, requiring DOT to manage or provide resources to at least 20 open streets sites in underserved areas. They also passed a package of bills to create a City-facilitated retirement savings program for private sector employees. In addition, there was legislation passed to address tenant data privacy, which will require owners of multiple dwellings that utilize smart access systems to provide tenants with a data retention and privacy policy, as well as establish restrictions on the collection and use of data collected from such systems. The Council introduced a bill that would require food service establishments to provide toilet facility access to food delivery workers. They also introduced a legislative package aimed to support third party food delivery service workers. The package includes a bill that would require that third-party food delivery services provide delivery workers with the option to set a maximum distance for trips, and another bill that would establish minimum per trip payments to third party food delivery service workers. The Council also introduced legislation that would ban NYC from hiring police officers from other jurisdictions who were fired for misconduct or resigned while being investigated for misconduct. You can find all of the bills passed and introduced here.

Executive Budget for Fiscal Year 2022 Released

Last Monday, Mayor de Blasio released the Executive Budget for NYC Fiscal Year 2022 (FY22), which will begin on July 1, 2021. The FY22 Executive Budget totals $98.6 billion, approximately $10 billion more than was included in the Adopted Budget for the current Fiscal Year (FY21). This dramatic increase is possible due in large part to federal funding from the Biden administration, increased Stated support for education, and better than anticipate tax revenues. The Mayor announced a number of programs that will be expanded or created using this funding, including investments in students and schools, the City Cleanup Corps, and reimagined public space with Open Streets and Open Restaurants. In addition the Mayor announced that the City will be setting aside $1.8 billion for reserves.

NYC 2021 Primary Election Debates

The NYC 2021 primary election is less than 2 months away, and all of city government will be on the ballot. With most NYC elected officials term limited out – including the Mayor, Comptroller, 4 out of the 5 Borough Presidents, and most of the 51-seat City Council – this will be the biggest landscape shift in NYC electoral politics over the past several decades. Starting today, PoliticsNY will be hosting debates for each City Council race as well as those for Borough Presidents, Mayor, Comptroller and Manhattan District Attorney. Each debate will be hosted over zoom, and you can find the full schedule and register here.

Please contact Katie Schwab or Rose Christ of Cozen O’Connor Public Strategies with any questions you may have regarding this note or if you’re interested in ways to engage on these issues.

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