Focus On New York, Not Washington
With the uproar from Gov. Cuomoís dog and pony show that was the State of the State finally dying down, we can get back to the real work for this upcoming legislative session with clear goals in mind. We have a $4 billion budget deficit looming this year, and the governor wants to point fingers at the federal government instead of addressing real concerns at home. Political gamesmanship and questionable motives are polluting the way we run our state and Gov. Cuomo is at the center of it all. We as a state must think long and hard about who we are.
Our most pressing issue is of course that of our budget deficit. While Gov. Cuomo rails against the federal tax plan as unfair to New York, we are letting our businesses languish. We have other problems to deal with than getting into a political fight with Washington. New York has the second most unfriendly business tax climate in the country. This stifles local businesses and prevents new ones from opening; and thatís solely on the governorís desires.
As a small business owner, I understand the trials that kind of tax burden places on employers. After listening to and speaking with many other business owners, I fought for the Small Business Full Employment Act. This legislation would ease the tax burden on small businesses and create more opportunities for employment and growth by allowing New York businesses to compete in the modern global market.
Eliminating programs like the Downtown Revitalization Initiative and cutting the $423 million dollars from ads promoting the governorís failed pet projects like Start-Up New York should be high on the list. Throwing money at a problem to try and boost revenue isnít working; itís just shoveling tax payer money into a pit.
Secondly, out of all the governorís points in the State of the State address, his strongest was on the opioid epidemic. This is one area I think we should strongly consider allocating funds to instead of questionably effective economic development packages. I have hosted numerous forums to discuss this problem and attempt to find a solution, and itís clear we all agree. We must stop opioids from claiming any more of our neighborsí lives.
Together we can drive to make New York a safer and more prosperous place to live, without having to whine to the federal government. We have always taken care of our own, and we will always continue to do so because that is our way. We need to do the hard work that needs to be done and I will be proud to do just that this legislative session.