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A fight is brewing in Albany over Mayor Bill de Blasio’s plan to fund universal pre-kindergarten.

On Monday, Republican Dean Skelos, co-leader of the State Senate Majority Coalition, said he would not allow for a vote on de Blasio’s proposal for a tax increase on the rich to pay for full-day pre-kindergarten in the city, according to published reports.

The Democratic co-leader of the State Senate Majority Coalition, Jeff Klein, responded by saying he will “not approve a budget that fails to realize the vision Mayor de Blasio and I share of providing high-quality, universal pre-k,” according to NY1.

Governor Andrew Cuomo is hoping to pass his fourth, consecutive on time budget this year.

“To deny a vote on something as urgently-needed and as widely-supported as funding universal pre-kindergarten is just plain wrong,” de Blasio said in a statement Monday.

The same day, de Blasio delivered his first State of the City address, where he again made the argument for his pre-kindergarten plan.

“If there are extra resources in the state budget, we must remember that the State Court of Appeals ruled – in the landmark Campaign for Fiscal Equity decision several years ago — that the children of this city deserve billions more in educational resources, and now is the time to provide it,” he said.

Governor Andrew Cuomo proposed a statewide plan for universal, full-day pre-kindergarten in his January budget address. The state would fully fund the program.

 

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