N.Y. Senate session comes to abrupt end

Democratic and Republican state senators agreed to meet Thursday for a special session after Gov. David Paterson threatened to withhold their pay, but the session was quickly adjourned in 10 minutes.

"In light of the fact that the governor has still neglected to bring the Assembly into extraordinary session number three with us, I have to move that we not take up any legislative activity today and adjourn the special session," announced Senate Majority Leader Malcolm Smith, ending the session.

State Senators were expected to consider several bills dealing with a variety of issues, including sales taxes for communities in Westchester County and same-sex marriage. Now, everything has been put on hold.

Rob Astorino, the Republican candidate for the post of Westchester County executive, says Senate leaders should resolve the deadlock by Friday or resign.

"It's embarrassing," he says. "It was a side show for too long, and now it's going to have real consequences [for] people in Westchester County."

Deputy Westchester County Executive Susan Tolchin released a statement late Thursday saying she agrees that the state Senate is dysfunctional. However, she says Astorino's criticism is hypocritical because he missed committee meetings when he was a county legislator and still collected his paycheck.

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