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Statement From Senate Majority Leader John J. Flanagan

John J. Flanagan

March 22, 2018

Today, the Senate acted on the state’s Debt Service bill (S.7502), and, with it, has begun passage of the 2018-19 state budget.

While we have more work to do to finalize the enacted budget by next week's deadline, I believe we have made real progress toward completion of a new state budget that promotes affordability, opportunity, and security - - the three principles that have guided the members of our Senate Republican Majority throughout this process.

Our conference is working to balance the budget without imposing new taxes that will hurt our economy and make New York less affordable.  We are also working to double the size of the property tax rebate checks, ensure middle class income tax relief is delivered on time and as promised, and protect New Yorkers from the potential negative impacts of recent federal tax changes.

I know our new budget will provide record funding for education, and that aid to local schools will grow at a faster rate than any other area of the budget so students continue to have the resources they need to learn and to succeed.

We will also make hundreds of millions of dollars in new capital funding available to strengthen health care, while protecting hospitals, nursing homes, and community health programs from proposed cuts.

And, we will provide the highest level of funding in history to address women's health, fight heroin and opioid abuse, and combat Lyme disease.

We’ve held approximately 100 hours of public budget hearings on the Executive Budget proposal.  We’ve listened intently to the concerns and the issues raised by hardworking taxpayers across this state, and we are closing in on a final budget that reflects their priorities.  Now, we must finish the job.