de blasio childhood education Mayor Bill de Blasio resisted an alternative to his proposed tax plan Monday after reports suggested Gov. Andrew Cuomo was looking for a way to fund universal pre-kindergarten statewide.
Credit: @deBlasioNYC via Twitter

Mayor Bill de Blasio resisted an alternative to his proposed tax plan Monday after reports suggested Gov. Andrew Cuomo was looking for a way to fund universal pre-kindergarten statewide.

One of his signature proposals during the campaign, de Blasio is pushing to fund universal pre-kindergarten and after school programs with a income tax hike on the wealthiest New Yorkers.

"We're asking the wealthy to do a little more. We think they can handle it," de Blasio said during a press conference touting labor support of the plan.

 

While the mayor declined to comment on what he would do if the state funded pre-kindergarten, he noted that children are often the first affected by budget cuts.

“We know the history. We know that if it is not protected, it will be fought each and every year. And that’s not good, that's not healthy, for our children. Again, if the state has additional resources," he said. "There are any other appropriate things that need to be addressed, things that New York City has been waiting for for a long time."

The governor previously expressed support for universal pre-kingergarten but has remained vague about funding for any expansion.

During a press conference Monday, Cuomo denied a Capital New York report that he would announce plans to fund universal pre-kindergarten in Wednesday's State of the State address.

De Blasio said he wouldn't alter his plans for the tax until he heard for Cuomo directly.

If state funding were to come, de Blasio said, "We’re not going to bargain against ourselves."

"We don’t want half-measures. We don’t want partial funding,” he added.

Follow Anna Sanders on Twitter @AnnaESanders

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