Senate Democrats put out a wish list of budgetary items this morning pushing for money to study the health impacts of hydrofracking, a health insurance exchange and a total state takeover of Medicaid costs.

The conference is also pushing for non-budgetary policy items in the spending plan as well, like the ballistic-identification process known as microstamping.

And the 25-member conference is also pushing for the state version of the Dream Act (Sen. Bill Perkins had attempted a hostile amendment enacting a portion of the bill late yesterday afternoon, but failed).

“Senate Democrats believe we must advocate for all New Yorkers, not just the powerful and privileged. Republicans are proposing a budget which ignores some of the most crucial issues facing this state and is completely unrealistic about others,” stated Senate Democratic Leader John L. Sampson. “After unprecedented cuts were made to critical services and programs last year we are still faced with hard choices as many New Yorkers struggle.”

Needless to say it’s unlikely these agenda items will wind up in the final spending plan due April 1.

The Democrats in the Senate, long maligned for incompetence and lacking a clear message, are uniting in part to their opposition to the Tier Six plan (though they left the chamber over redistricting when the pension bill came up for a vote).

But by opposing Tier Six at least in public allows them to shore up their support among the state’s deep-pocketed unions still smarting from their legislative defeat last week.

Senate Democrats Urge Republicans to Include Key Programs in Final Budget (1)1