A Budget Deal That Doesn't Make Paterson Happy
November 30th, 2009
Legislators say they have been told a deal has been reached and that Gov. David Paterson has accepted a $2.8 billion package to reduce the budget deficit. After over a month of stop-and start-negotiations, a vote is expected to take place as early as noon tomorrow — but not everything is peachy keen.
Paterson released a statement saying the legislature’s latest budget offer, “…does not take sufficient action to restore New York State’s long-term fiscal stability and does nowhere near enough to address next year’s budget deficit.”
Legislators say that Paterson is playing the budget deal in such a way that he is able to beat up on them to boost his approval ratings.
The statement from Paterson’s office says the “…$2.8 billion plan presented by the Legislature includes $1.6 billion in executive actions already taken by Governor Paterson; $391 million in a spin-up of federal education aid; and $250 million in a tax amnesty program – meaning only $600-$700 million in real spending reductions have been agreed to by the Legislature.”
Paterson declared that he welcomes “…the Legislature’s $600-$700 million in cuts,” but he intends “…to go much further. In the face of this historic economic crisis, we need to do more to put New York State on the path to economic recovery.”
As a result Paterson has ordered his budget director to withhold certification of local assistance payments to make sure the state will have enough money to meet its financial obligations. It isn’t clear how much the governor intends to withhold. Legislators insist Paterson doesn’t have the authority to do this.
On top of a vote on a deficit-reduction package, there is talk that that a same-sex marriage bill may actually come to a vote in the Senate tomorrow.By David King on November 30, 2009, 9:40 pm
In category: Albany, Eye on Albany | No Comments »