New York celebrated the election of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris over the weekend.
After four contentious years dealing with the Trump administration, hopes are high that the state will enjoy improved relations with the White House and support for major projects to boost its economy.
As citizens celebrated in the streets wearing COVID masks, Governor Andrew Cuomo said, “This is a historic day. After the darkness, division and hate of the past four years, America has spoken and rejected more of the same. Congratulations to my good friend President-Elect Joe Biden and to Vice President-Elect Kamala Harris. Today we go forward in hope and progress.”
The Governor of New York has also expressed confidence the election result will prompt Congress to kick start talks on a stimulus plan that could help the state dig itself out of a $13 billion budget gap.
“I believe Joe Biden, he will get a stimulus bill,” Cuomo said. “He campaigned on it. He knows how necessary it is.”
The election of Mr Biden could also herald progress on the state’s infrastructure rebuilding and major projects including the Hudson River rail tunnel, called the Gateway Program.
Carlo A. Scissura, president & CEO of the New York Building Congress, said there is need for a significant federal infrastructure stimulus plan – one that includes funding for the Gateway Program.
“Today marks a critical opportunity for the next chapter of our nation’s growth and success,” said Scissura.
“President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris have made a commitment to the American people to build our economy back better, starting with a comprehensive coronavirus relief plan and the mobilization of our workforce.
“Any relief plan must include direct funding to both the City and State of New York, as well as the Port Authority and MTA. It has been proven that infrastructure investment in times of crisis can uplift our nation, and New York Building Congress, our members and the building industry can and will play a prominent role in rebuilding New York, the country and their economies.
“We look forward to working closely with the Biden-Harris administration to get people safely back to work, jumpstart our economic recovery, rebuild our strained infrastructure and build a better New York and America for all.”
The Council of Large Public Housing Authorities executive director Sunia Zaterman hailed the “groundbreaking accomplishment” of Kamala Harris as the first woman of color elected to the vice presidency.
Zaterman called for increased federal investment in public and affordable housing, policy reform to allow public housing authorities to be nimbler in serving their residents, and dismantling systemic racism are key elements of their housing and campaign promises.
And the Associated General Contractors of America said it is ready to work with the new president on recovery measures. AGA chief executive officer, Stephen E. Sandherr, said, “we are eager to work with the president-elect as he and his team fashion their promised infrastructure investment proposals. In addition, we look forward to working with federal officials to craft a new, long-term highway and transit law, enact liability reform that protects honest firms from frivolous coronavirus lawsuits and pass other tax and credit measures that will stimulate economic growth and demand for construction.”
Sandherr added, “The voters have made it clear they expect its national leaders to get things done. Now that the election is over, we expect President-elect Biden and the new Congress to keep their promise and dedicate themselves to the task of bringing together all parties and positions by enacting measures that will help rebuild our country.”
Despite the celebrations over Biden’s securing the 270 electoral votes necessary to become president-elect, President Donald Trump, a New York native, has not conceded and has vowed to fight the results in the courts.