City's new budget draws mixed reaction

The city?s new budget has drawn a mixed reaction, with some satisfied but others anticipating significant cuts.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg and City Council Speaker Christine Quinn called the decisions difficult, but smart and responsible, some political pundits say otherwise.

?This is absolutely a bad-news budget, especially if you are a senior or someone who counts on city services,? says political analyst Austin Shafran.

City officials agreed on cutting $20 million in senior services, which will affect programs such as Meal on Wheels. Also, more than 1,500 summer jobs that go to the city?s youth are expected to be eliminated.

?Seniors, people who rent, people who rely on government services to survive - these are not just going to seem like a few dollars and a few cuts,? Shafran says.

Bloomberg and Quinn have said that because of the difficult economic climate, they are open to revisiting the budget if need be.

The budget is expected to be passed Sunday and be in place for the 2009 fiscal year, which begins Tuesday.

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