Griffo calls on Cuomo administration to release federal funds for tenants and landlords

New York State Sen. Joseph Griffo, R-I-C-Rome, joined with members of the Senate and Assembly Republican Conferences today to call on the Cuomo administration, along with the Senate and Assembly majority leaders, to take the necessary steps to release needed relief to tenants and landlords across the state.

While many New Yorkers continue to suffer financially as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, the administration has withheld $1.3 billion in federal COVID-19 assistance since Dec. 31. 2020. This federal relief, which was part of the second round of the CARES Act, must be distributed specifically to tenants and landlords and used by Sept. 30, 2021, according to federal guidelines. If the funds are not used by then, the United States Department of Treasury is obligated to claw these funds back and reallocate them to other states.

Sen. Griffo and his Republican colleagues have asked Budget Director Robert Mujica and Gov. Andrew Cuomo to send a Message of Necessity to the Legislature, which would give the governing body the ability to pass an appropriation bill enabling state agencies to distribute these federal funds to tenants and landlords in a timely manner.

“We have continued to see a reluctance from the Cuomo administration to release federal pandemic funding in a timely manner," Sen. Griffo said. “During these difficult economic times when relief is desperately needed, there is no excuse for the administration to be playing these games. It is time for the administration to provide this important relief to help ease the significant financial burden felt by so many New Yorkers.”