Nicole has an op-ed in today’s New York Post exploring the fiscal and economic implications of the agenda being pushed by the union-led “May 12 Coalition,” which is sponsoring a big demonstration in Manhattan today to demand big increases in state and city taxes.

She writes:

The group comprises the usual suspects — the United Federation of Teachers, the Transport Workers Union, the big health-care unions, the Coalition for the Homeless, etc.

No surprise: People who depend on big government want bigger government. The $49.7 billion that [Mayor] Bloomberg will spend next year — up 11.2 percent from the year before — isn’t enough. The coalition has catalogued every “devastating” budget cut, from the $515 million the mayor would save by cutting 6,000 teachers to $250,000 off a “homeless prevention fund.”

The coalition has a “solution”: Sock it to the wealthy. They want a return of the state’s temporary “millionaire’s tax,” which Gov. Cuomo allowed to expire. A year from now, the coalition says, the higher tax rate would bring in $5 billion — with about $1.9 billion going to the city.

The problem, she notes, is that “When you tax something, you get less of it — sometimes so much less that a higher tax rate brings in fewer tax dollars.”  That’s already happening with the city’s cigarette tax–which has risen in stages from $1.19 per pack in 2002 to $5.85 per pack since last year, and is now raising less money.

And, as Nicole says, unlike smokers’ attachment to their Marlboros, high-income taxpayers aren’t necessarily addicted to living in New york.

About the Author

E.J. McMahon

Edmund J. McMahon is Empire Center's founder and a senior fellow.

Read more by E.J. McMahon

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