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Sen. Schumer pushing for federal funding for municipalities devastated by coronavirus

U.S. Senator Charles Schumer renewed his push for immediate, direct federal aid for state and local governments.

Posted: Jul 8, 2020 10:54 PM
Updated: Jul 9, 2020 9:41 AM

Standing outside Doubleday Field with David Bliss, chair of the Otsego County Board of Representatives; Gary Herzig, mayor of Oneonta; Ellen Tillapaugh, mayor of Cooperstown; and Allen Ruffles, Otsego County treasurer -- U.S. Senator Charles Schumer renewed his push for immediate, direct federal aid for state and local governments.

Schumer explained that as communities reopen and seek to recover from the devastating financial impacts of the COVID-19 crisis in New York, state and local governments need federal relief that can be used to pay for essential services, offset lost revenues and increased costs, and aid in economic recovery.

“Our state, county, and local governments heroically ratcheted up their spending to confront the COVID challenge, even when the virus ripped a hole in their budgets due to collapsing revenue,” said Senator Schumer. “Senate Republicans must join our push to act swiftly and decisively to provide a shot-in-the-arm of financial resources so state, county, and local governments can save tens of thousands of jobs, continue to offer essential services for their communities, and provide the assistance necessary to revive the economy. ”

The senator explained that with municipal governments across the state and the Southern Tier facing budgetary crises and forced to consider layoffs of tens of thousands of public health care workers, firefighters and EMS workers, police, sanitation workers, teachers, and other vital staff, additional aid for state and local governments is vital to community recovery as counties reopen.

Schumer added, “Providing urgent relief to state, county and local governments is not an abstract concept – it is keeping healthcare workers, firefighters, bus drivers and other public service workers on the job; it is preserving vital services during a pandemic; it is staving off tax hikes at the worst possible time for already cash-strapped New Yorkers; and it is providing resources to help keep small businesses open and rebuild local economies. Communities throughout Otsego County were nothing short of heroes as they fought on the frontlines to protect their residents, they shouldn’t have to fight to keep their jobs, stay afloat, and keep hospitals open.”

The senator explained that despite the unexpected good news of an increase in employment numbers for the private sector in June, job cuts within state and local governments continued to historically mount.

Specifically, the City of Oneonta estimates a more than $3 million deficit, Otsego County expects an over $12 million loss. Schumer said without direct, federal aid for municipalities, more and more staff in the Southern Tier will continue to be cut or furloughed, severely impacting government services and support to local communities as they reopen.

Several Otsego County leaders joined Schumer in his call for direct state and local aid.

“I thank Senator Schumer for his leadership in advocating for desperately needed financial support for local governments in this time of great uncertainty. The City of Oneonta is facing a potential deficit of more than $3,000,000 as a result of unexpected decreases in sales tax, state aid, and water, sewer and other fees,” said Gary Herzig, Mayor of Oneonta. “Without federal support, small cities like Oneonta will have no other options than to cut services including police and fire protection. Local governments are depended upon to provide for public safety, quality of life, and economic vitality. Cuts to these services will have a devastating impact on the people we serve and protect.”

Ellen Tillapaugh, Mayor of Cooperstown said, “Senator Schumer recognizes that for upstate New York, the Village of Cooperstown is a major economic engine which generates millions in revenue for regional businesses as well as employment to hundreds of thousands. But during the COVID-19 pandemic, that tourism engine has been shut down. There is a critical need for federal assistance on the state and local level to sustain the economy and prevent job loss.”

New York Coronavirus Cases

County data is updated nightly.

Cases: 2147318

Reported Deaths: 53632
CountyCasesDeaths
Kings28739010516
Queens28217910018
Suffolk2040833412
Nassau1870513184
Bronx1865306597
New York1427444530
Westchester1313192296
Erie905981814
Richmond770911855
Monroe698961117
Orange48988847
Rockland47345758
Onondaga39473680
Dutchess29847447
Albany25027358
Oneida22813518
Niagara20243375
Broome18789367
Saratoga15729168
Ulster14111258
Schenectady13361206
Rensselaer11422145
Putnam1073793
Chautauqua9008146
Chemung7840137
Oswego770493
Ontario750893
Steuben7013147
Sullivan676976
St. Lawrence675097
Cayuga642092
Jefferson625568
Wayne584873
Cattaraugus578193
Genesee5456124
Herkimer5255110
Clinton487833
Madison460689
Livingston455760
Fulton446193
Tompkins444152
Montgomery4291128
Columbia4130104
Cortland396864
Tioga387163
Warren376162
Wyoming362253
Allegany357987
Chenango355377
Otsego349747
Greene346879
Washington320355
Orleans314383
Lewis283736
Franklin257512
Delaware243139
Seneca203357
Schoharie173319
Essex162926
Yates118226
Schuyler109014
Hamilton3182
Unassigned8811
Out of NY0253
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