Tag: Andrew Cuomo

While several business groups praised the tax-cutting effort, some conservative and liberal groups issued warnings about the package’s value. “How do you call this meaningful?” E.J. McMahon, president of the Empire Center for New York State Policy, said of the property tax savings, which he said would be worth only about $60 for average homeowners in Erie and Niagara counties. “Are they honestly saying that giving folks in Western New York $60 a year is going to boost the upstate economy? Really?” he added. Read More

The SEQR law last saw major revisions in the mid-1990s. The state DEC should take the Empire Center's recommendations to heart as it ponders making changes now. You can't be open for business - as Cuomo is so fond of saying - while still having such a burdensome SEQR law on the books. Read More

In 2011, Cuomo decided to cap growth in education spending at the rate of New Yorkers' personal income growth, and he cut state aid accordingly for the 2011-12 school year by $1.3 billion. In 2012-13, personal income grew about four percent, and Cuomo and the Legislature awarded an $800 million increase, the maximum allowed under the cap. “The cap is not real. I don't think the cap is ever going to be real again,” said E.J. McMahon, president of the Empire Center, a fiscally conservative think tank. “I don't think it ever was binding. I think it was a convenient pretext in the governor's first couple of years and increasingly is going to be disregarded.” Read More

Unfortunately, Mr. Cuomo so far has been unwilling to combine the tax cap with meaningful local-mandate relief, especially public-sector collective-bargaining reforms that would give county executives, mayors and school boards more tools to live within the cap. Read More

A report issued last week by one of Gov. Andrew Cuomo's two tax commissions has rekindled debate regarding taxes in the Empire State. Former Gov. George Pataki and former state Comptroller Carl McCall headed the commission. E. J. McMahon, president of the Empire Center for Public Policy, praised the report's recommendation the state cut the top estate-tax rate and raise the taxable estate threshold to federal levels. "The Empire State would remain one of a very few jurisdictions still imposing any death tax, but it would at least take a smaller bite out of fewer estates," he said in comments published in the New York Post. Read More

Gov. Cuomo has just been handed a decidedly mixed bag of tax-reduction recommendations — combining pro-growth business-tax cuts with a gimmicky “property-tax relief” package that would deliver virtually no economic bang for the buck. Read More

Gov. Cuomo has OK’d a bill allowing suburban Rockland County to issue bonds to cover a portion of its huge budget deficit — without the customary mandate for a state takeover of the troubled county’s finances. In letting Rockland buy time with borrowed money, the governor is all but inviting New York’s other troubled counties and municipalities to push for similar treatment. Read More

Bill de Blasio seems poised to waltz into Gracie Mansion largely on the strength of his proposal for a soak-the-rich income tax hike. But the tax increase would need approval in Albany, where Gov. Andrew Cuomo wants to position himself as a moderate tax-cutter for his 2014 re-election bid. So the governor is doing his best to discourage de Blasio, warning that a city tax increase would prompt wealthy New Yorkers to flee to Florida. Read More


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Empire Center for Public Policy
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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.