Scanning reaction to the state budget

nys capitol

One person described this year's budget process as having "Kremlin-like secrecy."

This year's almost $132 billion state budget has provoked quite a few, uh, passionate reactions.

Here's the condensed version of what people are saying...

On the numbers

+ NYT's Nicholas Confessore writes that, despite what David Paterson has been saying, the budget doesn't include many cuts so much as it does a slowing of spending increases.

+ "They are treating this stimulus package as methadone, to get them past the shakes and sweats of this budget cycle," Baruch College prof Doug Muzzio told the AP.

+ TU editorial: this year's budget relies too heavily on money that might not be there in the future.

+ David Paterson on many of the moves made to work out this year's budget: "None of this makes sense." (What?) Senate minority leader Dean Skelos was happy to agree with Paterson. [Buffalo News] [Daily Politics]

+ Fred Dicker: the budget is a "monstrously bloated, tax-and-spend plan that, in one fell swoop, reverses a three-decade-long effort to strengthen business and prevent taxpayers from fleeing the state."


On the process

+ NYPIRG's Blair Horner on this year's closed-door budget process: "There's no way for the public to know how the numbers add up." [AP]

+ Ithaca Journal editorial: budget is a "sad state of affairs" and the closed-door budget process was "government at its worst."

+ "It is a budget without logic, without common sense and without a clear understanding of what is required to bring New York back from this recession," the president of a Long Island business group told Newsday.

+ Binghamton Press and Sun-Bulletin editorial: budget is a "gross dereliction of duty and sheer defiance of common sense" by state leaders.


On Silver and Paterson

+ NYT's Danny Hakim concludes that Sheldon Silver is now "the capital's center of gravity," winning what he wanted in this year's budget.

+ New York Daily News editorial: Silver "steamrolled" Paterson into gorging on stimulus money.

+ NYDN's Bill Hammond: "Gov. Paterson and his fellow Democrats are confirming everyone's worst fears about Albany becoming a one-party town. Instead of demonstrating that they can be fiscally responsible in a crisis, they are acting just like stereotypical, out-of-control, big-government liberals." He adds that the Republican "attack ads practically write themselves."


On pork

+ The Empire Center on the $170 million of "member items": budget is a "recession-proof porkfest." [Newsday]

+ Senate Democrats didn't itemize their "member items" -- or as NYDN's Ken Lovett described it, they're "playing hide the pork."


Maybe it's not so bad

+ Daily Gazette editorial: the budget "could have been worse" and at the very least, it's on time.

+ Syracuse Post-Standard editorial: budget is "hardly a disaster" -- but the future could be tough.


Earlier on AOA: The state budget gets bigger and bigger and...

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