About 250 protesters gathered today at the Occupy Albany demonstration near the state Capitol, where activists planned to present their grievances to Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s office.
Buses from Buffalo, Rochester and other Occupy Wall Street encampments from around the state delivered the protesters to downtown Lafayette Park. Members of public employee unions have joined the Occupy Albany protesters.
Demonstrators planned to deliver letters and petitions to Cuomo and the state Senate to extend New York’s millionaire’s tax.
As the crowd formed up, some of the protesters chanted, “Andrew Cuomo you’re the worst. Time to put the people first.”
The Democrat-controlled Assembly has passed legislation to continue higher income taxes for New York’s top earners, though Senate Republicans have opposed it and Cuomo said he is against it.
Cuomo, addressing the State Democratic Committee at a hotel today, had no plans to meet the protesters, spokesman Josh Vlasto said. Meanwhile, the Capitol stairway that leads to the governor’s office was cordoned off early today for construction.
Protesters have camped in the city’s Academy Park since Oct. 21. More than 60 have been arrested by state troopers when they crossed into adjacent state-owned Lafayette Park after an 11 p.m. curfew Cuomo has vowed to enforce.
Protesters have been charged with trespassing and disorderly conduct, both low-level violations. Albany County District Attorney P. David Soares said he won’t prosecute peaceful protesters.
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