Gov. Cuomo vetoed a bill late Saturday that would have required the state to fund legal services for the poor in each county.
Cuomo’s office in a New Year’s Eve statement released just over an hour before the bill was required to be signed or vetoed said last-minute negotiations with the Legislature to address the governor’s concerns failed to yield a deal.
“Until the last possible moment, we attempted to reach an agreement with the Legislature that would have achieved the stated goal of this legislation, been fiscally responsible, and had additional safeguards to ensure accountability and transparency,” Cuomo spokesman Richard Azzopardi said. “Unfortunately, an agreement was unable to be reached and the Legislature was committed to a flawed bill that placed an $800 million burden on taxpayers — $600 million of which was unnecessary — with no way to pay for it and no plan to make one.”***
Jonathan Gradess, executive director of the New York State Defenders Association, called Cuomo’s decision to veto the bill “stunning.”
“We are all shocked that the Governor vetoed a bill that would have reduced racial disparities in the criminal justice system, helped ensure equal access to justice for all New Yorkers, provided improved public defense programs for those who cannot afford an attorney, and much-needed mandate relief for counties, Gradess said. “The governor refused to accept an independent oversight mechanism on state quality standards, and now, sadly tens of thousands of low-income defendants will pay the price.”
I know this upsets tax cut jeebus, but taxpayers are supposed to foot the bill for this, you fucking douchenozzle. Geneticists should study Cuomo, as we appear to be seeing a gene pool decline in real time.