National Governors Association Leadership Statement on Congressional Coronavirus Relief Negotiations

Governors Larry Hogan of Maryland, the National Governors Association chair, and Andrew Cuomo of New York, the NGA vice chair, issued the following statement about the ongoing congressional coronavirus relief negotiations:

“As leaders of states and territories, governors are battling the effects of COVID-19 on all fronts including protecting public health, assisting those struggling with unemployment, working to ensure access to education, and supporting our front-line health care workers.

“Financial aid to states is one of the most important economic tools available to the federal government. While the Senate proposal is disappointing, we continue to believe there is significant common ground for an agreement that will help state and local governments.

“Goldman Sachs analysts assert that the measures that Congress has passed to date will cover less than half the expected state shortfalls, even when combined with state rainy day funds. Moody’s Analytics has noted that without federal revenue replacement, state and local governments would need to cut more than $500 billion—shaving two full percentage points off the GDP and eliminating more than 3 million jobs.

“Nearly every category of state and local revenue is experiencing pandemic-related losses. States and localities that rely on income taxes are seeing much lower revenue due to high unemployment. Sales tax income is also declining due to the sharp drop in consumer spending and store closures. Limited travel means less revenue from gasoline taxes for transportation projects.

“We stand firm in our request for federal aid in the amount of $500 billion over the next three years. This will ensure a strong recovery for our nation. It is time for Congress to come together to help restore our nation’s health and economy.”