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Revised, last-minute pitch for Dream Act, education tax credit

ALBANY -    The Cuomo administration has revised an 11th-hour pitch to hitch together the so-called Dream Act with a bill to allow an education tax credit, lawmakers said Thursday.

  Earlier, this week Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo said the two proposals likely would have to be addressed after the state budget is settled because the Democrat-led Assembly opposed the tax credit (which it said would benefit the wealthy) and the Republican-controlled Senate opposed the Dream Act, which would allow children of illegal immigrants to apply for state-funded college tuition grants.

  But as budget talks moved into the final stages, the Assembly reviewed a revised offer: a one-time, $30 million appropriation that would be available to “dreamers” through the State University of New York and the City University of New York; and a modified, $100 million tax credit that would apply to private schools only.

  It wasn’t immediately clear if the new proposal would fare any better than the old, said several legislators. Some supporters have said the two proposals should be voted on separately, rather thank linked. Cuomo has said linking would be a way to get both approved.

  Assembly Democrats began a closed-door budget meeting early Thursday afternoon; Senate Republicans were set to convene later. Lawmakers are trying to enact a budget by April 1, the beginning of New York's fiscal year.



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