Local Lawmakers React To Governor Cuomo’s 2013-2014 Budget Proposal
Albany, NY (WIBX) – Local legislators in the State Assembly and Senate are generally pleased with Governor Andrew Cuomo’s 2013-2014 budget proposal.
Assemblyman Anthony Brindisi says the governor offered a positive outline for this year’s budget, while attempting to stabilize New York’s fiscal standing.
“It’s a bold agenda, but if anyone can do it, he can,” Brindisi said. “He’s shown over the last two years that he’s a strong leader and he has a legislature that wants to work with him, no matter what side of the aisle you’re on.”
State Senator Joe Griffo agreed, saying the proposal was impressive.
“The fact that he is presenting a balanced budget… that continues to be mindful of the 2 percent spending cap, that he has avoided any new taxes or fees, and that he has taken on the $1.3 billion dollar deficit and will erase that through internal action [is great].”
State Senator James Seward also liked parts of the plan, but said the proposal needed to place more focus on mandate relief.
“While the mandate relief proposals, like capping pension costs, are a start, more attention needs to be focused on this area to truly help local governments as they struggle to make ends meet and keep property taxes down,” Seward said.
All three were also pleased to hear more money would be awarded to schools, but each expressed concerns about the current distribution formula. Griffo said more money needs to make its way to low wealth-high need districts, especially those in rural areas.
The governor’s 2013-2014 budget totals $135 billion, and is less than two percent more than last year’s. It also closes a more than $1.35 billion dollar state deficit.
If passed, this will be the third year in a row the New York Legislature will have passed a budget before the April 1st deadline.