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Budget Deadline Fast Approaching

Friday, March 20, 2009

The March 25th deadline for an agreement in Albany on how to fix the MTA's over $1 billion budget deficit is quickly approaching.

REPORTER: Governor Paterson is determined to have a plan by next week, but speaking on WOR radio today, he says there's currently no consensus among legislative leaders on how to do that.

PATERSON: This is just a classic example of Albany thinking it can make up its own rules. That is a solid date, March 25th.

REPORTER: If no revenue alternative comes from the state, the MTA says it'll be forced to dramatically raise subway and bus fares 25 percent. Many New Yorkers are upset, but Jeremy Kaufman, a musician who lives in Queens says he's ok with paying more for the subway.

KAUFMAN: I don't mind it, honestly. It's a great system. I've lived all over the world and as far as being able to get around without a car, I'm willing to pay $2.50. You know, it's no beef for me, so no big deal.

REPORTER: The governor is pushing for a plan that would raise transit fares 8 percent, and put tolls on the Harlem and East river bridges.

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