Governor Eliot Spitzer gave his first 2007 Budget Address, one that shook up old budget ideas. He wants to spend more, for starters, increasing the budget by 6.3% to $120.6 billion (illuminating Times graphic here). Still, Spitzer called his budget "austere," as he suggested adding almost 2,500 more state jobs. And though he's not cutting taxes, he's not raising them (there is also some property tax relief for the middle class).
He noted how NY State spends the most on Medicaid but has the highest chronic disease death rate in the country, so he's going to change health care spending. He wants to curb Medicaid's rising costs and cut health care recruitment, which will probably bring the ire of very powerful health unions. Spitzer said, "We're not just going to take the money and just throw it away. We're going to impose reform and accountability." Because, on Day Thirty-One, everything changes!
Education funding will change too: While NYC will receive $3.17 billion in education funding (if the city spend $2.2 billion if its own), the budget also changes the municipal aid formula in such a way that will take $350 million from the Big Apple. Mayor Bloomberg will head to Albany to testify about the NY State budget on Monday.
Here's a budget breakdown from the Times Union. The Times predicts "long battles ahead" and Spitzer is totally cool with being a steamroller.
Photograph of state budgets by Tim Roske/AP