Albany Lawmaker Wants to Split New York in Two, I’m here to Ask: Why Stop There?

(The Record) – In New York state government news, the topic of splitting the state into separate upstate and downstate entities has popped up again at the Capitol.

A lawmaker representing a suburban-rural district in eastern New York this week proposed legislation that would authorize a study into the up-front and long-term costs of separating the upstate and downstate regions into two states, along with the legal implications and economic impact.

The idea of splitting upstate New York and the New York City metro area into two separate states comes up periodically in Albany, never getting beyond the proposal stage. Republican state Sen. Daphne Jordan says it’s time to at least examine what a split would look like and cost…Ultimately, it would take an act of Congress to split New York into two states.

Jordan’s measure defines downstate as all five New York City boroughs, Long Island’s Nassau and Suffolk counties, and Westchester and Rockland counties. The state’s 53 other counties would be considered upstate.

I’ve grown up with an Adirondack lake house and have had the experience of working in midtown Manhattan during numerous school breaks, the dichotomy of our state as it stands amazes me. Walk 5 minutes down 7th Avenue in New York City, then do the same in Saranac Lake. You’re telling me those 2 places are governed by the same state government?

Without knowing any of the economic, political, or social ramifications of splitting our state in 2, I’m in a good spot to comment on this. I’m 100% on board with at least looking into this split.

There’s a few cons: our favorite argument “where does upstate start?” debate would be put to rest, and we’d have to hear Westchester county folks refer to themselves as “upstaters”, and technically be correct. But we can get over that.

I’m going to this idea a state further. My home state of New Jersey doesn’t need to exist. I grew up right on the dividing line of North and South Jersey and as sad as I would be to see it go, it would make much more sense socioeconomically.

North Jersey is crazy over-populated and reaps the wealth-benefits of it’s proximity to the city. Lump that Northern half right into the new Downstate New York.

South Jersey is far more rural and disgustingly full of Eagles fans. I’d lose no sleep over donating that half to Pennsylvania. You know what? Just call the whole damn thing Philadelphia and be done with it.

So here’s what we’re looking at:


Still 50 states, just 1 less “New”-something. Plus, we’ve got a much more accommodating and indicative layout of what people really associate with.

Hand up, I have no idea what kind of political and economic consequences would happen with this restructuring of the northeast, let’s just do it and see what happens.



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