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Plan calls to restore legislative authority, limit governor’s power & expand local authority
On Friday, Assemblyman Mike Norris shared that, following the launch of his new legislation known as the New York Business Emergency Relief Act, the Assembly minority conference announced it had chosen to include the entirety of the plan in its omnibus 2021 pro-business package, “Jump-Start New York: A Plan for Economic Recovery.”
“I am proud to work together with my colleagues to get New York back to work,” Norris said. “This bill would get people back to work, and our larger plan helps protect businesses and jobs for the future. It’s a real, substantial plan to get our economy back on its feet. After months of a shutdown, unemployment, uncertainty and talk, New Yorkers need and deserve action. I hope our colleagues across the aisle will take action on this plan to help us move New York’s economy forward.”
A press release said, “Aiming to help employers who were forced to close through no fault of their own, the New York Business Emergency Relief Act of 2021 would provide businesses that were deemed ‘nonessential’ with direct aid grants to offset lost income as a result of the governor’s executive orders. These businesses could include small retailers, historic sites, barber shops, gyms and movie theaters, among others. Funding for these grants would come from redirecting unused state settlement funding awarded to the state or repurposing economic development funding from programs like START-UP NY, a program that many even questioned the effectiveness of to begin with.”
In addition to the New York Business Emergency Relief Act of 2021, “Jump-Start New York: A Plan for Economic Recovery” includes 17 other economic development initiatives. It has proposals that would restore legislative authority and remove the governor’s temporary expanded powers, and calls for federal actions such as direct aid to schools and local governments. Further, the plan would expand local authority in times of emergency and create a joint Senate/Assembly emergency operations committee to provide direction and oversight during future state emergencies.
The plan also would allow nursing home residents to designate a loved one to be their “essential person” who would be able to visit and check up on them, even during times like those the state has experienced during the past year.
Other economic development proposals in the plan include repurposing the Regional Economic Development Councils, reevaluating “red” and “orange” micro-cluster zone designations, increasing rural internet access, supporting the agriculture industry, waiving certain licensing or fees, providing aid to landlords, extending or waiving certain regulations, and providing tax credits. A full copy of the plan can be viewed here.