Mayoral candidate and front-runner Bill de Blasio wants to tax New York City’s wealthiest taxpayers to fund a universal pre-K program and he can’t do it without the state’s approval.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo, a fellow Democrat, said today that he’s willing to talk through de Blasio’s plan after he’s elected mayor.
At an Oct. 22 debate, Republican candidate Joe Lhota said that de Blasio’s tax was dead on arrival with the governor.
“I never said that,” Cuomo said at a press briefing in Albany. Cuomo, who has cut taxes for the middle class while raising them on the state’s wealthiest residents, said that in telephone conversations with de Blasio he’s told the mayoral candidate that, once de Blasio wins, he should put together his plans and then come north for a visit.
“I invited him to Albany,” Cuomo said. “I said, ’You come present a plan, we’ll have the conversation with myself, and with the legislative leaders and we’ll see exactly what you’re talking about and we’ll take it from there.’”
Though Cuomo has endorsed de Blasio, he has a relationships with both candidates. Cuomo appointed Lhota to run the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, and widely credited Lhota after Hurricane Sandy for the quick fix of the New York City subway system, which suffered the worst flooding in its more than 100-year history. De Blasio worked for Cuomo when Cuomo ran the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development under President Bill Clinton.