ALBANY, 01/22/13 – State Senator James L. Seward (R/C/I-Oneonta) today commented on Governor Cuomo’s budget proposal:
“Fiscal responsibility has been a key phrase in Albany over the last two years and this year’s budget proposal from the governor appears to maintain that goal. Overall, I was pleased with the spending plan which offers a sound baseline to build on as we embark on budget negotiations.
“Upstate New York’s needs were front and center and I look forward to working with the governor to ensure that vital programs backing agriculture, tourism and small business are part of the final budget. I will also be fighting to ensure that my senate district will be a front runner for the innovation hotspots geared at maximizing knowledge-based commerce.
“Additional funding for schools was also included – a major plus. Now the key is to direct the bulk of the new money to the neediest districts. Boosting overall aid is helpful, however, the real key is correcting the distribution formula.
“The governor also presented a strategy to assist local governments. While the mandate relief proposals, like capping pension costs, are a start, more attention needs to be focused on this area to truly help local governments as they struggle to make ends meet and keep property taxes down.
“The governor’s budget proposal hit on many of the right themes, including no new taxes or fees. Now, as we fine-tune the spending plan, and work toward a third straight on-time budget, I will be focusing on items that will generate a healthier economy and help our state tap its full potential.”