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New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo will still receive a $25,000 pay raise in 2021, despite the state's $63 billion deficit as a result of revenue losses tied to the coronavirus pandemic.
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Cuomo's salary will jump from $225,000 to $250,000 on Jan. 1, 2021, according to a resolution passed by the state Senate and Assembly in 2019, making him the highest-paid governor in the nation.
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Meanwhile, judges and lawmakers in the state Senate and Assembly will not receive raises, according to a report released by the Commission on Legislative, Judicial and Executive Compensation on Monday evening.
“We understand the potential for significant budget cuts may be necessary at the state executive level as well if the federal government does not enact additional funding to address the economic hardship caused by COVID-19,” the panel wrote. "Substantial additional state monies will be needed to deal with the pandemic, including providing face masks, virus tracking, contact tracing, enforcement efforts, and distribution of the hoped for new pandemic vaccine.”
The commission cited a more than $6 billion gap between the state's receipts and spending last year as the reason behind the denied salary increase. The decision will remain in effect for the next four years, unless the Legislature passes their own law to alter their own salaries.
"Simply put the commissioners’ worst fears as articulated in the 2019 Report – a downturn in the state’s finances coupled with an inability to cover increased salary obligations – has unfortunately come to stark reality in the worst possible way," the commission added. "Granting raises to public servants, no matter how much they might otherwise deserve them, is simply not possible at this time."
Representatives for Gov. Cuomo and the Commission on Legislative, Judicial and Executive Compensation did not immediately return FOX Business' requests for comment.
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In addition, the governor will also receive an undisclosed amount of money through a publishing deal for his book “American Crisis: Leadership Lessons from the COVID-19 Pandemic,” which was released on Oct. 13. According to Cuomo, a portion of the sales will go to a coronavirus-related charity.
New York's Department of Budget has predicted that the COVID-19 pandemic will likely cause a $60.5 billion loss through fiscal year 2024.
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