With super-majorities in both the state Assembly and Senate and a fiscal situation that's improving but still iffy, a number of Democrats are introducing legislation that would increase borrowing and make taxing easier. This is exactly what they shouldn't be doing. The state still faces a budget deficit next year of almost $2 billion, and debt service payments are increasing - as is debt service as a percentage of the budget. There's no telling how far this legislation will go - it's very early in the session and anybody can introduce anything. Plus, it's unlikely that the governor will go along with any tax-and-spend frenzy. Still... From the Bond Buyer:
Gabriel Petek, an analyst with Standard & Poor's, which earlier this year raised its outlook on the state's A-minus credit rating to positive, said debt service has absorbing a larger share of the state budget than even earlier in the last decade. "The state's debt load has increased substantially in recent years," Petek said. "The fiscal position remains tenuous. In a way, the budget politics may be harder now because the perception is out there that things are so much better. This might make it more difficult to enact an austerity budget."