Key Lawmakers Show Support for Mayor’s Pre-K Plan, Others Deride

On Tuesday, several New York City Council members  released a statement criticizing New York State Senate GOP Leader Dean Skelos’ remarks against New York City Mayor de Blasio’s pre-K proposal.

“The Mayor’s plan will help create a better, stronger New York City for generations to come,” said Council Member Daniel Dromm, a Democratic Chair of the Education Committee. “For Dean Skelos to say he will prevent a vote on this issue is very short sighted.”

Mayor de Blasio took his case to Albany last week to convince state lawmakers to give him the authority to raise taxes on higher-income New Yorkers to fund his plan, but recently Senator Skelos and other GOP leaders balked at the idea, telling reporters that he will not allow a vote on Mayor de Blasio’s pre-K tax to come to the floor.

“The last thing we need is to see high earners leave New York state because then we lose their tax dollars,” Skelos told reporters at the Capital Monday. “The bottom line is we have to cut taxes if we are going to make New York state competitive with other states and create jobs.”

Council Member Laurie Cumbo shot back in a statement at the GOP leader.

“Mayor de Blasio was elected on the promise to expand pre-kindergarten through a tax on the wealthiest individuals,” she said. “It is disgraceful for Senator Skelos and his minority coalition to disregard the will of the people, and it is simply immoral to choose the wealthy over our children.”

Mayor de Blasio, though, isn’t budging on his education plans. In his State of the City address on Monday he made it clear that pre-K is a necessity in his policy agenda.

“Raising taxes on the rich makes our commitment to our kids more than just words. It makes that commitment real. It makes that commitment fair,” he said.

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