Cuomo Calls New State Budget "Robust," Progressives Call It "Republican Austerity Warfare"
“It’s a totally opaque, not transparent, not sufficiently open and collaborative process to begin with, and it’s even more so now,” said Susan Lerner, the executive director of the good government group Common Cause New York. “In virtually every way possible, the individual representatives are cut out of this process, which is three leaders in a room, and now it’s even more locked down than usual.” Lerner said that lawmakers should continue voting on critical issues like election safety and security and rent after the budget is passed, and should work remotely like other sectors of the economy. The Senate and the Assembly have passed laws to allow them to work remotely, but Lerner said they were flawed. “The Assembly resolution is truly unusual in that it appears to require anyone who wants to vote in the negative to do so in the Assembly chamber in Albany,” Lerner said. “It also has a provision that if you don’t vote you’re assumed to vote yes.”