Walsh Calls For Changes to Flawed Budget Process

A statement from Assemblywoman Mary Beth Walsh (R,C,I,Ref-Ballston)

“Tonight, while the vast majority of New York’s families lay asleep in their beds, overtired lawmakers passed a state budget that dictated the appropriation of $168 billion of your hard-earned tax dollars.

“Most of the bills that comprised this year’s state budget were introduced by the governor with a message of necessity, bypassing the mandatory aging period that exists to ensure your elected officials have time to thoroughly read and understand the contents of these bills. As a result, lawmakers were forced to vote on thousands of pages of legislation that, in many cases, they had seen for the first time mere minutes before the bills were brought to the floor.

“To say I am disappointed by this stunning disregard of transparency, citizen oversight and accountability would be a gross understatement. Our state’s budget negotiation is a profoundly flawed process, and in no way resembles an acceptable manner to pass legislation that will directly affect nearly 20 million of our state’s residents.

“As a member of the State Assembly, I believe passing New York’s budget to be one of, if not the most important action we take each year as a legislative body, and moving forward I will continue working to ensure these negotiations are conducted in a more efficient and responsible manner. What we’ve seen in Albany this week is unacceptable and New Yorkers deserve better from their state’s leadership.”