With the state budget due next week, Gov. Kathy Hochul is getting some help from an unlikely political ally — former Mayor Michael Bloomberg.

While Hochul says she welcomes new Bloomberg-funded ads supporting her agenda, it’s drawing backlash from state lawmakers.

The sleek new ads from the group known as American Opportunity got its start with $5 million in seed money from Bloomberg.

What You Need To Know

  • Former Mayor Michael Bloomberg helped start a group that is winding money on ads for Gov. Kathy Hochul

  • The ads urge New Yorkers to support her priorities in the budget, like no new taxes on the wealthy and making changes to bail reform

  • Democrats in the Senate and Assembly have different priorities

“You want to live in a New York that is safe,” the narrator says in the ad. “Where you can raise a family and not get proved out. Kathy Hochul understands that. And her budget reflects that.”

While Bloomberg declined to comment, Hochul embraced the group’s support.

“I am happy to receive the support from all over the state of New York. I have support for the budget from the NAACP, from clergy from Buffalo to Long Island,” Hochul told reporters.

Hochul and legislators are currently negotiating a state budget that is due next week. They are very far apart on some key issues.

Hochul wants to avoid new taxes on the wealthy and she wants new changes to the state’s controversial bail reform law.

The legislature wants to tax the wealthy and leave the bail law as is.

Bloomberg spending money to bolster the governor’s positions over those of the legislature has rankled some of her fellow Democrats who held a press conference Wednesday morning at the state Capitol to criticize his involvement.

“I think this whole boondoggle with Bloomberg and his mailers and his new hobby of meddling in the state government has proven to us that you can have too much money,” says Brooklyn Assemblymember Emily Gallagher.

“Today is a call for the governor to work with us,” says Democratic Sen. Kristen Gonzalez, who represents parts of Brooklyn, Queens and Manhattan. “To build a New York that is representative of the most vulnerable New Yorkers, but also a call to Michael Bloomberg to say that we’d like to actually have him join us.”

Bloomberg, who originally ran as a Republican then changed his party affiliation to independent and then to Democrat, has not had a very good track record in Albany.

His proposal for a stadium on Manhattan’s West Side was defeated, as was his congestion pricing plan.

Lawmakers later approved a different version of congestion pricing.