Governor Andrew Cuomo came into office on January 1, 2011 with some big expectations. Elected in a landslide over Republican Carl Paladino, he made it clear during his first week in office that things would be different at the Capitol. He opened up the Capitol's Hall of Governors, which had been closed for a decade. He removed the jersey barriers around the building, a staple in prior years. He even changed the location of the annual State of the State address, something that hadn't been done since the 1920s under Gov. Al Smith. The biggest change, though, may be the amount of significant legislation that was passed during his first term in office. Cuomo campaigned on the pledges that he would seek a tougher ethics package for elected officials in Albany, pass a property tax cap and pass marriage equality. To the surprise of many longtime Capitol observers, he accomplished all of these initiatives.
There were some bumps in the road, though, including tense negotiations with the representatives of the state workers' unions and the Occupy movement that camped out across from the Capitol. Overall, though, the governor had a successful first year by most accounts. As he prepares to enter his second year in office, 'New York NOW' looks back at the year that was for Gov. Andrew Mark Cuomo in this video montage: