Budget Conference Committees Start Fine-Tuning State Budget

ALBANY, 03/16/11 -- State Senator James L. Seward (R/C/I – Oneonta) has been named to two key joint budget conference committees which held their first meetings today in Albany.  Senator Seward will serve on the higher education subcommittee and the education subcommittee.

Regarding his higher education subcommittee assignment Senator Seward said:

“Our SUNY schools and community colleges are vital on two fronts – providing a quality, affordable education for our young people and driving our upstate economy.  As we develop a final state budget, I will be working to ensure our state’s higher education system will remain an attainable dream for our young people and their families and an economic engine for our region.”

Regarding his education subcommittee assignment Senator Seward said:

“The senate budget resolution approved this week already restores some funding for our most needy, rural school districts and I will fight to protect that funding.  Supplying our low wealth, upstate schools with their fair share of state dollars is vital to providing a quality education and, at the same time, keeping local property taxes in check.”

The conference committees are made up of five senators and five assemblymen tasked with negotiating budget differences between the houses, in concert with the governor, to develop a final spending plan.  The committees conduct open, public meetings which can be viewed on-line at nysenate.gov.

“The use of conference committees has helped produce an on-time budget in the past.  I am confident that a return to the process this year will lead to successful completion of a responsible spending plan by the April 1 deadline,” Seward concluded.