Yet so far, they've failed to come an agreement on just how to close it.
The governor hasn't been shy about touting mid-year cuts to two of the state's largest areas of spending.
He’s already proposed cutting a $686 million in school aid from now until the end of the school year and $287 million proposed for the Medicaid health insurance program.
In a weekend radio interview said lawmakers aren't supporting the plan because of intimidation by interest groups that support spending on both.
Yet members of Paterson's own democratic party are reportedly formulating their own plan to avoid those cuts.
In an ironic twist, this morning's New York Post reports that state democrats are considering imposing $1 billion in new taxes on health care providers, yet critics argue those costs would eventually trickle down to patients.
But the governor proposed a revenue raising idea of his own -- a deal that would require all vehicle owners to buy a new 25-dollar license plate by April first, no matter when your current plate expires.
The move could generate a projected $129 million dollars, yet after thousands signed an online petition in protest of the idea, Paterson says he will scratch it if lawmakers work with him to identify alternative savings measures.