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Politics & Government

New York State Lawmakers on Pace to Finalize Budget by Thursday Night — Friday Morning

Karen DeWitt

Governor Cuomo and state lawmakers are in what they say are the final stages of finalizing the next fiscal year's budget. They've set a self-imposed deadline of Thursday night — or early Friday morning — to complete the $170 billion package in time for the holiday weekend and the April 1 deadline.  Syracuse-area Senator John DeFrancisco says he's confident a deal can be made, because most of the controversial non-fiscal provisions are being jettisoned from the budget for later debate.

“The big issues are pretty much resolved. The exact dollar amount—it's very difficult to say. But there are always things that pop up at the last minute, so you never really say it's over until it’s over.”

The main controversial items this year are bail reform, federal tax deduction workarounds and early voting. As talks come to a close, DeFrancisco pointed out that what matters is not the budget deadline, but the budget itself.

“I think all the parties have finally recognized that the key to an on-time budget is to have a budget, not an end of session requirement that everything gets done by April 1.”

DeFrancisco is the Deputy Senate Majority Leader and a Republican hopeful to challenge Governor Cuomo in November elections.