Paterson: We Have a $14 Billion Deficit, and It May Grow

ALBANY—As he continues to make the case for spending cuts, David Paterson warned that the state's deficit could grow after

ALBANY—As he continues to make the case for spending cuts, David Paterson warned that the state's deficit could grow after the current budget is passed. The deficit is currently estimated at $14 billion; Paterson said if things proceeded as they did last year, it could grow to $17 billion.

"It is possible that we would have to do that again," he said, referencing special sessions last year that cut mid-year deficits. "We may have to find $17 billion in deficit reduction, and I'm saying this to stop people from thinking that we can solve every problem with stimulus money, or with proposals that I don't even agree with, that even if we did them wouldn't add up to half of it. Someone around here is going to have to find spending reductions. Spending reductions. It's the only way we're going to prioritize and balance the budget."

Paterson first brought up the $17 billion amount during an interview with Fred Dicker on Talk 1300. He later clarified during a question scrum with reporters. Paterson: We Have a $14 Billion Deficit, and It May Grow