GUEST OP-ED: On-time budget for second straight year

It wasn’t that long ago that the words “dysfunctional” and “Albany” were always connected. Out-of-control spending, late budget, and a government unable to make even the most

routine decisions had become business as usual.

Things are beginning to change. For the second year in a row, we have an on-time budget that does a lot of good things for New York City, so much so that we can say that New York City

and the New York Giants are the winners this year.

This budget is a win for all New York City residents because it doesn’t raise taxes, it doesn’t increase state spending, it doesn’t cut the pension of any current state employee, and it doesn’t force new costs on the city through unfunded mandates.

This budget does many good things for the city. The state will assume the costs of increases in Medicaid spending. This will save New York City nearly $1 billion over the next five years. It will improve transportation by adding $770 million in operating money to the Metropolitan Transit Authority and increasing its capital fund by $7 billion for a total of $13 billion dollars in the current five-year plan.

In addition, the legislature increased spending for education for New York City by $292 million over the last school year. Also, $450 million has been allocated statewide to benefit hospitals such as Brooklyn’s Lutheran Medical Center, Maimonides Medical Center and SUNY Downstate to ensure quality health care for our residents.

Working with the governor, this budget creates “NY Works” to rebuild the state’s roads, highways and bridges. This will create thousands of new jobs and get our economy back on track.

The budget restores $30 million to the EPIC program to help fixed-income seniors afford the cost of prescriptions. Co-pays will be capped at $20, helping many seniors afford the drugs they need.

The budget includes the second round of Regional Council award funding – – $500 million – – to continue the important work we did last year to rebuild our regional economies.

The budget keeps the New York State Department of Transportation (DOT) regional office in Queens open to ensure the unique transportation needs of New York City are met.

Two straight on-time, fiscally responsible budgets prove that we have turned the corner and are doing the people’s business for the taxpayers—again.

Marty Golden represents the 22nd S.D.

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