March 30, 2013

State budget cuts disability funding, raises school aid


“A lot of people will be disappointed that there wasn’t much done on the SAFE Act,” Duprey said.

“You can get a 10-bullet magazine but only use seven bullets.”


Aid to community colleges went up an additional $150 per full-time equivalent student in the approved budget, which will make a difference in the bottom line at North Country Community College and Clinton Community College, Duprey said.

“The increase brings state aid per student to $2,422. Our community colleges do a great job and this is going to be a big boost.”

There is $89 million in the new budget for state parks improvement, and some of that funding will be used to repair flood damage in the Adirondacks, dating back to 2011 destruction from Tropical Storm Irene.

A new tax rebate, called the Family Tax Relief Check, funded with $375 million next year, promises a $350 rebate check for families earning between $40,000 and $300,000 annually and with at least one child younger than age 17. Qualification is based on two prior tax years, and the payments would begin mid October of 2014 and extend for three years.

The budget was approved by the Assembly early Friday morning, and Cuomo was expected to sign it without further question.

“As with all budgets, it was a compromise,” Duprey said. “A lot of negotiations took place with four men in a room.”

“The new budget keeps state spending below a 2 percent cap for a third consecutive year, funds programs and services important to many in our communities and includes new tax relief to help families and businesses,” Little said.

“On time is what should always be the case, but doing so three years in a row, given the past track record, is a good trend.”

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