Hochul’s Vision for New York: Fighting Crime and Building Housing

Even so, advocates for defendants and some lawmakers are likely to object to the change, pointing to the Federal Bail Reform Act of 1966, which says that judges should always impose the least restrictive conditions of release necessary to assure a defendant’s appearance. The act was updated in 1984, allowing judges to consider defendants’ “dangerousness” to any person or to their community, offering states the option to choose between standards. New York is currently the only state not to use some form of a dangerousness standard.

Ms. Hochul framed her housing plan as an imperative to lower costs for struggling New Yorkers, curb the number of people flocking to other states and spur economic development.

But her attempt to unravel restrictive land use policies and building regulations is bound to spark tension across the state. If a locality does not meet its state-imposed housing target, it may trigger a special process allowing developers to propose and build bigger buildings, even without the local government’s approval.

The state estimates these targets will allow for almost 150,000 new homes over the next decade. State officials forecast that another 400,000 units will be constructed in part through a replacement of the so-called 421-a tax break, which incentivizes the construction of apartment buildings with some affordable units earmarked to those earning lower incomes.

Ms. Hochul’s proposals incorporate many of the goals of an ascendant pro-housing movement in New York, but could prove difficult to muscle through the Legislature, where they will likely draw fierce resistance from local officials, who helped torpedo some similar proposals last session. The push for a new tax exemption could also meet resistance from her party’s left wing.

In the coming weeks, Ms. Hochul will release her state budget proposal, which will outline how much the governor’s plans will cost and how she intends to pay for them. She will then have until April 1 to negotiate the state budget with Democratic lawmakers, a typically tense, back-room process of deal making where most of Albany’s policy battles are waged.

This year, the governor, who has pursued a more collaborative relationship with lawmakers than her predecessor, Andrew M. Cuomo, will head into the negotiations at odds with Democrats in the State Senate. Democrats in the upper chamber have mounted a surprisingly forceful opposition to Ms. Hochul’s nominee for chief judge of the state’s highest court, raising the specter of a chaotic confirmation clash later this month.

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