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Press Release

    Should New Yorkers Pay Up for Government Failure to Live On Budget?

    In the last ten years New York’s state budget has jumped from $70.7 billion in 1998 to a proposed $121.1 billion in 2009, a staggering 71 percent increase.  Over the ten year period, the New York budget has grown by an average seven percent per year.  During the same time, New York median income has increased 43 percent, demonstrating that the state government has become a greater burden than New Yorkers can afford. 

    With the current economic slowdown, New York is facing a $15.4 billion budget gap.  But rather than cutting state spending and the size of government, New York Governor David Paterson has proposed $1.4 billion in new spending, a 1.1 percent increase over last year. To pay for this new spending, Governor Paterson has proposed 137 new fees and taxes.  New taxes will be levied on everyday items such as taxi rides, soda, movie tickets, itunes, beer, clothing, and cable television.  The proposed budget also repeals the cap on the state gas tax, opening the door for future pain at the pump.  It also imposes a new fee for those paying taxes with paper forms, essentially a tax on paying taxes. 

    Governor Paterson’s budget is nickel and dimming the citizens of New York to preserve pork projects, bloated government agencies, and bureaucrats.  The Governor is looking for any excuse to raise taxes.  When rolling out the budget, he wrote an oped for CNN.com claming he is proposing an 18 percent tax on soda as a health precaution, with a side benefit of raising revenue.   

    While he may claim to be raising taxes ‘for the children,’ in reality it is just a political stunt to troll for cash instead of doing hard work to tighten the budget.  Resulting to gimmicks and consumption taxes to pay for the costs of government eventually leads to higher income taxes when revenues do not meet projections. FreedomWorks

    President Matt Kibbe commented: “At a time when New York families are being squeezed by the economy, Governor Paterson is making life harder.  He should be reducing taxes, not raising them.  Under Governors Paterson’s budget, a family of four with a kid in college would pay $3,900 more each year.  Unfortunately, any of the proposed federal tax relief of $1000 per family will simply be forwarded on to the tax man in New York.  Tough budget times call for the government to prioritize and live in its means, not burden families with a heavy tax load.”