Paterson Withholds Aid After Senate Plays Politics With Budget

David Paterson

David Paterson

After consistently pleading with the state legislature, particularly the state senate, to cut the New York State budget by $3.2 billion to prevent an economic collapse, Governor David Paterson has taken matters into his own hands and is now withholding 10% of the aid due to government agencies and schools.

Here’s a quick rundown of what’s been going on:

Seeing the state’s deficit rise to well over $3 billion, Governor David Paterson asked the state legislature to cut the budget by $3.2 billion to prevent the same type of economic collapse that happened in California from happening in New York.

After a lot of stalling and back-room politics, the state legislature came back with a deal that would only cut the state budget by $2.7 billion. Did I mention that the state deficit is at least $500 million more than that?

Governor Paterson vowed to take action into his own hands and it appears that he is doing just that; putting his political career on the line to make tough but seemingly necessary cuts to the state budget.

To begin with, Paterson is withholding 10% of the nearly $2 billion due to schools and government agencies tomorrow.

Paterson clarified that by “withholding” the funds, he is not impounding them but delaying their release until it is financially feasible for the state to release those funds.

While education groups are preparing to sue Paterson for release of the funds, it appears that the governor has full power to do so.

Paterson continued to blame the State Senate for dragging their feet and being more concerned about their own jobs than the financial future of the state.

Say what you will about Paterson but at least the guy takes responsibility and puts his money where his mouth is.

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