Two weeks ago Governor Paterson delivered his speech to both houses of the legislature outlining our State’s current fiscal problem. Since then, we’ve been in session repeatedly with no bill from the Governor and no agreement on an alternative plan.
I stand ready to make the difficult choices that must be made to put our financial house in order. You are making tough decisions every day to balance your budget; the State must do the same right now.
My Republican colleagues and I have a plan. We would amend the Governor’s plan to reflect agreements that have been reached with Senate Democrats to date, as well as, other spending reductions proposed by Senate Republicans that would close the budget deficit.
The spending reductions proposed by the Governor and other savings that are acceptable to both conferences of the Senate would reduce the budget deficit by $2.6 billion. Additional spending cuts and deficit reduction actions that have been proposed by Republicans would produce approximately another $600 million in gap closing measures. Of the total savings in the Senate plan, about $1.6 billion would be recurring.
We are too close to a deal to walk away from the negotiating table. We can’t afford to wait.
I want you to know that I have a plan and I wanted you to see it. The attached file outlines the plan I am ready to vote for now. After reviewing the plan, I would value your input and suggestions.