ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) - About 250 protesters gathered Thursday at the Occupy Albany demonstration near the state Capitol, where activists planned to present their grievances to Gov. Andrew Cuomo's office.
Buses from Buffalo, Rochester and other Occupy Wall Street encampments from around the state delivered the protesters to downtown Lafayette Park. Members of public employee unions have joined the Occupy Albany protesters.
Demonstrators planned to deliver letters and petitions to Cuomo and the state Senate to extend New York's millionaire's tax. As the crowd formed up, some of the protesters chanted, "Andrew Cuomo you're the worst. Time to put the people first."
The Democrat-controlled Assembly has passed legislation to continue higher income taxes for New York's top earners, though Senate Republicans have opposed it and Cuomo said he is against it. Cuomo, addressing the State Democratic Committee at a suburban hotel Thursday, had no plans to meet the protesters, spokesman Josh Vlasto said.
Meanwhile, the Capitol stairway that leads to the governor's office was cordoned off early Thursday for construction. Protesters have camped in the city's Academy Park since Oct. 21. More than 60 have been arrested by state troopers when they crossed into adjacent state-owned Lafayette Park after an 11 p.m. curfew Cuomo has vowed to enforce.
Members of Occupy Buffalo and other local organizations headed to Albany as part of the National Day of Action. The group joined other occupants from Rochester and Syracuse. Two buses left Niagara Square around 6 a.m. Thursday. Their goal - to hand-deliver hundreds of petitions to Governor Andrew Cuomo calling for him to extend the so-called "millionaire's tax," which is set to expire at the end of the year.
A handful of Buffalo occupants will add an extra leg to their trip and make their way to Zuccotti Park in New York City to join Occupy Wall Street.