Brian Benjamin outlines his initial responsibilities as Lieutenant Governor

State News

State Sen. Brian Benjamin embraces Gov. Kathy Hochul during an event in the Harlem neighborhood of New York, Thursday, Aug. 26, 2021, in New York. Hochul has selected Benjamin as her choice for lieutenant governor. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer)

ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) – New York State officially has a new Lieutenant Governor. State Senator Brian Benjamin was sworn in for the role this morning in New York City.

Benjamin was joined by his family as he took the oath of office. The Democrat from Harlem says he’s eager to work with Governor Kathy Hochul.

“You asking me to join the administration is making abundantly clear that you want Upstate and Downstate, every ethnicity, every culture to feel included,” Benjamin said.

He says the Governor has already asked him to get to work on a few issues. 

First, he says he’ll be working to get more people vaccinated. “She wants to make sure that I am part of the team that goes around the state to make sure that people know that the vaccine is the answer,” Benjamin said.

Second, he says he plans to get the word out about Emergency Rental Assistance Program funding. He says New York has received $2.7 billion, but only $300 million has gone out. “We want to make sure that that number is ramped up much quicker and I will work diligently with our Governor to do so,” Benjamin said.

His third responsibility will be leading the New York City Housing Authority Task Force.

Benjamin also says he plans to run as Hochul’s running mate in the upcoming 2022 gubernatorial election. 

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