WXXI AM News

Capitol Bureau

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo will deliver his second State of the State Address Wednesday, January 4th at 1:30 p.m.  WXXI will carry the speech live on WXXI-TV, WXXI-AM 1370 and WXXINews.org.

This will be Cuomo's first State of the State speech during which he can discuss a record of achievement as governor.  Last year's address came just days after his inauguration following a decisive election victory in November of 2010.

New York NOW's Matt Ryan put together the video montage below looking back at Cuomo's first year in office.

Governor Cuomo achieved a number of goals in his first year as governor, but Cuomo does not intend to rest easy during the upcoming  second year of his term.

Governor Andrew Cuomo has begun a count down clock to promote tax code changes approved in December that will lower taxes for the state’s middle class.

One of the biggest and most controversial issues facing New York in the New Year is hydrofracking.  Governor Cuomo’s environmental department is conducting a review process and is likely to begin issuing permits sometime in 2012.

Earlier in the year, it seemed that the Cuomo administration was on a fast track to allow hydrofracking in New York. In June, state environmental officials proposed allowing the gas drilling process on some private lands in the state, and began a review process.

The dismantling of one of the last Occupy encampments in New York ended with pepper spray and arrests, as Albany City workers moved in and took down tents at the Occupy Albany encampment.

Occupy Albany’s camping permit expired at 7 am, by mid afternoon city workers moved in and began dismantling tents. When workers tried to take down the last tent, protesters seized it and began marching up and down the city streets in the midst of the evening rush hour. They chanted “Occupy Albany all day, all week”, and “banks got bailed out, we got sold out”.

One of the biggest issues facing state lawmakers in 2012 is the redrawing of new district lines. The topic has been the elephant in the room during much of this year, with Governor Cuomo threatening to veto any lines that are gerrymandered and not drawn in a non partisan manner. 

The first public meeting of the state’s new ethics commission came on the day that another State Senator pleaded guilty to felony corruption charges. Questions were raised about the closed door portion of the commission’s meeting.

Shortly after noon, The Chair of the Joint Commission on Public Ethics, Janet DiFiore, called the meeting to order.

“We have a tremendous amount of work ahead of us,” DiFiore told the assembled commissioners.

State Comptroller  Tom DiNapoli’s office is helping municipalities comply with the complexities of the new property tax cap, but he says it’s too early to tell yet what the out come of the new law will be.

DiNapoli says so far, around one fifth of counties have taken preliminary steps to override the cap, as they are permitted to do under the law as long as they can muster a 60% majority vote from their county legislature or board of supervisors.

State lawmakers have not yet released their proposed  maps for new district lines. A government reform group has tried to fill the void by releasing its own set of maps that it says are a model for non partisan districts.   

Sue Lerner, with Common Cause, says her group has released proposed maps of legislative districts that it says are non partisan, and are based on grouping regions and neighborhoods with similar characteristics together.

“They’re built on factors that are important to people, not politicians,” said Lerner.

The state’s new ethics commission, announced this week,   is already raising some questions after holding its first meeting in private, without public notice.

Governor Cuomo and legislative leaders announced their appointments to the new Joint Commission on Public Ethics, or JCOPE early in the week. It was the last possible day before the commission was, under law, required to begin its work. 

The first meeting was held late Thursday. It was a private teleconference, and no public notice was given.  The Associated Press first reported the existence of the meeting.

Pages