© 2024 Western New York Public Broadcasting Association

140 Lower Terrace
Buffalo, NY 14202

Mailing Address:
Horizons Plaza P.O. Box 1263
Buffalo, NY 14240-1263

Buffalo Toronto Public Media | Phone 716-845-7000
WBFO Newsroom | Phone: 716-845-7040
Your NPR Station
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

State Legislature and Governor Agree on Spending Cuts

By Mark Scott

Albany, NY – The State Assembly wrapped up their budget-cutting work early Wednesday morning. Their counterparts in the Senate did so shortly before noon.

Lawmakers and Governor David Paterson agreed to slash more than $400 million from the current state budget and $1.7 billion over the next two fiscal years.

Paterson called the special session to deal with looming budget deficits.

At a news conference in Albany Wednesday, Paterson said $127 million in Medicaid spending and $182 million in local spending were cut from the budget, plus another $50 million in so-called pork barrel grants.

Paterson said the winds of change have come to Albany.

"We have never cut this much out of a budget without taxing," Paterson said. "We have never gone into the budget and made these types of cuts in an election year."

Paterson had requested property tax relief by capping school tax increases, but lawmakers apparently have bowed to the state's teachers union, which opposed the plan. The Governor did say he will continue to push his cap proposal in meetings with legislative leaders this fall.

Paterson said he is cautiously optimistic the cuts will be enough to get New York through until the next budget.