March 2, 2021
ALBANY — New York state lawmakers struck a deal Tuesday to strip Gov. Andrew Cuomo of his COVID-19 emergency powers and return matters like lockdowns to local control, NBC New York reports.
The deal would cancel the emergency powers granted to Cuomo a year ago, in the early days of the pandemic, that gave him free rein to order measures like quarantines and masks.
The news comes on the heals of reports that the FBI and the U.S. attorney’s office in Brooklyn launched an investigation into Cuomo’s handling of nursing homes and other long-term care facilities during the pandemic.
In addition to allegations that he botched the state’s response to the pandemic, Cuomo is also mired in a slush of sexual harassment allegations.
“I think everyone understands where we were back in March and where we are now. We certainly see the need for a quick response but also want to move toward a system of increased oversight, and review. The public deserves to have checks and balances. Our proposal would create a system with increased input while at the same time ensuring New Yorkers continue to be protected,” Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins said in a statement.
Assemblymember Carrie Woerner tweeted the outlines of the widely reported deal Tuesday afternoon:
Woerner said she understood a bill would be passed as early as this Friday.