A conservative group based in Albany, known as the Government Justice Center has filed suit to block planned raises for state lawmakers.
Earlier this week, a committee created by Governor Cuomo and the legislature recommended a significant pay hike for state lawmakers. But it came with strings attached, including strict limits on how much outside income legislators can make.
Cuomo called into a radio show Friday morning to weigh in.
"I believe the law is going to be upheld, but I believe the rhetoric made the lawsuit more problematic. And if the lawsuit were successful they would lose the raise and everything."
This week, Democrats in the Assembly met in Albany. Sources say close to half the members complained about the committee's pay raise, which automatically becomes law unless the legislature stops it.
"The Assembly has always been open to discussing the concerns on the outside income, but they arbitrarily decided upon themselves even when they acknowledged that they had questionable authority to do these things. They still did it. And really just put probably the legislature's salary in jeopardy," Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie said.
The compensation committee also voted to curtail stipends for committee chairs and other leadership posts. That comes on top of the outside income ban.
"The ban is more of a Republican problem. Because they have more, proportionately, Senators. The Assembly has some people who make outside income, but it's not as big a problem. They don't like losing the lulu's which is a way of control of the leadership," Cuomo added.
The fight over the pay raise has led to some serious tensions between the legislators and the Governor as they gear up for the new legislative session, which begins next month.
On Monday Governor Cuomo plans to outline his agenda in a speech, perhaps to get ahead of the legislature which may pass bills without his input.
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