Shrieks echoed through the Capitol yesterday as Gov. Cuomo unleashed a $133 billion hack-and-slash spending plan that would subject schools, hospitals and the state workforce to some of the deepest cuts in recent memory and spare virtually no aspect of state government.Only in New York could a $133 billion budget be considered draconian.
The governor's hard-times budget proposal would close a projected $10 billion gap with nearly $9 billion in cuts and no new borrowing or broad-based tax hikes. Cuts included $2.9 billion each in projected spending from Medicaid and local school aid -- among the largest on record.
"New York state is functionally bankrupt," Cuomo warned in his budget presentation to lawmakers, who will face pressure by special-interest groups to resist the cuts. "In a down economy, this is a death spiral," he said.
Cuomo ordered a 10 percent across-the-board spending cut to state agencies and threatened as many as 9,800 layoffs if public-employee unions reject a call for $450 million in annual concessions and givebacks.
Cuomo has suggested he would be willing to shut down state government if lawmakers fail to approve a spending plan by the April 1 start of the new fiscal year.Well, look at the upside. That probably means a lot fewer out-of-state gun stings to be run by Bloomberg.
From colleges to libraries to prisons, few corners of state government would be left unscathed:
* The city stood to get $660 million less than last year in aid, including a $578 million reduction in school payments. However, Mayor Bloomberg -- factoring in the same assumed spending hike Cuomo criticized -- said the actual impact would be more like $2 billion.