NEW YORK - Public Advocate Jumaane Williams says he plans to block the city's budget as it insufficiently defunds the New York City Police Department.
During an interview on "Mornings On 1," Williams said the budget voted on late Tuesday night did not go far enough to defund the police.
Williams says he plans to invoke an often-overlooked section of the city charter that would allow him to prevent the execution of the budget.
"The charter is abundantly clear that the public advocate has to sign the tax forms that allows the city to collect the taxes. In fact, soon after the budget passed, that tax form was sent to me and I won't be signing it," Williams said.
Williams adds that it is up to Mayor Bill de Blasio on what happens next.
He says he has laid out a clear plan on what defunding the police really looks like, but so far the mayor has ignored it. Meanwhile, protesters continue to camp out at City Hall demanding proper defunding of the police.
But Mayor de Blasio responded to Williams' remarks, saying the public advocate does not have such power to block the budget.
“I was public advocate. I know the law. That’s just a misinterpretation of the law. The law department feels that strongly. I know the City Council feels that strongly,” the mayor said in a briefing.
The mayor says regardless of Williams' approval, the city will move forward with its plan.
"I don’t think anyone’s going to say the city clerk can shut down the New York City government and shut down our budget, and nor can the public advocate. So we’re going to move forward,” said de Blasio.