Picente Joins County Execs in Bi-Partisan Plea for Fed COVID Relief
Oneida County Executive Anthony Picente participated in a bi-partisan County Executive press conference on Thursday, asking the federal government for funding to cover COVID-19 expenses. Four county execs around the state were on the call sponsored by the New York State Association of Counties. Picente and his colleagues urged Congress to pass a coronavirus stimulus package with direct state and local aid.
Picente was joined by Republican County Executive Marc Molinaro of Dutchess County, Democratic Albany County Executive Dan McCoy and Democratic Ulster County Executive Pat Ryan.
"We have been on the front line of this pandemic," Picente said. "And now we're on the front line of the second part of this pandemic...we have an economic pandemic." On Friday, Picente told WIBX's Bill Keeler that he fears what the local economy is going to look like in the fall, and even worse, next year. "We've been through hard times before. We've been through economic situations before. The problem with this one is we have this health crisis that requires that added demand. And because of that the economic crisis with businesses closed, and things that have been shut down, and even with reopening the economic indicators are in a bad light." Picente said that Oneida County is currently down right now by about $6 million in sales tax revenues "and expending millions of dollars out the door."
"The difference with this economic crisis is that it has a health crisis in front of it," Picente added. "and that's what we want those leaders in Washington to understand."
In May, a House of Representatives bill with billions of dollars in stimulus money passed and this week the Republican controlled Senate moved forward on a stimulus plan that would include no funding for hard hit states and municipalities.
Watch the entire press conference here. It's hosted by NYSAC Executive Director Stephen Acquario.