Get ready for some Albany-style bickering! Tomorrow, Governor Paterson will convene a special session of the Legislature to discussion issues like the $3 billion budget deficit and—possibly—gay marriage, but the NY Times is worried enough that it has an editorial, "Albany’s toughest and most important job right now is to make certain that New York does not become another California, running out of cash, paying bills with i.o.u.’s and watching state credit ratings deteriorate."
Paterson's plan is to make big cuts from education and Medicaid spending. Senate Democrats, who were unwilling to even attend the special session until recently, have offered their own budget ideas made up of "refinancing of tobacco settlement bonds, sweeps for unspent cash in state agencies and authorities, and an extension of operating hours for video slot machine parlors." The Observer points out, "This bill has no companion bill in the Assembly, and no one expects it to pass. High-ranking Democrats in the Senate tell me that the purpose of Kruger's bill is to make the governor back away from his proposed education cuts and show just how much money there is lying around."
Paterson's spokesman told the Daily News that the Senate Dems' plan is "nothing but fiscal gimmicks, borrowing, one-shots and avoidance behavior... This type of financial engineering is exactly what got New York State into its current budget problems in the first place."