Pataki screws up the state budget plan

The pissing match over the New York State and City budget bills continues, making my work life a living hell.

The Governor has vetoed 119 items from the legislative budget, including the entire revenue bill on which the budget is based. The vetoed provisions include the income tax rate increase for higher-income taxpayers and the other tax increases.

The legislative leaders have said they expect the Senate and Assembly override the vetos today, but the vote is expected to be close and some legislators may be discouraged from overriding the veto in light of the Governor’s (frivolous?) allegations that the increases are unconstitutional.

(This allegation could provide a disincentive to override because it shows that the Governor would commence a lengthy and costly court battle if the legislature goes ahead with his plan.)

In the last few days, the Governor also announced an alternate budget plan for the City of New York. A choice sentence from Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver on the matter: “Some might say better late than never, but then you realize that he’s paying for one slot machine per every three four-year-olds he’s kicking out of pre-K.”

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