No sign of state budget agreement as deadline nears

Mar 20, 2016

It's crunch time in Albany. A state budget for the 2016-17 fiscal year is due April 1st. But so far, there has been little progress among state leaders in finalizing a budget.

There are a couple of key areas of disagreement. Governor Andrew Cuomo and Assembly Democrats are pushing paid family leave and a $15-an-hour minimum wage. But State Senate Republicans say both proposals would have a negative effect on small business.

Newsday's Michael Gormley assesses state budget negotiations on The Capitol Pressroom

Cuomo said these are the most difficult budget negotiations he's experienced.

On the Capitol Pressroom on WBFO, Newsday's Albany correspondent Michael Gormley said the governor is trying to lower expectations.

"There's already a possibility that his signature priorities -- minimum wage and paid family leave -- might go beyond the budget and be worked out later in the session," Gormley said. "So, lowering expectations is a good idea since he's raised them so much at all of his rallies."

Cuomo is using money from organized labor to advance his plan to raise the minimum wage. Cuomo says it will benefit millions of struggling workers, but critics question if he's looking to score political points with unions after years of strained relations.