If Gov. Andrew Cuomo thinks taxes are so burdensome in Upstate New York, why not cut them for every business?

That’s the Empire Center’s reaction to Cuomo’s plan unveiled Wednesday that would create tax-free zones around SUNY campuses for employers and employees.

“In the final analysis, highly touted ‘economic development’ programs built on a promise of significant tax relief ultimately beg the same question: If our taxes are such a hindrance to growth, why not reduce them for everyone?” wrote E.J. McMahon, senior fellow for the Empire Center, in a blog post.

McMahon suggested that instead of targeted tax breaks, the state should phase out the state corporate franchise tax across all of Upstate New York. It could be paid for by rescinding the $440 million annual tax breaks for television and film productions.

The Civil Service Employees Association didn’t think much of Cuomo’s Tax-Free NY program, either.

“The governor doesn’t get the fact that more corporate welfare is no answer to New York’s economic challenges,” CSEA President Danny Donohue said in a statement. “The governor has the money for the things that help his political agenda and his millionaire friends, but he just doesn’t give a fig about working people.”

© 2013, Syracuse Post-Standard

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About

The Empire Center is an independent, non-partisan, non-profit think tank located in Albany, New York. Our mission is to make New York a better place to live and work by promoting public policy reforms grounded in free-market principles, personal responsibility, and the ideals of effective and accountable government.