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Senate back to Albany next week

ALBANY -– In today’s if-at-first-you-don’t-succeed example, the State Senate will return to Albany next Tuesday to, once again, try to resolve some outstanding matters. Chief on the list, though, will not be closing the state’s $315 million budget deficit.

Instead, the 62-member house is reconvening a week after this past Monday’s special session to try, again, to pass a bill to keep afloat a giant, state-owned off-track betting corporation in New York City.

The New York City Off-Track Betting Corp., is slated to close after business tomorrow -– on the one-year anniversary of its Chapter 9 bankruptcy reorganization petition.

Gov. David Paterson floated a plan, approved by the Assembly this week, to keep the OTB alive. But the Senate -– dismissing the shut-down threat as empty and amid concerns from some upstate tracks and OTB corporations about the funding cuts they will have to take as part of the deal -– left town without passing the bill.

The return comes as the Republicans -– if the lead holds in a still-contested Long Island race -– are poised to take back control of the Senate in January. Buffalo’s Democratic Sen. Antoine Thompson conceded the day after Monday’s special session in his race to Republican Mark Grisanti.

Word of next Tuesday's session was first announced this afternoon by Senate Republicans. Senate Democrats, though, were still not immediately confirming next week's session.

UPDATE: Senate Democratic Conference Leader John Sampson has now confirmed the session, saying the Senate Tuesday will consider the OTB bill along with a measure -- not approved this week in the Assembly -- to appropriate more than $600 million in new federal funding for New York's public schools.

--Tom Precious

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About Politics Now

Robert J. McCarthy

Robert J. McCarthy

A native of Schenectady, Robert J. McCarthy came to The Buffalo News in 1982 following a six-year stint at the Olean Times Herald. He is a graduate of St. Bonaventure University, and has been covering local, state and national politics since 1992.

rmccarthy@buffnews.com


Tom Precious

Tom Precious

Tom Precious joined The Buffalo News in 1997 as bureau chief at the state Capitol, where he covers everything from statewide politics and state government fiscal affairs to health care, environmental and municipal government matters. Prior to The News, he worked for news outlets in Albany and Washington, DC.

tprecious@buffnews.com


Jill Terreri

Jill Terreri

Jill Terreri is an Amherst native and has covered politics and government in upstate New York since 2003. She joined The Buffalo News in 2012 and covers City Hall.

@jillterreri | jterreri@buffnews.com


Jerry Zremski

Jerry Zremski

Jerry Zremski, The Buffalo News Washington bureau chief, has reported from the nation's capital since 1989 after joining The News as a business reporter in 1984. A graduate of Syracuse University, Zremski is a former Nieman fellow in journalism at Harvard University. In 2007, he served as president of the National Press Club.

@JerryZremski | jzremski@buffnews.com

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