ALBANY, N.Y. – New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo says he wants to create a new state Office of Faith-Based Community Services.

The Democratic governor announced his plan Thursday night in Harlem during remarks to a convention of the United Missionary Baptist Association.

The agency would help religious organizations and houses of worship find grant funding. It would also help religious groups work with government agencies to coordinate social services, and work with state economic development officials to “encourage the development of faith-based businesses.”

Cuomo, a Democrat, says churches and other faith-based groups are valuable and trusted providers of community services. He says the state needs to do more for them.

The governor faces Republican Rob Astorino in next month’s election.