ALBANY, N.Y. (WWNY) - Governor Andrew Cuomo has too much power. That’s what some New York state senators are saying.
At the beginning of the pandemic, Governor Cuomo issued an executive order, declaring a state disaster emergency, giving him broader spending and decision-making powers with no expiration date.
State Senate Republicans say some of that power needs to come back to the legislators.
“Generally, the point is to re-establish a balance of power within three, co-equal branches of government. That’s the essence of our Constitution,” said Senator Joe Griffo (R. - 47th District).
Starting Monday, Senate Republicans will introduce a resolution every day this week in an attempt to curb the governor’s expanded authority.
State Senator Patty Ritchie said in a statement, “As lawmakers, we have a responsibility to be the voice of our constituents. Unfortunately, that voice has been silenced for far too long. As our state works to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, the Legislature needs to play an active role and be able to weigh in on major decisions that will impact all New Yorkers.”
This is the third attempt by GOP senators to restore some power. The first two were shot down by Assembly Democrats. But Senator Griffo says that there is bi-partisan concern.
“There is an acknowledgement from people on both sides of the aisle that we need now to - 10 months into this – to go back to a functioning government,” he said.
Griffo says that although there is bi-partisan frustration, he’s not sure if this initiative will receive enough bi-partisan support. But he says Republicans will continue to advocate for more power to come back to the Senate.