Gov. Andrew Cuomo is once again shouting consolidation of local government. He’s made the same demand for the last decade. His proposal would eliminate funding to counties and communities.
911 dispatchers have been combined. Police and fire departments give mutual aid. Departments of public works share equipment and operators. What else can they do?
In cases where communities choose historical heritage, I would do the same. Community pride should be respected, not bought and sold. Why can’t the governor understand that?
Now for the head twister. He also wants a New York State Constitutional Convention, which will cost over $50 million. The proposal hasn’t passed since 1967. Why? The state Legislature has made over 200 changes to the Constitution in open session. Conventions have passed only six.
Women’s rights, ethics reform, the LLP loophole and rider service can all be done by the Legislature without a costly convention. Bullying, inefficiency and contradiction seem to be the governor's policy.
Staffing and infrastructure repairs are a constant battle for local government. Withholding funds only multiplies their problems. Governor, work with them, not against them. They want to cut taxes, too.