ALBANY—David Paterson said he hopes to arrive at a deal with legislative leaders next week to close M.T.A.’s deficit. He played down reports of squabbling between himself, Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver and Senate Majority Leader Malcolm Smith.
“I don’t think there’s been much squabbling among the leaders,” Paterson said after a press conference related to Swine flu, where Health Commissioner Dr. Richard Daines said there were three more “probable” cases outside of New York City. Earlier, Senate Minority Leader Dean Skelos accused Paterson of engaging in a “political battle” with Silver and Smith.
“It hasn’t been a problem with the leaders in terms of providing plans, but I think the problem right now has been acquiring the votes for those plans and that has moved us more into a political process, which really offends me. Because this is a very serious situation,” Paterson said. “I will be talking with leaders about some new ideas that I have later today and tomorrow so hopefully I can end this topic, by the beginning of next week, I hope. But it all depends on the ability of legislators to come together.”