Monday, December 22, 2014

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NY1 ItCH: The Pre-K Express Heads Upstate

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"You can't always get what you want but if you try sometimes, you might just find you get what you need." – The Rolling Stones

The mayor today is making his fourth trip to Albany in a little more than two months, riding his pre-k express to the State Capitol in an effort to push through his income tax hike on the city's wealthiest residents.
On the other end of the train tracks, though, is the alpha-dog governor who seems unlikely to sign off on any kind of a tax in an election year.

The resolution could be disappointing for Hizzoner – or he could get some extra face-saving cash from Cuomo as the budget clock clicks down toward the end of this month. While the governor has pledged money for universal pre-k across the state, Team de Blasio insists that it won't be enough to pay for things to where the administration wants it this fall. (Although it seems unclear if the city really has enough teachers and space to fully implement the program by September.) If the governor is in a giving mood, another present could be coming from Cuomo; otherwise, the mayor should cut and run.

De Blasio's campaign for pre-k has largely been a success; the battle for his tax may have to wait for another day. While the pre-k funding stream is coming from the wrong spigot, at least it's water. The mayor is quickly learning that nothing comes easy in Albany – especially on a frigid winter day.

Bob Hardt

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