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NY Gov. Hochul Convenes Special Session Of State Legislature

New York Governor Kathy Hochul speaking at the state capitol Aug. 31, 2021.jpg
WAMC Screenshot
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New York Governor Kathy Hochul speaking at the state capitol Aug. 31, 2021

New York Governor Kathy Hochul is convening a special session of the state legislature calling lawmakers back to Albany starting at noon Wednesday. The Democrat says she wants lawmakers to extend the state’s eviction moratorium and continue rent relief funding into mid-January.

“Especially since the state of New York failed in its responsibility to get the money that was allocated by Congress out to the people in need earlier this summer,” Hochul said in a Tuesday evening address from the State Capitol. “Therefore we want to expand the safety net for people who qualify for rental and landlord assistance. We can no longer wait and nor can they.”

The state’s eviction moratorium ended on Tuesday and the U.S. Supreme Court struck down a federal freeze on evictions last week. Hochul, who took over for Governor Andrew Cuomo Aug. 24, has been critical of the state’s disbursement of rental relief since taking on the top job. While Democrats control the state legislature, lawmakers of both parties have expressed similar frustration.

Hochul says she also wants to alter the state’s open meetings law to allow virtual proceedings. The governor says she also intends to name her nominees to the state body that oversees New York’s new recreational marijuana industry. Those nominees need legislative approval.