The following is a statement by The People’s Plan organization in New York City regarding Mayor Eric Adams’ FY25 preliminary budget.
The People’s Plan and its steering committee organizations release the following initial analysis and statements regarding Mayor Eric Adams’ FY25 preliminary budget (based on available information).
Analysis on FY24 PEGs and FY25 preliminary budget based on PEG documents:
$20M in cuts for libraries for FY24 and FY25, resulting in library closures on Sundays
Half a billion ($537M) in cuts for Department of Education (DOE) in FY24 and about $700M in cuts FY25, with 432 jobs cut, and cuts to early education and childcare seats,
$44.5M in cuts to CUNY in FY24 and about $40M in cuts for FY25
$386.5 in cuts to Department of Social Services (DSS) in FY24 and about $95M+ in cuts for FY25, despite downward trends in the city’s processing of SNAP benefits and housing vouchers
For housing departments HPD and DOB, a combined $62.2M in cuts in FY24 and $147M in cuts in FY25, despite slowdowns in affordable housing construction completion and housing code enforcement
659 city jobs eliminated in Parks, as the department struggles to keep up with performance on managing the City’s public green spaces and providing recreation
“It is clear that Mayor Adams is losing his ability to govern this city,” said Zara Nasir, Executive Director of The People’s Plan. “Every day New Yorkers wake up to a new story about Mayor Adams’ budget rollercoaster and what essential services might or might not exist in a few months. The only constant under this administration is that the needs of poor and working class New Yorkers will always take a back seat to the interests of Mayor Adams’ big donors.”
“We remain deeply disappointed in Mayor Adams for failing to support CUNY. Mayor Adams has turned his back on his alma mater and has given New Yorkers no reason to expect better from him in his Preliminary Budget. Why can’t this Mayor recognize that an investment in CUNY is an investment in the future workforce of New York? The Mayor has the money to reverse his cuts to CUNY, as he’s done for the NYPD and other agencies. We are counting on the City Council to continue to oppose the Mayor’s needless cuts to CUNY,” said James Davis, President, Professional Staff Congress (PSC-CUNY).
“The Mayor’s self-created budget crisis has left New Yorkers to worry whether their kids will still be able to attend after-school programs or visit their neighborhood libraries on the weekend. It’s left families to wonder whether their parks will be maintained and their garbage cans emptied,” said Ana María Archila and Jasmine Gripper, Co-Directors of the New York Working Families Party. “New Yorkers deserve a budget that invests in our families and communities, and we plan to work with our leaders in the New York City Council to deliver just that.”
“It’s Groundhog Day at City Hall. Right on cue, the Mayor has continued his tradition of making ruthless and devastating cuts to critical services and programs for New Yorkers, while preserving his bloated NYPD budget. Communities are exhausted by this Mayor’s irresponsible austerity approach, which will only weaken our economy in the long term and which he persists in despite record reserve funding of over $8 billion dollars, record state funding for education, and surplus city revenue that can ensure a balanced budget without drastic cuts. This is not fiscal discipline, it’s cruelty, and we will continue to fight back on behalf of all New Yorkers,” said Amshula Jayaram, Campaign Director, Alliance for Quality Education.
“Mayor Adams’ intentional mismanagement of our city, and practice of threatening, reversing, and enacting budget cuts create a climate of constant instability and uncertainty,” said Audrey Sasson, Executive Director of Jews For Racial & Economic Justice (JFREJ). “The only thing that remains consistent is the serious, lasting, and extremely harmful impact the mayor’s policy choices have on the most vulnerable among us, and on the future of our beloved city.”
“New Yorkers refuse to accept more harmful budget cuts from a corrupt and incompetent administration that is causing working people to flee the city, while more and more millionaires make our home their playground,” said Eric Thor, co-chair of NYC-DSA. “Every budget announcement from this mayor has brought chaos and cuts to our libraries, schools, sanitation, and other essential services while the NYPD’s more than $10 billion budget dwarfs the military spending of most countries. Enough is enough. We call on the City Council to stand up to this administration and fight to restore all cuts while making the much needed investments in housing, childcare, education, and public infrastructure that working New Yorkers deserve.”
“Mayor Eric Adams must be in over his head, he has to be. It makes zero sense how he can consistently be so off with his budget projections year after year, with social services, libraries and CUNY always first on the chopping block to balance the budget. He yells from the treetops about the cost of caring for asylum seekers to anyone who will listen, yet with his poll numbers dropping and his legal issues increasing, it suddenly doesn’t cost as much to house our brothers and sisters from the global south anymore. Two full years as Mayor, and two full years of Eric Adams finding excuses to raise our rents and cut budgets to our social services. Eric Adams either doesn’t know what he’s doing, or he knows exactly what he’s doing- either way Eric Adams is the real Public Safety threat to New York City,” said James Inniss Public Safety Campaigner New York Communities for Change.
This is the sixth round of cuts enacted by the Mayor in two years since taking office in 2022. Performance and Management Reports released in September show that essential services are already downgraded; from fire and emergency response to SNAP and housing assistance. While the Mayor announced some restorations in the past week to Parks, DSNY, and DOE, new and old cuts will still impact or cut libraries, schools, childcare, CUNY, and parks, among many other programs and essential services. This comes right after the Mayor announced his reinstatement of the April 2024 academy class of 600 police officers, allowing NYPD to escape further PEGs while reversing past cuts, and doing nothing to address wasteful NYPD overtime.
Governmental and independent budget watchdogs have pointed to a number of strategies for managing the city’s fiscal issues without requiring severe cuts, including curtailing NYPD and uniformed overtime, undoing the hiring freeze at revenue generating agencies, and using some of the city’s $9B reserve fund.
In addition, the Independent Budget Office (IBO) reported that the administration had overstated asylum-seeker costs by up to $1.6B dollars, and the Fiscal Policy Institute (FPI) has stated that the Mayor has “significantly overstates the fiscal impact of migrant arrivals,” naming that proposed budget cuts of $10 billion per year are “billions of dollars higher than the increased cost estimates for asylum seekers.” Mayor Adams continues to lead budget conversations overemphasizing the cost of support for asylum seekers, despite new money pledged by New York State.
The Mayor’s cuts come at a time of growing investigations by the FBI and the Manhattan DA into corruption in the Adams administration and a record low public approval rating. Mayor Adams’ cuts also come at a time where his budget office is reporting more than previously expected revenue in the city budget and $8.2 billion in reserves.
The People’s Plan is a collective vision for a City that provides dignity, care, and justice for all New Yorkers. It offers the priorities of hundreds of organizers and advocates through a comprehensive, multi-issue roadmap around housing, anti-criminalization, education, economy, climate, transit, and health. The intent of The People’s Plan is to set the agenda for a racially and socially just city and provide a clear people-centered mandate for 2024 and beyond.