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Paterson, Legislative Leaders Agree to Close Budget Deficit

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

New York State is back in black for the time being. Governor Paterson announced the legislature passed a bill that will close the $1.6 billion budget gap and balance the books for the current fiscal year. Karen DeWitt reports from Albany.

REPORTER: Governor Paterson and Democratic legislative leaders agreed to close the state's deficit for the current fiscal year by raiding a number of funds, including an environmental funds, reduction in some aid payment to cities and imposing new taxes on health insurance companies. Governor Paterson says the plans are just the beginning though, of cuts that will be needed to close next year's gap, which is still $13 billion.

PATERSON: Every New Yorkers is going to be asked to share in this sacrifice. Some did today, and we thank them and we apologize that we had to make these cuts.

REPORTER: Republicans have objected to the plan saying it would use recent tuition increases at SUNY to plug the gap which they say amounts to stealing from public university students. In Albany, I'm Karen DeWitt.

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