ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) – The state budget is expected to be late again.
With the Legislature planning to take its Passover-Easter break through the state budget deadline on Thursday, Gov. David Paterson on Sunday took lawmakers to task and added a last-ditch effort to cap the growth of some of the nation’s highest property taxes.
Legislative leaders were scheduled to meet privately with lawmakers through Sunday evening on one of the toughest budgets Albany has ever seen. It includes some of the deepest cuts ever in school aid and other areas to contend with a fiscal crisis. But with the last public proposals more than $1 billion apart, the only firm plan for Monday was for the Senate to give final legislative approval of Paterson’s emergency bare-bones spending plan Monday, then leave Albany.
Paterson, a Democrat, said meetings on Saturday and Sunday announced by legislative leaders were “to make the public feel as if there’s more work being done than there really is.” Republican Sen. Thomas Libous, of Broome County, had said a late Friday budget meeting of legislative leaders to announce the weekend sessions was “a bluff.” Many lawmakers had already left Albany for the weekend and the start of their vacations.