Buckley And The Conference Of Mayors Slam New Stimulus

December 21, 2020

Statement From The New York Conference Of Mayors:

ALBANY, NY — Today, the New York State Conference of Mayors and Municipal Officials (NYCOM) issued the following statement on the release of a congressional COVID-19 relief package that excludes critical emergency relief for local governments:

“It defies logic that Congress would pass a COVID relief package that did not include funding for local municipalities and, by extension, the first responders and other public servants who, for the last nine months, have put themselves at risk to keep our communities safe,” said NYCOM President and City of Binghamton Mayor Richard C. David. “I echo many of my fellow Mayors around the state and across the country when I say how disappointed I am that the issue of providing critical aid to all local governments was politicized and now essential services, projects and programs that our residents depend upon will suffer. While we acknowledge that the current package will provide some assistance to millions of families and businesses, it simply did not go far enough and was a missed opportunity to stave off harmful local government cuts that will exacerbate the stalled economic revival we are facing as a nation.”

“Congress has failed us yet again. It’s that simple. Instead of delivering much needed aid to local governments such as the City of Hornell, Congress delivered an ugly lump of coal just ahead of Christmas,” said Hornell Mayor John Buckley. “To compound matters, the Governor will almost certainly cut State funding across the board to cities and villages which will severely compromise the ability to deliver services at a local level.” Mayors weren’t looking for a bailout, but we desperately need relief from the fiscal crisis brought on by the economic shutdown. Washington and Albany are negatively impacting our ability to deliver essential services such as police, fire, and public works. While this stimulus package will provide relief to businesses and families, ignoring the dire reality of local governments is tantamount to sticking your head in the sand.”

“While NYCOM appreciates the forceful efforts of the New York Congressional Delegation in support of local relief,” said Peter A. Baynes, NYCOM Executive Director, “the fact remains that the effort — so far — has failed. Congress and the incoming Administration must come together in the fight for aid to stave off cuts that will have leave a lasting negative impact on our local economies.”