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Republicans Claim Albany Shut Down Today Unlikely

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Republican senators say government will not be shut down when the state’s temporary budget extenders expire later today, and indicate that they will provide enough votes to help Democrats keep things running.

Senate GOP Leader Dean Skelos says some of his members will provide the votes to help Democrats approve the latest budget extender to keep the state running.

“The bottom line is, nobody wants to have a government shutdown,” Skelos says.

At least one Democratic senator has said he won’t vote for the measures because they cut too much money to welfare programs and services for the mentally ill and the disabled. The two GOP senators voting for the bill Monday, Sen. Hugh Farley of Schenectady and Sen. Roy McDonald of Saratoga, say they have too many state workers as constituents that would be harmed if there was a government shut down.

But Senators Farley and McDonald say they might change their minds in the future if Gov. David Paterson tries to put new taxes into his extender bills. That could lead to another round of brinksmanship later this month.