The State of New York, as part of its COVID-19 response, overproduced hand sanitizer by hundreds of thousands of gallons, costing the state taxpayer close to $10 million.
Under the leadership of former Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo, New York spent over $4 million in taxpayer funds to produce the 700,000 gallons of hand sanitizer that were never used, WRGB News reported. The massive amount of product was abandoned by the state until criticism forced New York to send it to a local recycling facility, adding millions more to the cost of the abandoned stockpile, according to the report.
The 168 trailer loads of sanitizer were left on a runway at the New York State Disaster Preparedness Center in Oriskany, New York, for months before the state reported that Eastman Kodak would transport and recycle the leftover product, according to WRGB News. (RELATED: New York City Has Completely Failed To Recover From The Pandemic)
On top of the $4.3 million New York paid to produce the unneeded hand sanitizer, the state has agreed to pay Eastman Kodak $2.32 million to transport and extract the recyclable component of the cleanser, the outlet reported.
Will take months and millions to recycle abandoned stash of hand sanitizer https://t.co/TrwuVMCnrP
— CBS 6 Albany – WRGB (@CBS6Albany) September 21, 2022
It will take the Eastman Kodak company around 44 weeks to ship the hand sanitizer to its Eastman Business Park in Rochester, New York, and remove the isopropyl alcohol, which can be used in manufacturing, reported WRGB News.
“This is a classic example not just of government, but really of governor malpractice and a lack of transparency,” Republican New York state Sen. Jim Tedisco told WRGB News when the cache of hand sanitizer was uncovered. Democratic New York state Assemblywoman Marianne Buttenschon said the situation was “very concerning,” the outlet reported.