Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos (R- Nassau County) has affirmed the Senate's support for public education, saying layoffs of school staff, college faculty, health care providers and other essential service providers "would be a mistake" and wrong for children and taxpayers.
Sen. Skelos' full statement follows.
FOR RELEASE: Immediate, Tuesday, October 14, 2008
SENATE MAJORITY LEADER SKELOS IN WESTERN NEW YORK REPEATS HIS CALL FOR NO MID-YEAR SCHOOL AID CUTS OR LAYOFFS
Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos visited Western New York today where he met with local community leaders and members of labor and business organizations and addressed proposals being considered to close the state budget shortfall.
"The state and national media are reporting that the Governor is considering mid-year school aid cuts," Senator Skelos said. "The state should not go back on its commitment to education because it would force property tax increases and layoffs that would be wrong for our children, wrong for our schools and wrong for taxpayers.
"The crisis in our economy has resulted in thousands of layoffs and laying off even more people would only compound the economic damage," Senator Skelos said. "Whether it's the people who clear our roads, or teach our children in public schools and colleges, or provide health care to our seniors, when times get tough, people depend more on public services, not less and it would be a mistake to resort to layoffs."
Senator Skelos said he will continue to work with the Governor and Assembly to close the budget deficit, but repeated his opposition to mid-year school aid cuts and public employee layoffs.