Waiting on the Budget

The City Council’s budget negotiating team stayed late last night at City Hall, trying to hammer out a budget before the June 30 deadline. A handshake agreement is expected today or tomorrow.

In the meantime, it’s a scene. Lobbyists have been a permanent fixture on the City Hall steps and in the City Hall rotunda for days, if not weeks, hounding lawmakers, staffers, and even reporters for any information.

Yesteday afternoon, I bumped into City Councilman Tony Avella across the street from City Hall. When I asked about the budget, he threw up his hands up–it seems he’s waiting for information, just like the rest of us. Downstairs in the basement of City Hall, I saw Helen Foster and Diana Reyna walking by. When I asked if we had a budget deal yet, Foster said, “Am I a size 4 yet?”

So, if you want to know what’s going on, try prying information out of the City Council’s budget negotiating team [an earlier version left off some members]:

Robert Jackson

Gale Brewer

Melissa Mark Viverito

Dan Garodnick

Miguel Martinez

Melinda Katz

David Weprin

Helen Sears

Larry Seabrook

Maria del Carmen Arroyo

Maria Baez

Jimmy Oddo

Erik Dilan (Tish James sometimes substites for him)

Sara Gonzalez

Diana Reyna

Vinny Ignizio

Helen Foster

Tom White

Joel Rivera

Bill de Blasio

Lew Fidler

Inez Dickens

Leroy Comrie

Mike McMahon