AARP Praises State of State Telehealth & High Speed Internet Expansion, Rent Protection Proposals

By AARP NY | January 11, 2021

Also Lauds Governor Cuomo for Utility Shutoff Moratorium Plan

ALBANY, N.Y. – AARP New York State Director Beth Finkel issued the following statement today in response to Governor Andrew Cuomo’s 2021 State of the State address:

“AARP New York is encouraged by Governor Cuomo’s proposals to expand telehealth as well as accessible and affordable high-speed internet.

“We applaud the Governor for proposing to protect renters economically harmed by the pandemic by prohibiting penalties and late charges on past rent.

“And we support his previously announced State of the State plan to introduce legislation creating a continuing automatic moratorium on utility shutoffs in regions under a state of emergency.

“These proposals would all protect the health, safety and well-being of New Yorkers during one of the most challenging times in our history.

“Expanding telehealth will in many instances make it safer and easier for New Yorkers to see healthcare providers without the cost, difficulty and time – and the potential danger during this pandemic – of traveling to medical offices.

“AARP New York has been urging the State for months to expand the availability of affordable high-speed internet, which has become so critical for everything from working from home to shopping for food to ensuring children and grandchildren can “attend” school. We are encouraged by the Governor’s proposal, and we agree with him that high-speed internet “discriminates by race & income” – as a recent statewide AARP voter survey showed.

“We are especially pleased that the Governor’s proposed utility shutoff moratorium would apply to internet services, as well as electric, gas, water, telecommunications and cable.

“And we have been fighting since the onset of the pandemic to ensure New Yorkers don’t lose their homes through no fault of their own.

“We look forward to seeing the details of these proposals, and to working with the Governor and state Legislature to ensure they are robust – and enacted.”

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AARP is the nation’s largest nonprofit, nonpartisan organization dedicated to empowering Americans 50 and older to choose how they live as they age. With nearly 38 million members and offices in every state, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands, AARP works to strengthen communities and advocate for what matters most to families with a focus on health security, financial stability and personal fulfillment. AARP also works for individuals in the marketplace by sparking new solutions and allowing carefully chosen, high-quality products and services to carry the AARP name.  As a trusted source for news and information, AARP produces the world’s largest circulation publications, AARP The Magazine and AARP Bulletin. To learn more, visit or follow @AARP and @AARPadvocates on social media.