Cuomo last week vowed that New York would “pass the most aggressive” policing reforms in the country, and signed legislation into law.
On Monday, Cuomo tweeted that he would “sign additional police reforms” which would require police to report a weapon discharge within six hours; require police departments and courts to track arrest data, including race and ethnicity; and require police to provide medical and mental health needs of those under arrest or in custody “who require it.”
The legislation Cuomo signed last week included a statewide ban on chokeholds and an appointment of a special prosecutor to review cases of police killing unarmed individuals. The legislation also made fake race-based 911 calls a crime.
Cuomo also signed an executive order last week that withheld funds from police departments that were not directed toward reforms. The order required police departments across the state to work with communities to enact further reforms.
"I'm going to sign an executive order today that will require local governments and police departments … to develop a plan that reinvents and modernizes police strategies," Cuomo said at his daily press briefing Friday. ”That plan then has to be enacted into local law — every city, every county — it has to be done by April 1. If it's not done by April 1, and if it's not passed, they're not going to be eligible for state funding.”
Cuomo’s comments came amid protests across the nation after Floyd’s death. Some of the protests, dedicated to police brutality, shifted to a movement to “defund the police.”
What defunding the police looks like is different in various localities. In Minneapolis, the supermajority of the City Council seemingly supports a complete structural dismantling of the department. In other places, departments would remain in place but get fewer government resources, with some of their funding directed toward social justice programs.
In New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio also announced over the weekend that he will be diverting funding for the New York Police Department toward social services.
“The details will be worked out in the budget process in the weeks ahead. But, I want people to understand that we are committed to shifting resources to ensure that the focus is on our young people,” de Blasio said last week.