The New York state Democratic Party has agreed to pay a $45,000 federal fine and revamp sloppy bookkeeping practices to clear up fund-raising problems that followed former Gov. Mario Cuomo's re-election loss three years ago.

The fine, levied by the Federal Election Commission, is part of an agreement under which the party will also retain an outside accounting firm to review its records and ensure they are in compliance with the law.In addition, the Democrats agreed that any new personnel hired to keep campaign finance records will attend an FEC workshop or other training.

According to the election commission, the Democrats did not account for how they spent some party funds and failed to disclose some of their debts.

The party blamed its problems on the confusion that developed after Cuomo's 1994 defeat by the current governor, Republican George Pataki.