ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Monday said he would decide whether New York should allow hydraulic fracturing for natural gas by Election Day next year — maybe.
Cuomo also cautioned that he doesn’t want even that ballpark estimate to pressure his staff into a hasty recommendation to lift or make permanent a 2008 moratorium on the “fracking” drilling method to tap gas deep in shale deposits.
The thorny political decision will impact Cuomo’s re-election campaign next year and potentially his chances in 2016 should he choose to run for president.
“It’s one of the most important decisions I think we will make as a government with far-reaching consequences,” Cuomo said. “It’s more important to be right than fast.”
Yet Cuomo held the news conference Monday and ticked off his fast-tracked accomplishments in three years in office which often defied several years or even decades of indecision. They include replacement of the $3.9 billion Tappan Zee Bridge in New York City’s northern suburbs, creation of teacher evaluations in every public school, three state budgets passed on time with spending increases of 2 percent or less, and a higher minimum wage.
“I think they are totally apples and oranges,” Cuomo said. “When it’s appropriate to move fast, we move fast.”