Senate Republicans confirmed today that they are returning to Albany on Wednesday to discuss a possible session as Gov. Andrew Cuomo presses the Legislature to take up his economic plan, which is expected to include tax hikes for the rich and tax cuts for the low and middle class.
“The Senate Republican conference will meet Wednesday at noon in Albany to discuss a number of issues, including our commitment to cutting taxes to create new private sector jobs. At this time, however, no session has been scheduled,” said Senate Republican spokesman Scott Reif.
Assembly Democrats are set to hold conference on Tuesday, with a possible session Wednesday or Thursday, spokesman Michael Whyland said Friday.
So with lawmakers in town this week, what will happen?
As Gannett’s Albany Bureau reported today, Cuomo is expected to announce a New York version of an economic stimulus package that could use revenue from higher taxes on the wealthy to provide tax breaks and fund infrastructure projects.
The Legislature and Cuomo are also expected to address how to provide additional aid and incentives to business and homeowners still recovering from tropical storms Irene and Lee.
Cuomo is in Albany today, presumably working out the details of a potential session. But Cuomo has indicated he wouldn’t call lawmakers back to Albany unless they had an agreement.
“I don’t want to call a special session just for the theater of calling a special session,” Cuomo told reporters in Albany last week.
So far, no official session has been called by Cuomo.
Still, as Gannett first reported Thursday, some Republican senators have warmed to the idea of keeping higher income taxes on the wealthy to drive revenue for specific economic goals, such as fixing the state’s infrastructure and closing its budget gap.