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Senate Majority leader accuses Gov. Cuomo of WITHHOLDING money from NYC

Senator Chuck Schumer claimed on Thursday that money directed toward New York City does not always make it past the state legislature in Albany in an apparent swipe at Governor Andrew Cuomo.  

The Senate Majority leader made the comment as he announced a massive COVID vaccine push in NYC which will see him hand $32billion allocated for the shots in the COVID relief bill in December straight to the city’s Mayor Bill de Blasio.

The New York Senator also promised an injection of an extra $6billion in other federal aid through stimulus checks and funding for the MTA as he praised de Blasio and promised Big Apple residents ‘help is on the way’. 

‘There’s money for the MTA, there’s money for our schools, and there is money for New York City,’ the New York Senator said as he appeared with de Blasio during the Mayor’s Thursday morning press conference.

‘With the mayor’s guidance and a little bit of prodding, we made sure that money doesn’t come through Albany, it goes directly to the city because when Albany gets the money sometimes the city doesn’t see all of it.’ 

The criticism comes amid calls for scandal-ridden Cuomo’s resignation after six women accused him of sexual harassment.  

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Senator Chuck Schumer announced a massive COVID vaccine push in New York City on Thursday as he took a swipe at Governor Andrew Cuomo amid calls for his resignation

Schumer announced that 100 vaccination sites will be established in community health centers in New York City. Pictured, people wait in line for a vaccine in NYC

Schumer announced that 100 vaccination sites will be established in community health centers in New York City. Pictured, people wait in line for a vaccine in NYC

Governor Andrew Cuomo was criticized by Mayor Bill de Blasio throughout the briefing

Governor Andrew Cuomo was criticized by Mayor Bill de Blasio throughout the briefing

‘The state is getting more than enough money to deal with their problems as well, but the city of New York gets over $6billion,’ he added. 

‘What that means is that our workers who, through no fault of the city’s but because of the loss in revenues, will continue to be working on the job, picking up garbage and doing healthcare and driving the buses and everything else.’

‘The mayor was always there working so there’s a lot of credit that goes around but Mayor de Blasio … thank you for making this happen.’ 

De Blasio also praised Schumer whom he referred to as a ‘Brooklyn Boy’ and said, ‘he went to bat for the city every day’. 

‘He looked out for the city of York by ensuring it’s not going through Albany,’ de Blasio claimed. ‘More is more, senator. Getting the vaccines down to the grassroots is so important.’ 

Funded by the federal government, the new vaccine effort will see the 100 new community vaccine sites, established at existing Community Health Centers (CHCs), receiving their own supply of doses.

The sites will be organized by the Department of Health and Human Services as part of an effort to expand vaccine access to underserved communities.

‘What I say to New Yorkers very simply is help is on the way,’ Schumer continued. 

He added that the centers already provide health care to about 10 percent of New Yorkers, with a focus on areas where it has previously been a challenge to get a vaccine appointment.

New York Senator Chuck Schumer was full of praise for NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio

New York Senator Chuck Schumer was full of praise for NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio

De Blasio also thank the senator for ensuring the money came straight to the city

De Blasio also thank the senator for ensuring the money came straight to the city

In the first three months of vaccine distribution in New York City, only 8 percent of administered vaccines have gone to black New Yorkers despite them making up 16 percent of the city’s population, according to Rochester First

‘That means more vaccines for New York and many more sites to administer. I’ve been working with the president and the mayor on the issue of vaccines because we all want more,’ he said. 

‘There’s light at the end of the COVID tunnel and that light is centered on access to a free vaccine for all New Yorkers.

‘There are going to be more vaccines and better access to vaccine sites and it’s on the way via this super charge effort that will utilize New York’s community health centers as New York’s federally funded vaccine sites.

‘New York is positioned to get more shots in arms, especially in areas where COVID has hit the hardest,’ Schumer said. ‘New York’s going to be well on the road to recovery. It’s something to celebrate.’

Schumer said that the vaccine push would aid a ‘quicker recovery for the city’ as he again appeared to take a swipe at Cuomo with praise for the way in which Mayor de Blasio ‘worked so well with the federal government’.

Gov. Cuomo has often complained that the federal government is not providing the proper support to New York during his own press conferences.

‘We’ll continue to work to get NY healthy and on the road to recovery,’ Schumer concluded, as he thanked President Joe Biden for spearheading the effort. ‘I have no doubt that New York will bounce back.’

‘I’ve been involved in helping New York through all our crisis, whether it was 9/11 or the financial crisis or Sandy. In each case the naysayers said New York’s finished. 

‘We’re never finished. People love New York, people want to come and live in New York from around the country and around the world and New Yorkers? We love New York, we couldn’t live anywhere else.’

Mayor Bill de Blasio had voiced frustration at the number of vaccine doses that were being allocated to the city. Pictured, people wait in line to receive COVID-19 vaccinations in NYC

Mayor Bill de Blasio had voiced frustration at the number of vaccine doses that were being allocated to the city. Pictured, people wait in line to receive COVID-19 vaccinations in NYC

Long lines and lack of access has been a major issue in the city's vaccine distribution, as pictured at the Javits Convention Center in Manhattan above in early March

Long lines and lack of access has been a major issue in the city’s vaccine distribution, as pictured at the Javits Convention Center in Manhattan above in early March

Schumer had also taken a hit at former President Donald Trump during the news conference, who he accused of ‘infinite nastiness’ for holding up the Gateway tunnel between New York and New Jersey.

The ‘super charged’ vaccine program announced by Schumer on Thursday will add to the increase in vaccines to New York in the coming weeks after President Biden on Wednesday announced that the government has ordered 100 million doses of the newly approved Johnson & Johnson dose.

De Blasio has often stated that the city could administer more than a half-million shots a week if it had the doses.

He has now said that he believes everyone in the city to be eligible by June 20 while Biden has said that all adults should be able to receive a dose by the end of May.

On Thurday, de Blasio also called for Cuomo’s resignation for the first time in light of a new ‘disgusting’ allegation leveled against the embattled governor. 

A sixth woman – and fifth former aide – came forward this week to accuse Cuomo, 63, of sexual misconduct. The woman, whose identity has not yet been made public, claims Cuomo called her to his Executive Mansion last year, where he reached under her blouse and fondled her.

When quizzed during a daily press briefing Thursday whether, considering the latest allegation, he was now ready to publicly call for Cuomo’s resignation, de Blasio let out an exasperated sigh, before adding: ‘Yeah’.

Closing his eyes and shaking his head, Hizzoner continued: ‘The latest report, and the fact that we can talk about how many people have been come forward with accusations. It’s not one, it’s not two, it’s not three, it’s not four, it’s not five – it’s six women who have come forward.

‘It’s deeply troubling, the specific allegation that the governor called an employee of his – someone who he had power over – he called them to a place and then sexually assaulted her is absolutely unacceptable.

‘It’s is disgusting to me,’ de Blasio continued. ‘He can no longer serve as governor. It’s as simple as that.’ 

Schumer during a radio interview called the new claim against Cuomo ‘nauseating,’ but did not call for the governor to step down. 

Later in the press conference, the Mayor also criticized Cuomo – with whom he has an ongoing feud that has heightened as the accusations of harassment and bullying have been presented against the governor – for not consulting the city over the change in quarantine requirements to domestic travelers to the state.

‘I believe in local control and here’s another case where New York City was not consulted even though we’re one of the biggest cities in the world. Of course, I have concerns about this,’ de Blasio said, adding he wanted to analyze the guidance with his health team for more detail.  

‘The introduction of the virus from outside has been one of the biggest and toughest X factors in this whole crisis and something we worry about very much going forward.’

Thursday’s announcement comes on the heels of the second largest stimulus bill in the nation’s history being passed on Wednesday that will provide $100 billion for New York state’s workers and families.


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