Cuomo And Dolan, Back Together
It was not that long ago that Cardinal Timothy Dolan was not happy with Gov. Andrew Cuomo, or most of Albany for that matter.
In fact, it was March when Dolan re-released an old TV ad pushing Cuomo to include the education investment tax credit in the state budget.
In the end, neither the tax credit, now linked with the DREAM Act for undocumented immigrants, went nowhere in the budget talks and fell off the table.
Today, Cuomo made two appearances with Dolan on either ends of the state to promote a new version of the EITC that focuses on parental choice.
The tax credit is meant to spur donations to public schools and scholarship programs that benefit private and parochial schools. It’s staunchly opposed by the state’s teachers unions, who are already smarting from a budget that made teacher tenure harder to obtain and easier to fire teachers deemed to be poor performing, regardless of tenure.
Dolan in appearances with Cuomo in Buffalo and on Long Island praised his renewed push on the issue, calling him “an enthusiastic leader” in education choice.
Dolan himself appears in a photo with Cuomo that accompanies the news release.
The EITC is now going through some rebranding with the introduction of the new bill: It’s now called the Parental Choice in Education Act.
The measure would provide up to $150 million in annual tax credits aimed at low-income families who want to send their children to non-public schools, scholarships for children in households with qualifying incomes to attend a public school outside of their district or private school and incentives for public districts to provide new programming, like after-school programs.
There are also tax credits for public school teachers purchasing school supplies.
Cuomo, too, was effusive in the need for the bill to pass in the final days of the legislative session, due to conclude June 17.
“The political powers in Albany are against this,” Cuomo told the crowd in Buffalo this afternoon.
He said state lawmakers will essentially put their fingers in the wind before determining whether they should pass the measure.
“If you don’t have the best education, you’re not going to compete in this global economy,” Cuomo said. “That’s why this choice is so important.”
But in what appeared to be an effort to address those lawmakers who have raised concerns about the bill, Cuomo said the measure wasn’t meant to introduce competition with public schools.
“It’s not religious schools versus public schools,” Cuomo said. “You don’t have to choose one or the other. We support and invest in both.”
Senate Republicans this year previously approved the EITC, which is yet to pass in the Democratic-led Assembly.
Assembly Democrats in particular remain skeptical over the legislation, which would be considered as Senate Republicans plan to back an increase in the cap on charter schools statewide, a move Cuomo also supports.
|Print article||This entry was posted by Nick Reisman on May 12, 2015 at 1:53 pm, and is filed under Andrew Cuomo. Follow any responses to this post through RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.|
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