Gov. David Paterson this morning raised the possibility that the state might have to consider selling some of its assets if its financial troubles and budget deadlock continue apace.

During an interview with WOR’s John Gambling, Paterson chided the Legislature for departing Albany yesterday without passing a bailout plan for the bankrupt city OTB.

The downstate gambling operation is now on track to shut its doors this Sunday – laying off some 1,300 people and negatively impacting the cash flow of other racing operations around the state.

Paterson insisted his proposal to rescue the NYC OTB was not a taxpayer-funded bailout, but would have floated a loan to NYRA to keep that cash-strapped operation in the black until the state inks a new deal with a VLT developer/operator for Aqueduct sometime in June.

Gambling asked Paterson why the state would not consider simply selling Aqueduct, and the governor replied:

“Well, John, we’re getting to the point where those are the types of decisions we’re going to have to consider.”

Paterson went on to say the state now must re-evaluate the “viability” of programs and “financial ventures” (like racing) that it has continued to support despite the fact that they have been losing money for years.

The governor marveled at how gambling operations can be money-losers, but said racing in New York has for become “a patronage mill – for both parties, by the way – over the years” and “wasn’t run properly.”

“You know, it’s a wonderful industry, and it works in some places,” Paterson said. “But apparently the encumbrances we placed on it in New York City and New York State are top-heavy, and when you get to a recession you’re going to….”

(At this moment, Paterson’s line to WOR cut out. He returned after a commercial break and told Gambling he is having his NYC apartment painted and the workers had accidentally disconnected the phone).