Assembly & Senate Release One-House Budget Proposals

On Saturday, March 12th and Sunday, March 13th, the Assembly and Senate released their One-House Budget Proposals. In their proposal, the Assembly largely chose to keep policy issues out of the budget. Some of the Governor’s proposals that were removed from only the Assembly Proposal include:

  • Authorizing downstate casinos;
  • The Clean Slate Act;
  • Stopping the withholding of transcripts at institutions of higher education;
  • Streamlining new higher education program approval; and
  • Advancing the Building Codes, Appliance and Equipment Efficiency Standards and the Building Benchmarking Act of 2022.

Some of the Governor’s Proposals that were removed from only the Senate One-House Proposal include:

  • Authorizing a social equity fund for retail cannabis dispensaries;
  • Transferring SED health professional oversight to DOH;
  • Giving OMH & OPWDD the permanent authority to appoint temporary operators;
  • The ConnectAll Initiative (The Senate removed the Governor’s Proposal and replaced it with their own broadband proposal); and
  • Capital Program Reforms for OASAS.

There were also several Executive Proposals that both Houses removed from their One-House Proposals, some of which include:

  • Legalizing alcohol-to-go;
  • Streamlining SLA application requirements;
  • Stopping transcript withholding at institutions of higher education;
  • Requiring polling places on college campuses;
  • Banning non-compete and no-poach agreements;
  • Authorizing DASNY to provide its services to not-for-profit corporations; and
  • The Independent Ethics Reform Act (the Governor’s proposal to replace JCOPE).

There were several new sections added to the Assembly proposal. Some of the highlights include:

  • Five-year Capital plans for SUNY & CUNY
  • Student loan forgiveness for licensed social workers;
  • Exempting the first 35,000 battery, electric, or plug-in hybrid electric vehicles from State sales and compensating use taxes;
  • Requiring NYSERDA to develop a Comprehensive EV Fast Charging Station Implementation Plan;
  • Creating small business savings accounts;
  • Creating the State Office of the Utility Consumer Advocate;
  • Providing $500 million to help consumers with utility costs for gas and electricity;
  • Adding $25 million for a second round of the NY Restaurant Resiliency Grant Program;
  • Adding $20 million in funding to the Hunger Prevention and Nutrition Assistance Program (HPNAP); and
  • $1.25 billion for the Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP).

Some of the new highlights included in the Senate Proposal are:

  • $600 million for a SUNY “New Deal”
  • Enacting the Working to Implement Reliable and Equitable Deployment of Broadband Act (This is what the Senate replaced the Governor’s ConnectAll Proposal with);
  • Authorizing independent contractors to be eligible for the COVID-19 Pandemic Small Business Recovery Grant Program;
  • Two proposals that would utilize Complete Streets design principles and fund construction and improvements to implement them;
  • Establishing the “Clean Fuel Standard of 2022”
  • Establishing a Temporary Fuel Tax Holiday; and
  • Increasing the income eligibility threshold for the Tuition Assistance Program (TAP).

Finally, there were several new proposals that both Houses included, some of the most notable include:

  • $3 billion for Universal Childcare;
  • Repealing the Medicaid Global cap
  • Permitting deductions for commercial cannabis activity;
  • Establishing a credit for geothermal energy systems;
  • Creating the Empire State Digital Gaming Media Production Credit;
  • $500 million for NYCHA; and
  • $250 million for a new rent subsidy modeled off Section 8.

Now that both Houses have released their One-House Proposals, they have begun negotiations with the Governor to determine a final budget, which legally must be passed by April 1st. The Governor has said it is her intention to have the budget passed by that deadline or not long after it.