The fund prompted some infighting among Democrats, including some who fear that it could be used as a political wedge issue among moderate suburban voters in 2022. That concern spilled over into a public dispute between Senate supporters of the measure like Gustavo Rivera, the outspoken Bronx Democrat, who chided the Assembly on Monday for not acting faster to approve it. That led to the Assembly’s leader, Carl E. Heastie, telling Mr. Rivera, on Twitter, to “worry about your own house.”
On Tuesday, the state party chairman, Jay Jacobs, also shot back at Senator Rivera, saying that “to assume that one’s political disagreement with spending any amount of money — no less $2.1 billion — on a program to give undocumented, nontaxpaying, ‘off-the-books’ workers a humanitarian grant — is motivated by racism and not by economics is unjustified, uncalled-for, unfair and unbecoming of any public official.”
Republicans also blasted the plan for the excluded fund, with Nick Langworthy, the Republican Party chairman, calling it “woke insanity.”
“Democrats are about to pass a budget that raises taxes on New Yorkers and businesses by $4 billion while enacting a $2 billion fund that will provide $25,000 payouts to illegal immigrants,” Mr. Langworthy said on Tuesday.
The rent relief program is expected to be an urgent lifeline for low-income tenants who owe rent or are at risk of eviction because they are financially struggling as a result of the pandemic. Eligible renters would be allowed to cover up to 12 months of rent and costs of utilities, as well as three months of prospective rent, financed by federally appropriated funds.
The deal also includes $600 million in assistance for homeowners and property tax relief for New Yorkers earning under $250,000. There’s also $250 million for New York City’s struggling public housing authority and $100 million to facilitate the conversion of hotels and vacant property into affordable housing, an idea that picked up steam as much of Manhattan’s commercial districts emptied out during the pandemic.
School districts across the state are also poised to get a major infusion of cash — some $4.2 billion — over the next three years. The money will provide extra support to districts with large numbers of high-needs students and struggling schools, including New York City. The state will distribute $1.4 billion per year for the next three years, then provide $4.2 billion for schools annually, a major increase from current funding levels.