ALBANY, 03/27/12 -- State Senator James L. Seward (R/C/I – Oneonta) today commented on the state budget agreement:
“The announced budget agreement sets New York on course to approve an on time spending plan for a second consecutive year. More than the timeliness, the plan meets upstate needs, provides incentives for private sector job growth and closes a $3.5 billion budget gap without raising taxes.
“One item I fought hard for was funding for our rural, low-wealth school districts and additional aid was included in the final agreement. Community colleges also benefited, ensuring quality, affordable higher education for our young people.
“Vital agriculture programs will continue at my urging along with flood restoration projects, improvements for upstate roads and bridges, and state park rehabilitation. The budget also aids our senior citizens by fully restoring EPIC funding to help cover the costs of prescription drugs.
“There is also a nod to government efficiency and mandate relief through state agency consolidations and a phased state takeover over of local government Medicaid administration expenses.
“Overall, the budget agreement meets the priorities of those who live and work in the 51st senate district and continues New York’s drive toward a true economic resurgence.”