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State budget could be sealed today; lawmakers going home

ALBANY - ALBANY _ State Assembly members plan to go home today after an expected final approval of a budget deal in a closed-door conference, two Assembly sources told Newsday.

If  they can’t approve the plan today, Assembly members still, at this point, plan to go home. They could then return Saturday to finish the state budget so it could begin printing Saturday night. That would meant the budget could be ready for passage on time without suspending the three-days' public review required by the constitution.

Either way, Assembly members and senators said they are confident a budget will be done before the deadline at midnight Tuesday.

The Senate’s Republican majority has been pushing back at Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo’s ethics bill, but all sides are confident a deal can be struck as early as today.

Cuomo wants legislators who have outside jobs as lawyers to reveal their clients. Senate Republicans are considering a counter measure that would reveal only clients they represent who have business before the state.

Blair Horner of the New York Public Interest Research Group said that Senate idea would simply matching existing law.

“While the devil is in the details, it is possible that the plan would far fall short of the governor's pledge that New York would have the most stringent ethics requirements in the

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