Senate reaches tentative deal in MTA bailout

(AP) - The Senate's Democratic majority has atentative agreement with all its 32 members needed to approve abailout of New York City's transit system and avoid double-digitfare increases and service cuts.
Senate Majority Leader Malcolm Smith met privately with keysenators in opposition into the evening Monday. But withconcessions that include special funding to school districts toexempt them from the payroll tax that would help fund the bailout,the suburban senators are so far agreeing to support the proposal.
Democratic Gov. David Paterson proposes the so-called bullet aidfor schools as a way to get enough votes for a bailout before fareincreases begin at the end of May.
Now the proposal goes to the Democrat-led Assembly where it'slikely to be approved.