In This Section

Without Serious Action for Climate and Workers, Hochul’s Budget Checklist Remains Incomplete

ALBANY, NY (April 15, 2024) – In response to Governor Hochul’s conceptual FY2025 budget agreement, ALIGN released the following statement:

“Without serious action for climate and worker justice, Governor Hochul’s budget checklist remains incomplete,” said Theodore A. Moore, ALIGN Executive Director. “Investments in environmental conservation are commendable, but they will be meaningless without significant efforts to prioritize a just transition away from fossil fuels. We need urgent legislation like the NY HEAT and Climate Change Superfund Acts in full and at least $1 billion for resiliency projects in the final budget to meet New York’s own climate mandates and create green union jobs. And for workers, much was left off the list entirely: a fair minimum wage for people living upstate, guaranteed cost-of-living raises, and protections for warehouse workers facing a nation-leading injury crisis. These are not issues to be erased; this is a matter of survival for millions of workers who are disproportionately Black and brown New Yorkers. ALIGN will continue to work with Governor Hochul and our legislative leaders to prioritize New Yorkers’ safety and livelihoods in the final budget.” 



    • Warehouse Worker Injury Reduction Act (S5081/A8907)
      • 1 in 11 New York warehouse workers are injured annually—four times more often than in any other industry in the state and at a rate 54% higher than the national average
      • Calling for $5 million to implement legislation requiring annual expert evaluation of large warehouses for potential injury risk and establishment of consistent safety standards across the industry. Also mandates better job design, effective worker training, and improved on-site medical care.
    • Upstate Parity and Minimum Wage Protection Act (S8154/A9093)
      • The MIT Living Wage calculator shows a living wage in New York state is $26/hr
      • Bill sets a new wage floor upstate and down by establishing a statewide minimum wage of $17/hr by 2026 
      • Eliminates a loophole in the current minimum wage law that denies workers a raise when unemployment goes up.
    • NY Home Energy Affordable Transition Act (NY HEAT)  (S.2016-A/A.4592-A
      • Directs the Public Service Commission to align utility planning with mandates in NY’s Climate Law (CLCPA), lowering energy bills for low-income households, establishing an equitable transition away from gas systems, and lifting barriers to solutions like utility thermal energy networks that create good, green union jobs
    • Just Energy Transition Act (JETA) (S.2935-C/A.4866-C
      • Creates a plan to transition at least 4GW of New York’s oldest and most-polluting fossil fuel-generating facilities to renewable energy hubs by 2030. Transition projects must be completed using project labor agreements and provide retraining opportunities for impacted workers.
    • The Climate Superfund Act (S.2129-A/ A.3351-A
      • Holds New York’s worst polluters accountable, penalizing those who are financially liable for harms caused and existing environment pollution. Funds would finance infrastructure improvements, upgrade stormwater and sewage systems, and improve grid stability and public health across New York state. Projects must be completed using project labor agreements with no less than a prevailing wage and are encouraged to participate in apprenticeship programs. 

ALIGN (Alliance for a Greater New York) brings together labor, climate, and community organizations for a more just, sustainable New York. Working at the intersection of economic and climate justice, ALIGN builds coalitions with those most impacted and uplifts worker and community voices to fight for dignity in the workplace and a just path to a renewable energy economy for all. Read more about ALIGN’s 2024 Labor & Climate Agenda