Cuomo Sends Up His First Budget Extender
In an effort to avert a shutdown of New York’s state government, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced late Sunday evening he would introduce a temporary budget extender that would fund the government until May 31.
The move came amid a legislative impasse this weekend over raising the age of criminal responsibility in New York to 18 – a measure that stymied the Legislature to reaching a broader agreement on the final 2017-18 budget.
The extender legislation will not include that measure, even after Democrats threatened to not back a budget without an agreement on the policy in place.
“The Legislature has not been able to reach total agreement on all issues necessary for a complete annual agenda. Raise the Age and affordable housing are especially controversial politically, but necessary governmentally,” Cuomo said in a statement. “I will not accept ‘half a loaf’ on these issues.”
Cuomo on Friday announced the weekend would be a “grace period” for the Legislature to reach a deal after the state budget officially expired when the midnight, April 1 deadline passed without a deal.
“I said that I would allow the weekend for a grace period. Given the inability of both houses to reach an agreement, I am sending up an extender of the current budget to keep the government fully functioning until May 31,” Cuomo said at the time.
“I have spoken to both leaders who have agreed to pass the extender bill by tomorrow afternoon, which is the necessary deadline to keep government fully functioning.”
The Democratic-led Assembly, which left the state Capitol Sunday night, plans to return on Monday morning.
Lawmakers will have their pay temporarily withheld under an extender budget thanks to a deal struck long ago between then-legislative leaders and Republican Gov. George Pataki. It’s unclear how much time lawmakers will have to pass the extender bill, but one source said the bills are due by Monday afternoon at the earliest.
“The Assembly continues to work to come to an agreement on budget for the 2017-18 fiscal year. We are having productive talks with our partners in government and will be working hard through the night to resolve the remaining issues,” said Speaker Carl Heastie.
“The Assembly is prepared to pass a temporary budget extender should one be necessary to avoid a shutdown of government while we resolve these issues.”
The governor released a lengthy statement blasting the proposed cuts by Republicans in the federal government, saying that has made for “difficult and unusual times” in New York and in the United States.
Cuomo took office by railing in part against the state’s chronically late budgets, saying it was a symbol of the state’s dysfunction. He has made it a hallmark of his tenure in office to work across the aisle with Senate Republicans to keep state government from falling into the same disarray as Congress has in recent years.
But the contentiousness of the issue of raise the age, along with the increasingly personal animosity some lawmakers hold for Cuomo thanks to a range of issues, not the least of which was the failure to get a pay raise deal late last year, has created an especially difficult budget season this year.
“It really does feel a bit dysfunctional,” said Senate Minority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins after meeting with Cuomo earlier in the day. “We’re here waiting around for hours to get something to happen. There’s a deal, there isn’t a deal. It really, really does feel like it’s been a very bumpy budget season.”
|Print article||This entry was posted by Nick Reisman on April 3, 2017 at 12:04 am, and is filed under Andrew Cuomo. Follow any responses to this post through RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.|
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