Assemblymember Kevin A. Cahill: Budget Reform Passes, Will Create More Efficient Budget Process for New York

July 2, 2004

Assemblymember Kevin A. Cahill (D-Ulster and Dutchess Counties) announced passage of a bill allowing historic reforms to New York’s budget process to go forward (A.11702). The Senate has also passed matching legislation (S.7615).

"The state’s budget-crafting system, designed more than 70 years ago to deal with different challenges in a different New York, has become chaotic and inefficient," Assemblymember Cahill said. "Our plan will bring transparency, accountability and efficiency to the process, and above all, will help ensure on-time budgets in the years to come."

The bipartisan budget reform plan includes moving the start of New York’s fiscal year from April 1 to May 1 to allow for better revenue and spending projections and instituting provisions to instill greater accountability in the process. If no budget is in place by May 1, the plan provides for a contingency budget equivalent to that of the preceding year.

"These reforms will help ensure fair, on-time state budgets that meet the needs of New Yorkers through better long-term and annual planning, closer oversight of spending and more public input," Mr. Cahill said.

"The Assembly and Senate’s agreement on budget reform would require a two-year appropriation for education aid," Mr. Cahill said. "This will help schools stay a step ahead by finally giving them the information they need, when they need it."

The reforms will also create a reserve fund in the state constitution to ensure sufficient monies exist for the payment of education aid in May and June of each year.

"Putting an end to the problems that have plagued our state budget for years will begin a new era of openness, accountability and timeliness," Assemblymember Cahill said. "The benefits will be felt across the state," he concluded.