Budget Resolution Approved in Senate
March 22nd, 2010
The senate approved a budget resolution along party lines. Things got a little heated in the chamber as Republicans bemoaned what they said was a rushed process. The Assembly will now put forward their own resolution and the two versions will be reconciled in conference committees.
“Their final budget resolution was given to us just hours ago and they intend to bring it up for a vote today,” said Senate Minority Leader Dean Skelos in a statement. ” Itís clear they do not want a thorough review of the plan because even a cursory review shows that their priorities are wrong, and their numbers donít add up.” Skelos
Skelos also complained the resolution does not include a spending cap.
Senate Majority Conference Leader John Sampson defended the resolution before it came to a vote, saying it is, “Just a road map for us to work together.”
Sampson attacked the spending habits of Republicans during previous decades saying they never worked under a spending cap when they were in the majority.† Sampson then said the voters don’t care about the past before returning to a bipartisan message saying, “This is a budget we all need to own.”
Sampson also seemingly took a shot at Lt. Gov. Richard Ravitch’s fiscal plan, saying that a vote against the budget resolution would be saying no, “to our rejection of borrowing.” In the past few days Democrats who initially favored Ravitch plan have indicated they think it is no longer necessary. “We’ve found enough one shots,” one legislator explained.
Here is the statement from Skelos.
“Last year, Senate Democrats arrogantly prepared a budget in complete secrecy, with no time for public review and scrutiny and little time for questions and debate. This year, they did it again.
Their final budget resolution was given to us just hours ago and they intend to bring it up for a vote today. Itís clear they do not want a thorough review of the plan because even a cursory review shows that their priorities are wrong, and their numbers donít add up.
The Democrats $135 billion budget increases spending without a way to pay for it. There are no structural reforms or long-term fixes to the stateís fiscal problems. It doesnít do enough to provide property tax relief, does nothing to create jobs and will guarantee that next yearís budget deficit will be $3 billion greater than projected.
Their budget does not include a cap on state spending or local school taxes. They add $1.5 billion in new spending that was not in the Governorís original budget. They increase spending on welfare and expand eligibility to include more people, rather than restoring the STAR property tax rebate check for all homeowners or providing other tax relief. They propose to increase Medicaid fraud recoveries by tying the hands of the Medicaid Inspector General to make it more difficult to fight fraud.
And to pay for it all, they are proposing billions of dollars in risky gimmicks, questionable tax collections and other fiscal sleight-of-hand tricks.
Senate Democrats are even trying to legalize marijuana for medical purposes through the budget, just like they did last when they gutted the stateís drug laws under the cover of a state budget. And, incredibly, they even put a not-for-profit prisonersí rights group in charge of the stateís juvenile justice system.
With all the spending and fiscal gimmickry, the Democratsí budget includes nothing to create new private sector jobs.
Add in the secretive, arrogant process that produced this resolution, the lack of time for scrutiny and review and the restrictive limits on debate and discussion, and we have no choice but to vote against this plan.”By David King on March 22, 2010, 5:12 pm
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