NYS Revenue Forecasts

Governor Eliot Spitzer’s 2008-09 Executive Budget Proposal called for a 5.2 percent increase in state spending – a move that many labeled “belt-tightening.”

Since that initial proposal more economic data has come in and Legislative conferences have releases their revenue projections for the year. At issue is the amount of money available to spend. The impact on the state budget negotiations is self-evident.

Here are the conference revenue projections.

The Assembly Majority Democrats project an excess of $52 million in 2007-08 and a shortfall of $667 million for 2008-09 for a net decrease of $615 million – an argument for budget cuts or increased debt.

The Assembly Minority Republicans (a group with virtually no impact on the budget talks) projecs a shortfall of $113.8 million for 2007-08 and a shortfall of $201.5 million for 2008-09 for a net decrease of $315 million – another argument for budget cuts.

The Senate Majority Republicans project an excess of $95 million for 2007-08 and an excess of $4 million for 2008-09 for a net increase in state revenue of $99 million, and an effort to increase state spending – beyond Spitzer’s proposal – to a level roughly three times the rate of inflation.

The Senate Minority Democrats are closely aligned with the Governor and are expected to echo his forecasts.

All of this information is open to interpretation but does seem to point to a protracted and unusual budget battle, with Democrats hopes of seizing control of the Senate guiding most decisions.

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