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New York lawmakers return Monday for budget extension

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Gov. Kathy Hochul and New York lawmakers have until noon Monday to pass a temporary budget extension. 

Lawmakers are expected to gavel in Monday morning to consider a temporary spending measure that will fund New York’s government until April 17.

The money is expected to cover so-called institutional payroll for about 83,000 state workers. Comptroller Tom DiNapoli warned last week lawmakers must have a budget extension approved by noon to avoid any disruption in paying state employees.

The budget provision is also expected to include $9 million in funding for AIDS drugs for health care providers following changes this month to a Medicaid prescription drug program known as 304B, according to a source on Sunday familiar with the plan. 

Health care providers that provide safety net services for low-income Medicaid patients have raised concerns with the changes and how it will affect their reimbursement under the program. State Medicaid officials have insisted patients will not experience any disruption in services or access to prescription medication. 

A state budget for New York is now more than a week late, meanwhile. 

Democratic lawmakers and Gov. Kathy Hochul remain at odds over changes to New York’s 2019 bail law as the governor has called for an end to the least restrictive provision for when judges consider bail for serious criminal charges. 

“We’re working very hard, because my priorities have been clear from the beginning: I’m going to work to make sure the judges have the discretion they should have,” Hochul said on Saturday. 

Hochul has also called for a statewide housing plan that is meant to encourage the development of 800,000 units of new housing in the next 10 years.

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