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Paterson Has New Proposals for Tackling the Budget Deficit

Monday, January 11, 2010

Governor Paterson says he'll stick to a self-imposed cap on state spending when he releases his budget this month, and even promises to generate a surplus that can be given back to New Yorkers in the form a property tax credit. But the governor is still pushing hard to raise new revenues.

While new taxes will not be the focus of his budget plan, Paterson says when the legislature sees the deep spending cuts he intends to make, some new revenue raisers might be necessary. "The only taxes that would be on the table are dedicated taxes, so a cigarette tax would be dedicated to health care," Paterson says.

The Governor is also considering the making ultimate fighting, a sport that has opponents fighting each other in steel cages, and was banned in New York in the 1990s for being too violent, legal again.

Paterson says borrowing more money is not an option; he doesn't want to risk the state's credit rating. And he says the states rainy day fund is already spent.

The governor is scheduled to release his 2010-2011 budget proposal next week. The state faces a $7 billion budget shortfall.

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