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State Budget In Limbo

Gov. Andrew Cuomo yesterday floated the idea of a flexible fiscal plan that would allow his administration to adjust the state budget throughout the year based on the amount of revenue the state is actually bringing in.

It remains unclear, however, when lawmakers will return to Albany ahead of the approaching April 1 deadline and how they will sort out the logistics of discussing policy proposals and the budget bill and vote on the measures.

“You’re going to see education cuts across this state,” Cuomo said during an interview on WAMC. “New York State is basically bankrupt.”

Meanwhile, state Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins said she doesn’t love the idea of giving the governor unilateral power to cut the budget.

“We are a coequal branch of government,” Stewart-Cousins stressed, adding that she would “never be in favor of giving (Cuomo) wide latitude without the involvement of the Legislature” in most of the budget-related decisions.

Meanwhile, New York’s environmental lobby and dozens of local elected leaders are urging Cuomo and legislators to allocate $1 billion for water infrastructure improvements in the 2020-21 state budget, despite the challenges posed by the coronavirus pandemic.

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