Albany, N.Y., February 1—State Senator Tom O’Mara (R-C, Big Flats) said today that Governor Andrew Cuomo’s proposed 2011-2012 state budget contains several key, core proposals that, if enacted, “would finally put in place the building blocks of a long-overdue strategy to get us out from under America’s highest tax burden, create more cost-effective government across the board, and open the door to sustained private-sector job growth.”
Earlier today in Albany Cuomo unveiled a $132.9-billion state budget plan that proposes a 2.7-percent overall reduction in total state spending and calls for a comprehensive realignment and revamping of many state programs and services. The governor described the state as “functionally bankrupt” and “economically uncompetitive,” saying that it’s time for a restructuring of New York State government in all areas.
O’Mara welcomed the governor’s support for initiatives to exert long-term control over future state spending, as well as to redesign the state’s system of Medicaid and reduce its cost. He also favors Cuomo’s emphasis on providing local governments with relief from state mandates.
“It’s going to be hard and it’s going to be painful, but it’s time to restore some economic and fiscal sanity to New York government. Albany has a record of being very good at talking about proposal after proposal for reform and upstate economic growth, but now we need action after action to make it happen. We need to stay focused on finding the way toward significant breakthroughs and a true turnaround,” said O’Mara, who welcomed Cuomo’s overall emphasis on what O’Mara sees as the key issues that must be tackled in the new state budget: streamlining the state bureaucracy and reducing spending, property tax relief and tax incentives aimed at encouraging private-sector job growth, and mandate relief to further ease the budget constraints facing local governments.
“One thing we can’t and won’t stand for is another tax-and-spend budget like the ones enacted over the past two years,” O’Mara said. “At its core, Governor Cuomo’s budget proposal at least sets the course for a solid start in key new directions. Less state spending, no borrowing, and no new taxes are good starting points for getting this state back on the right track.”
O’Mara said that the next step is for legislators, local leaders, and the public to begin analyzing the details of the Cuomo plan and assessing its impact on specific programs and services. He encouraged local leaders and residents to share their reaction .
Participate in O'Mara's online poll  to share your view of the overall direction of the Cuomo plan.
“I expect to hear directly from this region’s local leaders and concerned citizens, and I encourage and welcome their input. The next step in this process is to carefully and deliberately explore the local impact of Governor Cuomo’s plan,” said O’Mara, whose 53rd District includes all of Chemung, Schuyler, Steuben and Yates counties, and part of Tompkins County (the city of Ithaca, and the towns of Enfield, Ithaca, Newfield, and Ulysses).