ALBANY, 05/18/10 – State Senator James L. Seward (R/C/I-Oneonta) today commented on the legislative leaders’ meeting to discuss the ongoing budget impasse:
“The leaders’ meeting to discuss budget priorities was wonderful political theatre, but unfortunately brought us no closer to passing a spending plan. It also did nothing to get construction projects moving, open the gates to our state parks, provide schools with concrete aid information, or assist upstate businesses who have seen the Power for Jobs program lapse.
“The solution to the budget stalemate is simple: follow the law and move forward immediately with public, bipartisan conference committees. The conference committee process is a proven success, and will allow for true budget negotiations. Today’s meeting did generate a tentative agreement to finally begin the process next week. I hope there are no additional setbacks. There are tough choices that need to be made, no doubt, but delaying the inevitable is only creating additional difficulties.
“Increasing Medicaid fraud detection, consolidating state agencies, capping state spending and enforcing the state law to collect cigarette and gasoline taxes on Indian reservations are just a few suggestions I have and want to see discussed.
“New York needs a balanced budget that cuts state spending, lowers property taxes, and includes business incentives to help grow our economy. I stand ready to fight for these priorities as soon as Albany leaders decide to end the political gamesmanship, follow the law and initiate public conference committees.”