New York Must Raise Taxes Regardless Of Whether It Receives Federal Relief, Gov. Cuomo Says

In what should come as a shock to precisely no one, New York’s Governor Andrew Cuomo (famous for pissing away hundreds of millions of dollars in Tesla’s Buffalo boondoggle), thinks he’s such a great allocator of capital that his state needs to raise taxes. The Democrat playbook is becoming a bit predictable, isn’t it?

This, of course, comes while businesses and private citizens are moving hand over fist out of the state in favor of states like Florida and Texas, where there is no personal income tax.

Cuomo made the comments on Wednesday of this week when he was asked about the deficit created for his state by the Covid-19 pandemic. “Mr. Cuomo didn’t specify which taxes the state would look to increase, and his aides didn’t answer subsequent questions,” the Wall Street Journal reported. That’s some high quality leadership if we’ve ever seen it.

The state had adopted a budget in April that was dependent on further Federal relief that has not yet materialized. Now, Cuomo is saying that even if the Federal relief happens, tax hikes are still on the table. 

Currently, both sides of the aisle once again seem gridlocked on getting any type of stimulus deal done, with a punt of the issue into 2021 becoming more likely as the days pass by.

New York has blamed the pandemic for a $13.5 billion drop in state revenue from the state’s pre-pandemic projections and the state is predicting an $8.7 billion deficit for the fiscal year starting in April. We wonder if Cuomo and his merry gang of legislators have done the math on exactly how much more state revenue they stand to lose by forcing more people out of the state with higher taxes, versus what they stand to gain from another hike. We’re sure they haven’t. 

Cuomo said on Wednesday: “If Washington gives us some of it, then we’re going to have to redo a budget, we’re going to have to raise taxes—I believe we’re going to have to raise taxes, at the end of the day, in any event. The question is, how much in tax?”

The state is projected to bring in about $60 billion in personal income taxes next year, which accounts for about half of its revenue. About half of the state’s personal income tax comes from the highest 2% earners in the state. 

Republicans have stood at stark odds with Cuomo on the issue, while businesses continue to warn that higher taxes could prompt them to leave the state.  Senate Minority Leader Robert Ortt, a Republican from Niagara County, said: “New York is one of the highest taxed states in the nation, and raising taxes will result in the continuation of the exodus from this state.”