Saturday, February 18, 2012
New push for pork
Democrats who dominate the Assembly are quietly pushing to insert pork spending into the state budget, leaders in the chamber said.
The state's ongoing fiscal crunch has meant no new cash for "member items," state funds directed by legislators to non-profit groups in the areas the represent, since 2009.
Last week, Assembly staffers directed Democratic members in the chamber to submit lists of organizations that were in need of funding, several members said. Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, D-Manhattan, confirmed to the Times Union he would push for their inclusion in a spending plan for the coming fiscal year, which must be in place by April 1.