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Bloomberg unveils FY 2013 budget to close $2B deficit

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bloomberg Credit: Office of the Mayor

Mayor Michael Bloomberg pledged no tax hikes, but warned of skyrocketing pension costs and ballooning budget deficits in future years during a city budget proposal unveiled Thursday.

"Let me repeat, no tax increases, no layoffs of teachers or uniformed workers and no walking away from our long-term investments," Bloomberg said, presenting a $68.7 billion budget for fiscal year 2013, which starts July 1.

The mayor, a political independent, has regularly demanded that city agencies "do more with less," and the new budget plan is partly balanced with $1 billion of cuts he ordered in November.

The budget was not without its critics, including Public Advocate Bill de Blasio, who said it "hurts" New York's children. The proposed budget includes:

-- Spending less in all departments except education, which has a $24.6 billion budget that does not include the possibility of teacher layoffs - a point of contention for the past three years.

-- A $40 million reduction for fire companies, money that the City Council had previously restored.

-- Covering $8 billion in pension costs, a nearly 500% increase since 2002. To save money, Bloomberg wants the state to create a less costlier pension tier for future public employees.

(With Reuters)

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Mayor Michael Bloomberg said Thursday he'd match up to $250,000 in donations raised by the Planned Parenthood Federation of America. The announcement comes after the Susan G. Komen for the Cure foundation said it was pulling Planned Parenthood's grant because the group's under government investigation.

"Politics have no place in health care," the billionaire mayor said in a statement.

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