The Assembly and Senate each approved their one-house budget resolutions last week, setting the state for budget conference committees to begin meeting this week to hash out a state budget.

 

The Assembly approved its one-house budget resolution last Wednesday.  Read the Assembly’s report on its one-house budget bill here.

 

Highlights of the Assembly’s $143.4 billion spending plan include:

 

–       $213 million in additional spending above the Executive Budget proposal;

–       an additional $4 billion in education funding over the next four years;

–       authorizing New York City to impose a personal income tax surcharge to fund Universal Pre-K (UPK) and after-school programs;

–       $25 million to fund the DREAM Act, which will allow undocumented immigrants to access state-funded college tuition assistance programs;

–       a circuit breaker personal income tax credit, costing $1.1 billion over 3 years;

–       a system of taxpayer-financed political campaigns;

–       elimination of the 18-a energy surcharge on residential customers; and

–       the legalization of medical marijuana.

 

In the Senate, where the Majority Coalition is made up of 29 Republicans, 5 members of the Independent Democratic Conference (IDC) and 1 Democrat, the one-house budget resolution was not approved until early Friday morning.

 

Highlights of the Senate’s spending plan include:

 

–       enacting the “Freeze Plus” property tax relief program, which will provide additional state aid to local governments that adhere to the 2% property tax cap;

–       provides $540 million to fund UPK and after-school programs;

–       modifying the Governor’s proposed corporate and bank tax reforms

–       modifying the Governor’s proposed campaign finance reforms (though it is unclear exactly how they plan to do so);

–       legalizing mixed martial arts; and

–       rejecting Gov. Cuomo’s plan to provide college education to some prison inmates.

 

With each house advancing its one-house spending plan, the next step in the budget process – budget conference committees – are expected to begin meeting later today.