Senator George Maziarz (R-C, Newfane) today released a list of new spending in the 2009-2010 state budget. The line items represent spending above and beyond Governor Paterson’s executive budget proposal, meaning they were added to the budget by the Majority conferences of the Senate and Assembly.
“It is impossible to believe anyone who says that this state budget responsibly reduced state spending,” said Senator Maziarz, who voted against all of the budget bills adopted by the Legislature in early April. “That is just not the case. My colleagues who voted for the budget claim that record deficits forced them to eliminate the STAR rebate check program and levy all kinds of new taxes and fees on families and businesses. Yet these senators, including Senator Stachowski and Senator Thompson, were complicit in adding hundreds of millions of dollars in spending to the Governor’s budget proposal.”
A list compiled by Senator Maziarz shows that legislative additions to the adopted state budget total nearly $527 million. The largest addition is $328 million in direct aid to the government of New York City. The new spending also funds a variety of organizations and programs, including legal aid societies, prisoners’ support groups, and theaters in Manhattan.
“Are these higher priorities than tax relief for upstate businesses and families?” Senator Maziarz said. “To me, absolutely not.”
“It is hypocritical to say our state revenue forecast is so bleak that we have to do away with vital mechanisms for tax relief, and then turn around and add all of this new spending to the budget,” Senator Maziarz added. “It took a special effort to get this $527 million in spending added to the Governor’s proposal. My colleagues who voted to spend this money, which primarily goes to the New York City-area, ought to be held accountable. They owe their constituents an explanation.”