The Budget Hole Gets Deeper
June 4th, 2010
Ray Katz filed this post.
Members of New York’s congressional delegation met yesterday afternoon at Gracie Mansion with Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Gov. David Paterson to discuss the city’s ongoing budget woes, which now threaten to balloon to even greater proportions,
The House version of a $113 billion measure that, among other things, extends unemployment insurance, passed last week without federally mandated funds that go to help states pay Medicaid costs, money known as FMAP. The Senate version of the bill didn’t pass at all. Bloomberg said the lack of the fund would cost the city $600 million; Paterson said it would increase the state deficit by an additional billion dollars, bringing the total to $10.2 billion.
Bloomberg added that dropping the $600 million from the budget would translate into the elimination of roughly 10,000 jobs.
Also present were City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, and Senate Majority Leader John Sampson.
Quinn emphasized that the federal funds, which were expected to come through, had already been included in the mayor’s budget. Their elimination would mean additional cuts for the city, she said. “It’s a big number on top of already big numbers.”
Lawmakers said that they plan to schedule a meeting with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi next week in Washington and will push for the funds, despite the reluctance of many members of Congress to spend more federal money.
“FMAP affects everything,” said Silver, citing firehouses, senior centers and the police department as institutions that benefit from the crucial funds.
The deadline for New York City’s budget is June 28. It will be passed on time, the mayor said—with or without the $600 million.By Gail Robinson on June 4, 2010, 2:05 pm
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