ALBANY, NY (September 2, 2020) — Last week, the New York State budget office informed school districts statewide that it was temporarily withholding 20 percent of the State’s payments. This week, school districts across the state, including Albany and Schenectady  have announced detrimental cuts because of this. In response, Citizen Action of New York released the following statement: 

“While Governor Cuomo parades around the Hamptons having dinner with billionaires, school districts across the state are pinching pennies in an attempt to prepare for reopening. The Governor is playing a high stakes game with the federal government but New York’s children, especially Black and Brown students, are the losers every time. Across the state, we’ve already seen the negative effects of the State’s withholding of school aid,” said Ivette Alfonso, President of Citizen Action of New York. “This weekend, three major districts announced plans to shift to virtual learning and implement hiring freezes, layoffs and cancellation of vital programs like pre-K. It is immoral, that in the midst of a pandemic, New York State is deliberately putting the lives of students and communities at risk. This is no longer the worst case scenario; this is a crisis. It’s time the New York State Senate and Assembly came back to Albany and raised revenue on the ultra rich to fully fund public schools. Our communities can’t wait any longer.”