Hawley: Some Good, More Bad, But Mostly Ugly; Albany Finishes 75% of 2010-2011 State Budget

Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R, I, C – Batavia) issued the following statement today after the Assembly finished 75% of the 2010-2011 State Budget

“After more than two-and-half months, the ‘three men in a room’ today finally came to an agreement on 75% of the 2010-2011 State Budget. The good in today’s budget bills included the beginning of a process to close the $9.2 billion budget gap through consolidating state programs, while also providing $7.8 million for veterans’ services. However, it fell far short of what was needed to address the remaining budget deficit of approximately $6 billion.”

“Many of the reductions in the budget legislation were targeted at revenue-generating areas of the budget, including job-creating economic development programs and the agricultural industry. Economic development programs saw fees raised and nearly $400 million cut from funding, while the Cornell Geneva Experiment for State Seed Inspection and New York Farm Viability Institute saw their funding raided. Rather than slashing overall state spending, today’s budget bills will close some of the gap through more regulations, fees, and raiding vital state funds.”

“However, the ugliest part of today’s budget bills is the simple fact that with 75% of the budget now complete, the Assembly Majority appears unwilling to make the remaining cuts to close out the state budget gap. This will undoubtedly lead to higher taxes, or worse, more state borrowing, both of which helped put New York into this fiscal crisis. I voted no on today’s budget legislation and will continue to vote no on the remaining 2010-2011 budget bills unless needed cuts to state spending are made.”