State budget could be passed by end of week, says Hochul

Published: Apr. 25, 2023 at 4:49 PM EDT
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WATERTOWN, New York (WWNY) - The New York state budget is now 24 days past its April 1 deadline. It is the latest a state spending plan has gone without being passed since 2010, and the second year in a row for Governor Kathy Hochul having a budget past due.

The governor addressed New Yorkers Tuesday about the budget.

“At the end of the day, and that day is approaching, I don’t think New Yorkers or anybody outside this room will be focused on the length of time, but they’ll be looking at the quality of my blueprint for leading this state forward,” she said.

Indications out of Albany are that blueprint will be approved sooner than later.

“I do see a path to wrap up the budget, perhaps as early as the end of this week,” said Hochul.

Hochul’s proposed $227 billion budget is the largest ever, up more than 2 percent from last year’s spending plan.

“Take all of this political policy that you’re negotiating and horse trading on, throw it off the table. Pass a fiscally responsible bare-bones budget, and let’s move on,” said state Senator Mark Walczyk (R. - 46th District).

Walczyk’s call for transparency comes as a battle on bail reform and affordable housing seem to be the biggest hurdles for a deal to be done.

“One of the things that we have been advocating for and fighting for is meaningful changes to bail,” said Assemblyman Scott Gray (R. - 116th District.

The latest reports have those changes in bail reform staying in the budget.

But Hochul’s attempt to force downstate counties to build more housing, or face a zoning override by Albany apparently won’t make it in. It was a way, Hochul believed, to create more affordable housing.

“To the best of my knowledge, housing is out as a matter of the budget; that’s what we’re hearing,” said Gray.

WCBS-TV in New York City reports a minimum wage increase is likely in the budget while a state ban on flavored tobacco is probably out.

Governor Hochul says that’s still very much under discussion.