Hochul’s first State of the State addresses crime, minimum wage
ALBANY, N.Y. – In her State of the State speech, Governor Hochul prioritized housing, funding for mental health, and bail reform.
Governor Hochul is calling for changes to the controversial bail reform law and said, “The bail reform law as written, leaves room for improvement. Wanting to have a conversation with other leaders to talk about what they can do in the budget to make improvements to the law.”
She spoke about crime and public safety.
“We tripled our investments in gun violence disruption programs, on the streets connecting people where they are, and we collaborated with local governments like never before. From putting more cops on the subways working with the mayor, to working to break down barriers in places like Rochester and Syracuse. Those stakeholders are finally starting to work together, and their efforts are paying off,” Hochul said.
Hochul wants to bring the “Save Program” to Buffalo. It’s based on a pilot program here in Rochester for people who are at high risk of reoffending, to have them electronically monitored and have higher levels of supervision.
As for housing, her speech focused on the local levels of restrictions on home building and is proposing the “NY Housing Compact,” which will have different policy changes to help neighborhoods have more resources, with the goal to have 800,000 new homes built in the state over the next decade.
Another goal: The governor wants to link the state’s minimum wage to the rate of inflation to help workers with the cost of living. She also said that she doesn’t want to raise personal income taxes this year.
Another big takeaway: The governor is looking to add $1 billion to fund mental health care programs and expand beds and housing.
She announced plans to add 1,000 beds for inpatient psychiatric treatment and create 3,500 housing units to address gaps in the state’s mental health care system.
She says the state has underinvested in mental health care for a long time, and allowed the situation to become so dire that it’s a public safety crisis.
“I’m declaring the era of ignoring these individuals is over. Because our success as government leaders is measured by our ability to lift up all of our constituents. So, today marks a reversal in the states approach to mental health care and this is a monumental shift to make sure no one else falls through the cracks,” Hochul said.
She also want to increase insurance coverage for mental health services, expand outpatient services, and create greater accountability in hospital admission and discharges.
Hochul announced plans to add a thousand beds for inpatient psychiatric treatment and create 3,500 housing units to address gaps in the state’s mental health care system.
She said the state has underinvested in mental health care for so long, and allowed the situation to become so dire, that it has become a public safety crisis.
“I’m declaring the era of ignoring these individuals is over. Because our success as government leaders is measured by our ability to lift up all of our constituents,” Hochul said. “So, today marks a reversal in the states approach to mental health care and this is a monumental shift to make sure no one else falls through the cracks.”
The state is also increasing insurance coverage for mental health services, expanding outpatient services, and creating greater accountability in hospital admissions and discharges.
In response to the governor’s State of the State: Senate republican leader Rob Ortt released a statement saying in part, “Governor Hochul’s speech included policies that will make life more difficult for struggling families and small businesses.”
Ortt also said that Governor Hochul ignored the policies that have made New York less safe and less affordable.
Assemblywoman Marjorie Byrnes responded to Hochul’s address by saying: “The people, farms and businesses of the 133rd Assembly District and all rural communities across our state need help in every aspect of their daily lives – not lip service. Hochul and legislative leaders need to remember to provide for people living outside cities as well.”
This was Hochul’s first State of the State address since becoming the first woman elected governor in New York.