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De Blasio Discusses Tax Proposal With State Assembly Members

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Mayor-elect Bill de Blasio met with Democratic members of the state Assembly Monday, the beginning of his fight to raise taxes on the rich to pay for pre-kindergarten and after-school programs. NY1's Grace Rauh filed the following report.

Assembly Democrats are expected to help Mayor-elect Bill de Blasio shepherd his tax-hike proposal through Albany. He met with them Monday behind closed doors to discuss the plan.

"We got a very clear vote of confidence from the Assembly members in the room," de Blasio said. "A lot of energy. A lot of willingness to help us make this a reality."

Assembly Democrats, though, were never expected to be a problem for the mayor-elect. Getting state Senate Republicans and Governor Andrew Cuomo to support his plan will be a tougher sell.

A recent poll found that about two-thirds of the state's voters support de Blasio's plan to raise taxes on city residents who make more than $500,000 a year. The money will be used to pay for pre-k and after-school programs.

De Blasio thinks that polling like that will help him make his case.

"The public supports this for a reason, that the public of this city and this state understand that we are falling behind educationally" he said.

De Blasio still has not announced any appointments to his administration, but he said that at least one or two significant jobs will be filled later this week.

"The announcements are coming, and nothing's final until it is final, so I'm not going to say anything more right now," he said.

The mayor-elect has talked about candidates he has interviewed for police commissioner. The city's former police commissioner, Bill Bratton, is considered a front-runner for the post.

When it comes to his schools chief, though, de Blasio has said much less, and he is not interested in narrowing the field to a few finalists that he makes public.

"We're going to welcome input from the members of our transition committee and well beyond," he said. "We're not going to have a beauty contest. We're not going to put the different finalists on display, no."

There is still no word on whether de Blasio and his family are going to be moving into Gracie Mansion, but he said that he will announce his decision by the end of the week.

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