Gov. David A. Paterson, D-N.Y., has vetoed a bill to provide increased rent relief for more than 11,000 New Yorkers with HIV and AIDS.
Paterson's office announced the veto on Sunday, "saying the proposed law would strain the state's already imperiled finances because it was not clear where the money to pay for it would come from," The New York Times
reports. "Mr. Paterson said he would support the bill if the Legislature spelled out how the costs, estimated by the State Budget Division at more than $20 million, would be covered. The measure would prevent people receiving housing assistance from the city's HIV/AIDS Services Administration from having to spend more than 30 percent of their income on rent. Despite the city's current subsidy, offered under a program it pays for along with the state, many low-income participants spend more than half of their income on rent" (Cardwell, 9/17). The Wall Street Journal
: "The governor said the veto allows him to keep his promise not to impose unfunded mandates on cash-strapped municipalities and to keep the state from incurring additional financial burdens without identifying a funding source. … In New York City, more than 100,000 are living with HIV. The city has the highest AIDS-case rate in the country" (Saul, 9/20).