At least they still talk.
Without getting into the details, Mayor de Blasio last night revealed that he and Governor Cuomo spoke after the state legislature passed a budget that put a leash around the city.
Looking at the budget, you’d think that we were back in the 1970s where the city was a step away from bankruptcy and the rest of the state as going to have bail out the five boroughs.
The shoe is now very much on the other foot and the city is the straw that stirs the rest of the state’s drink. It’s Buffalo – not Brooklyn – that needs to get propped up with a massive influx of state cash. And yet it’s New York that’s treated like an inmate just released from prison with the governor serving as a parole officer.
State education money will have to be accounted for by every single school; NYCHA will only get additional money with an independent monitor doling it out. The city is being forced to put more money into the subways – but will ultimately have little say about how it is spent.
Speaking at length for the first time about the budget in his weekly “Mondays with the Mayor” segment, de Blasio licked his wounds while sizing up the entire situation.
“I never get that call that says, ‘How can we help you get the job done?" What would make your life, the city, work better. What would make the schools work better, what would make NYCHA work better?" A lot of politics, a lot of interference, a lot of red tape, that's what I get,’’ de Blasio said.
It’s not clear why Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie and his fellow New York City Democrats went along with some of this budget plan. Perhaps he took a prolonged bathroom break during the marathon budget talks as Easter approached.
Regardless of how it was made, more sausage will be delivered to the city’s mass-transit system – which is largely overseen by the state. It could be a good thing for straphangers. But if things don’t improve, the mayor is already pointing his finger.
“The governor has gotten everything he asked for. Great. Take responsibility. My message is really clear: the MTA is his. He's in charge of it. He names the head of it. He decides the budget. Take responsibility. Fix the subways. There's no more excuses, there's no more delays. Just go do it,’’ de Blasio said.
When it comes to his next phone call with the governor, it doesn’t sound like they need to be on the friends and family plan.