Skelos: Rent-tax cap on front burner, gay marriage on back burner

Senate Majority leader Dean Skelos (R-Rockville Centre) speaks Senate Majority leader Dean Skelos (R-Rockville Centre) speaks with reporters after a meeting Monday at the Capitol with Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver (D-Manhattan). (June 20, 2011) Photo Credit: AP

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Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos (R-Rockville Centre) just had a very brief meeting with Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo and the short answer is no, there are no new breakthroughs on the rent control-tax cap log jam. For now. He indicated there is progress and that "certain things" might be settled Tuesday.

But, no, that doesn't include the gay marriage legislation. The senator said he doesn't think the Senate will take up a vote Tuesday on whether New York should legalize same-sex marriage.

Skelos reiterated his stance on the rent-tax cap: that the proposed 2 percent tax cap should not not have an expiration date; that rent control should be extended but not expanded;  and that he'd consider an eight-year rent extension (he introduced a new bill to that effect).

After his chat with the governor, Skelos said somewhat cryptically: "I think we'll close certain things down today." Asked if the Legislature might vote Tuesday on any of the major issues, he said: "I hope to."

 Also, he noted  the SUNY plan -- tuition hikes to help campuses add staff and jumpstart economic development projects -- is still alive.

 "I think we're getting positive movement on SUNY," Skelos said.

Cuomo didn't emerge from the meeting to address the media. Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver (D-Manhattan) didn't attend. That's not necessarily a sign; Cuomo has met one-on-one with the leaders often during this session. 

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Photo: Sen. Dean Skelos (R-Rockville Centre) updates news crews on debate over the rent-tax cap, and legislation to permit gay marriage. (June 20, 2011)

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