New York, NY —
Schools and hospitals are eagerly waiting to see what share they’ll get of the state's share of the federal stimulus package. Governor Paterson says he is not hiding plans for the money, but is first waiting to reconcile different estimates about how bad the state’s finances actually are.
PATERSON: We don’t even know how much the deficit is. Our last project is $13 billion. The Assembly’s last projection is $14.2 billion. We have to come together on an agreement on what the forecast is for what the deficit is.
Paterson says the stimulus money would be used to offset part, but not all, of the proposed budget cuts to education and health care. He says he supports reducing proposed cuts in the two areas by the same percentage and he's would like to have a proposed plan by early next week.