State lawmakers pass budget extension as talks continue
ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) — Monday afternoon, an extension was tacked onto the original deadline for the New York State budget which was April 1.
An extension will ensure that state employees get a paycheck this week, however, since it came after the budget deadline, New York State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli said some might see a delay.
There are multiple topics still under discussion that are keeping it from getting the stamp of approval, which is why the proposed state budget of $216 billion missed its deadline Friday.
"The Bills stadium, as well as the proposed changes from the governor on bail reform, have been the two policy considerations which have taken up the most oxygen in the room,” State Sen. Jeremy Cooney (D, 56) told News10NBC.
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"Certainly you could point to those things as a reason we don’t have a budget,” Assemblyman Josh Jensen (R, 134) told News10NBC.
The extension, decided on Monday, will give the budget until April 7 to pass. We know bail reform is a sticking point. Gov. Kathy Hochul and law enforcers want some changes to it, advocates like it the way is and are pushing back.
Cooney said he was part of a meeting with district attorneys from across the state over the weekend.
"We hear every day about the need to make changes in the criminal justice system, we want to maintain some of the good things in bail reform but we have to focus in on these illegal guns on the street,” Cooney said.
Some Republican leaders say they don’t know enough about the bail reform proposal to make a decision.
"It did break away some trust in negotiating, and hang-ups on bail reform, in particular, is what is dividing Democrats across the state who do hold the majority in both houses,” Jensen added.
As for the Bills, the governor’s budget provides $600 million in state tax dollars to help build a new stadium in Orchard Park.
"I think a lot of people are concerned that I’ve heard from, that I represent, they think that that money can be used in other ways like to improve roads and bridges and things of that nature,” Jensen added.
With this first extender, there needs to be a decision by midnight Thursday. If not, legislative leaders say there could be another extension put in place, but they’re hopeful for a pass.
The governor did briefly address reporters, Monday, saying she and lawmakers are getting close to a deal.