State Parks Deal Nearer - $77 Mil. Environmental Protection Fund Cut
Gov. Paterson this morning said he’s reached a deal with lawmakers to re-open state parks in time for the Memorial Day weekend - so long as both houses of the Legislature adopt it later today, according to the New York Daily News.
“We worked until about four o’clock in the morning and the staffs of the Senate and Assembly and the governor’s office appear to have resolved the issues about the state parks,” Paterson said on WOR’s "The John Gambling Show."
Paterson said legislative leaders have come up with the necessary spending cuts to re-open the 41 state parks and 14 historic sites that have not opened this season because of the budget crunch.
“The legislature has made the tough choices to may satisfaction that will enable us to open the parks,” Pateron said. “That’s the good news. Now the bad news is that it has taken about four days to find 11 million to keep the parks open.”
Paterson’s initial proposal to re-open the parks, which the Legislature rejected on Monday, took the money from the Environmental Protection Fund. But to approve the deal, lawmakers had to go along with Paterson’s proposal to shave $77 million from the fund’s total budget, which the governor said is necessary to help close the state’s $9.2 billion budget deficit.